New Bridges in Times of Isolation
Development of a new interactive and interdisciplinary artistic program
Corona forces everybody to plan and work differently – also those working as artists or organizers of cultural projects. Despite all difficulties, we were lucky to find out that this challenging situation also offers a lot of positive effects: new creative concepts, new spaces and new encounters.
The Willy Brandt Center currently works on the development of a new interactive and interdisciplinary artistic program, connecting elements from the fields of dance, music, theatre and circus. This program is designed to reach out to institutions such as retirement homes, orphanages and homes for children with disabilities in Israel and the Westbank – which are at risk of being further distanced from their society due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
As an overture to this new program, we organized two artistic performances for the residents of the House Jemima, a home for Palestinian children and young adults with special needs and different types and stages of disabilities, located in the village of Beit Jala, next to Bethlehem.
Precautions against Covid-19 requested a very careful approach in order to guarantee the safety of the performers and their audience, including the usage of masks and gloves, as well as setting up in an airy outdoor area for a limited number of 20 residents.
The program kicked off with a performance of the Palestinian accordionist Mohammad Qutati from Ramallah, who played accordion arrangements for traditional Arabic songs, inviting the audience to actively participate by singing, clapping and dancing. The second half of the program was presented by the ensemble “Mini Clown Official”, consisting of three young Palestinian artists from Bethlehem who prepared an interactive theatre, song and dance performance.
We were extremely touched by the very warm welcome, the joyful and enthusiastic ambiance, and the kind feedback that we received from the residents and their caretakers at House Yemima, and are looking forward to many more happy human encounters.
click on of the images below to open the gallery (Photos (c) Iuna Viera):