Start in Valencia ‘Erasmus Scene European Festival’, the first European university theatrical meeting with students from more than 25 countries

Start in Valencia ‘Erasmus Scene European Festival’, the first European university theatrical meeting with students from more than 25 countries

The Erasmus+ Scene Network organizes in the University of València, from May 21 to 25, the ‘Erasmus Scene European Festival’, a European theater event that will bring together, in València, for the first time, all the Erasmus Scene venues. This festival, in which students from more than 25 countries will participate, takes place within the framework of the Erasmus+ Scene Network (E+ SCN) cultural project, a pioneering initiative for the integration of refugee, migrant and Erasmus students through the learning of languages ​​with the performing arts as a vehicle of cohesion.

‘Eramus Scene European Festival’, which will be held at the La Nau Cultural Center of the Universitat de València, has been presented to the media this Monday at Sala Matilde Salvador, where a theater play will be staged every day throughout the week. The Vice Chancellor of Culture, Antonio Ariño, took part in the press conference; Josep Valero, from CRIT Companyia de Teatre and technical coordinator of the project; Caterina Barone, coordinator of Scena Erasmus Padova (Italy); Christina Bohle, coordinator of the Erasmus office of the University of Marburg (Germany); and the territorial coordinator of CEAR in the Valencian Community, Jaume Durà.

Vice-chancellor Antonio Ariño has defined the E+SCN project as “a qualitative leap” in the trajectory of Escena Erasmus, an initiative of the Universitat de València with nearly a decade. He has focused his speech on the idea of ​​”theater and citizenship” and has said: “We build European citizenship through theater, because this is the reason why today students from more than 25 countries gather here, who will create ties for all life”. It has also claimed the role of Europe as a welcoming, welcoming and inclusive continent of refugees and migrants, “because they are also Europe and, therefore, deserve the recognition of citizens”. And he added: “We understand theater as an element of union of Europe because scenic arts allow inclusion insofar as they contribute to representing a collective image, said this in a transnationalist sense, of cosmopolitan citizenship”. In this sense, he has appealed to “dialogue” as a tool of “convergence”, a thing that is done through theater, “which is an opportunity for realization and dignity as individuals and as a collective project”.

From CEAR País Valencià, Jaume Durà has referred to the artistic and human part of the E+SCN project: “The theater is a fundamental tool to criticize the attitude of governments that do not want a host Europe and that close borders”.

To which Caterina Barone added: “Our Europe has to be a Europe of culture, peace and inclusion, and Eramus Scene European Festival brings together both elements: the cultural and the human”.

‘Eramus Scene European Festival’ is the culmination of the E+ SCN project, the first European university theater network, promoted by the Universitat de València, which will include refugee people with the support of the CEAR delegation. (the Spanish Commission for Refugee Aid) in the Comunitat Valenciana.

The Festival includes the premiere of new theatrical productions of the Escena Erasmus groups of the Universities of València, Padua and Marburgo: a trilogy that reflects on past, present and future Europe with the migratory crisis as its central theme; besides lectures, dramatization workshops, training sessions in European projects, spaces of solidarity and receptions in Valencian public institutions, thus creating a forum for the meeting of new synergies of international and inter-institutional collaboration.

The theatrical performances
The first work of the trilogy will be ‘The Trojan Women” by Euripides, as the last of Europe. Under the direction of Francesco Puccio, Scena Erasmus Padova (Italy) will stage the Greek tragedy on the 21st and 22nd. It is one of the best anti-war works in history, showing the suffering of women and children after each war , and that was used to protest against the war and as a warning for the spectator audience.

The present will be the responsibility of the German theater group Dramarasmus Marburg. Directed by Romy Semler, she will perform ‘Re.Un.Ion’ by Inga Dreger, a nostalgic journey along the path of memory in search of a European idea. There will also be two performances, days 23 and 24.

The theatrical performances will begin every day at 7:30 p.m., in the Sala Matilde Salvador of the historic building of the University. Tickets are priced at 2 euros and can be purchased through the advance sale at or at the Cultural Center La Nau.

Other activities
The Festival program is also nourished by a series of free access activities for all audiences that will take place in the Aula Magna de La Nau, at 10:30 am. On Tuesday 22, the presentation of the intellectual results of the E + SCN project will take place. On Wednesday 23, the round table ‘Culture as a tool for European integration and development’ will be held, which will be formed by the delegate of the Generalitat Valenciana for the EU, Joan Calabuig; the deputy of European Projects of the Diputació de València, Bartolomé Nofuentes; and experts from the University of Valencia. And on Thursday 24, the colloquium ‘Culture, Integration and Mediterranean. Theater as a tool for the integration of refugees’, directed by the European Institute of the Mediterranean (IEMED) and CEAR PV.

After the colloquium, at 13:00, the Colla de Dolçaines i Percussió of the Universitat de València, directed by Juan Ramon Martí i Chulià, will offer a musical recital in the Cloister of the historic building of the University.

Erasmus + Scene Network
The Universitat de València launched the Escena Erasmus project now almost a decade ago and since then has worked on the revitalization and extension of the project to other European cities through its universities, giving rise to Erasmus + Scene Network, an initiative led by the Fundació General de la Universitat de València with the funding of the European Erasmus + program and comprising four partners from three countries: the Fundació General and CRIT Companyia de Teatre (Spain), Philipps-Universität Marburg (Germany) and Università degli Studi di Padova (Italy).

It is an European cultural project based on theater and education, aimed at Erasmus students, Valencian students and refugees in Valencia, which has also been recognized with the European Seal of Cultural Heritage. The main objective is to establish a meeting point between all of them so that they can work together with a common goal: the creation of theatrical shows. This process will lead to the acquisition of linguistic, communicative, artistic and expressive skills to improve some aspects of the integration and employability of the participants. Thus, what is intended is the integration of refugee citizens, immigrants and Erasmus students, through language learning, using theater and the performing arts as a vehicle for cohesion.

A festival to enrich the city of Valencia
Erasmus students, faculty and university authorities have visited the Valencia City Council where they have been received by the councilor and first deputy mayor, Sandra Gómez, who has stated that “it is a privilege for València to host this program because it will enrich the city as a whole”.

The event was also attended by the Vice Chancellor of Culture and Sports, Antonio Ariño; the Vice Chancellor for Internationalization and Cooperation, Carles Padilla; and the manager of the Fundació General de la Universitat de València, leader of the E+SCN project, Cristóbal Suria, who thanked the City Council for its support for a “project that will value the city of Valencia”.