EMIGREES ON THE STAGE
Start date: Feb 1, 2015,
End date: Sep 30, 2015
After the Congress of Berlin in 1878 and the start of the decline of Ottoman sovereignty in these lands, the continuum was very much reversed which gave way to a great transition where there were mass migrations to Anatolia now based more on religion; to become Muslim.
As an outcome of these migrations the Balkan immigrants who settled in Anatolia brought along with them their own country's cultural heritage of hundreds of years: their history, stories, foods, music and dances. In this geography which is incredibly diverse in relation to cultures, beliefs, languages and ethnic identities, it has never been easy to speak of each of the communities which inhabit the area with much clarity.
The sense of an "immigrant" identity found in the families of the Armenian, Bosnian, Bulgarian, and Greek communities we lived together with in these lands and that later on had to migrate. Their sense of belonging, their daily strives, and the prejudice with which people approach their lives and culture to this day. Additionally, their prejudices towards our culture. Although we are of the same culture the migrations has caused us to view our cultures as different from one another. This has led to diversity amongst culture.
With our project we want to help break the prejudices amongst the immigrant Balkan communities, who all used to live together until very recently, and the prejudices we have towards these communities as well. In order to make this happen we wanted to make use of the first thing that pops into the mind when one thinks of culture and community: music and dance. This is because music and dance reflects a community's traditions and customs, identity and nationality. They will utilize music and dance as a branch of culture. The works done in our project the participants will allow the participants to be better informed and to discover their own culture as well as the culture of the other immigrant communities who are essentially the same people as them by distancing themselves from prejudice through better understanding. Through the working methods the participants will be both better informed and increase their critical thinking abilities. Through the workshops they are going to work towards bettering their personal skills.
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