Strong? Very, very Strong!!!
It has been launched!!! The school project "Strong Without Violence" has set sail also in Italy!
This idea, which has already been implemented in Northern Germany arrived as the pilot project in the city of Foggia on the 31st of May.
For us, it entails holding various workshops as an educational method for a culture of non-violence patronized by the European Union, the Ministry of Public Education, the "2-You" Center and other organizations.
In this way we set off to work on the various artistic disciplines - dance, theater, music, voice, light design and not to mention stage scenery and graffiti, imparting our know-how and experiences with the students of the Einaudi Institute and with other High Schools.
And so you might ask: "Well, what's new?" Many of you who know Gen Rosso and have accompanied us through the decades know that we have done countless workshops in these 40 years.
The great novelty lies in the fact that this time, the students become "protagonists" when they perform "STREETLIGHT" on stage on the fourth and last day.
To define the experience, the emotion, the small drops of life's lessons that these youngsters have received cannot be easily defined in black and white.
It wasn't all that simple from the start - the time schedules, the choice of artistic disciplines to be included and the working relationship with each one had to start all from scratch. Anyhow we began with the introductions in a room cramped with people and we chose the phrase "For one another", with the intention of putting it into practice.
Immediately afterwards we started working, and here they discover their true potential: when Michele and Andrea sing, they give you the goose-bumps. Antonio, Emanuele e Annalaura with Fabiola, Federica and Chiara all dance remarkably, Monica and the other emcees who all claim to have stage fright become miraculously spontaneous, Maurizio and Francesco put all their passion in playing the fagotto and the clarinet in "Perchè ti amo" (Because I Love You) and "Le mie Mani" ("Don't Stop Loving"), not to mention the teachers Ciro and Antonio who seem have an endless supply of energy. The stage scenery workshop for example which had the presence of professional graffiti artists like Gabriele and Raffaele, with Annalisa impart their precious technique to the others of the group.
The show was finally presented in Teatro Mediterraneo, an amphitheater with 4,000 seats after five days of hard work.
During those days, we cannot help but notice the deep respect the students had for one another applauding those who did their part well during the show or maybe when they were helping each other remember the dance steps or the words of a song. Valerio, an adolescent with red hair and a tribal tattoo on his left arm, sitting next to the mixer at around 9:30 pm said: "I should have left hours before…but this is all too astounding…"
That evening…it was simply a celebration. The program started with "Lavori in Corso" ("Work in Progress") - where the students did a rendition of some of our repertoire, and as well as a composition done by the Electronic Musical Laboratory of the Einaudi school. The presentations lasted only for half an hour from Rap to Gospel, music, song and dance, and a back drop completed on the spot! And then came "Streetlight" - the Musical.
For the majority of the students it was the first time to perform on stage, and they did so with utmost professionalism, with all the nerve and energy the circumstances demanded of them. The logistical demands increase due to the fact that during those moments the cast has grown from ten to fifty persons and the flow from one scene to another has to be taken into consideration, but in the end, the scenes flowed seamlessly.
Many thanks guys, especially to those whom we failed to mention, for having allowed us to take part in your lives, and for having reminded us how good it feels to share the tears of one of your friends who unfortunately was not promoted to the next academic level. Your joy, enthusiasm and dedication took us by storm.
Thanks once again because all of you are not just the future generation, but more importantly because you exist here, right now in the present.
And above all a big "Thanks" because by just being yourselves, you give us a big hand in bringing ahead a seemingly impossible dream called a United World.