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DESCRIPTION The brochure gathers a collection of activities which took place during the exchange “Theatre of Europe� and description of theatrical art of participating countries. The participants decided to create this material in order disseminate project results in local/regional/national areas. The brochure can be useful for youth workers, trainers, facilitators and everyone from the educational field, especially working in the topic of personal effectiveness, intercultural dialog and social inclusion. Also the brochure will be interesting for those who want to know how the youth exchanges are organized, what participants are doing during them and how the similar projects affects them. Besides thank to the content brochure will be useful for those who want to expand their horizons and learn a little more about such countries of Europe as Poland, Italy, Slovakia, Romania and Latvia. Have a pleasant reading!



heatre of Europe” it’s the youth exchange project organized by society "Daugavpils jauniešu savienība" with financial support of “Erasmus+: Youth in action” program. The youth exchange project implemented 9 months (01.01.2016 -11.09.2016). The project venue was Daugavpils (Latvia) and there participated young people from Latvia, Poland, Italy, Slovakia and Romania. The aim of the project "Theatre of Europe" was to promote the personal effectiveness and tolerance of youth against different social realities through the theatre art. The youth exchange activities implemented within 10 days (20.05-29.05). In the project were used the following methods: presentations, brainstorming, discussions, interviews, individual, group and team works, ice-breaking activities, team making activities, energizers and theatre activities. As a result of planned activities the youth was acquainted with the cultures of European countries. They acquired the skills to understand the representatives of the different cultures in the context of theatre art, got acquainted with methods of verbal and nonverbal communication and used them in practice, as well as they discovered their creative potential participating in different theatrical performances.

Toolkit ICE-BREAKING AND NAME GAMES ―Show your hobby!‖

―Hello‖ The trainer gives a short welcome to participants (lasting about one minute). Then the trainer asks participants to walk around the room and to greet each other in the way they usually does (with handshakes or words). This should go for one minute. Then participants are greeting each other in the unusual way (as soldiers or cowboys, princesses, best friends etc.)

Everyone in the group stands in a circle. The first person says, "My name is and I like to ______ (insert hobby and act out a motion from that hobby.) The rest of group then says, "(Person's Name) likes to (hobby) and acts out motion. Example, "My name is Dave and I like Fish (action out casting a reel).The next person repeats the process. The rest of group then says that person's name, hobby, and motion and the moves onto the first person's info. This continues until the last person goes, at which the entire group calls out the last person's info and moves along through the whole group and repeats everyone' s info.

―Speed dating‖ Set up the chairs in two circles, a small circle and a larger circle outside of that. Make sure that the chairs are facing each other and there are an equal amount of chairs in the inside circle as well as the outside circle. Every participant is sitting across from another participant, can be same or opposite sex. Then within one minute the pairs are discussing a question proposed by the trainer. After one minute, the players rotate to the next person and discuss the second question. Note: if the room is small,

you can form two rows, instead of circles.

―The curtain is falling‖ The participants are divided in two groups. Two facilitators hang a curtain/cloth/sheet that separates both groups. Each group decides who should stand in front of the curtain from their side. When one person from each group stands in each side (they shouldn’t be able to see each other), the facilitators let the curtain fall and the first of the two saying the other person’s name wins. The winner is the faster one. „The secret friend‖ The facilitator writes the name of each participant in a paper, in advance. In the beginning of the week/activity/project, each participant takes a name of another participant and keeps it secretly. The participants are debriefed about their role as secret friends: they should make his/her

friend feel good, supported, motivated during the time this game takes. (Do not hesitate to include the names of the facilitators as well). By the end of the activity the facilitator gathers the participants and starts by one of them asking who he/she thinks it is his/her secret friend. The secret friend should be the next one trying to guess, and following this logic everyone should get to know who was his/her secret friend „Sculpture gallery‖ First Part: Creating the Sculptures. Participants are divided into pairs. In each pair, one person is the "sculptor" and one the "clay. „The sculptor "sculpts" his or her partner's body into a statue. The sculptor may do this by physically moving the partner's body into position, or by showing the "clay" how to stand. The sculptor pays close attention to even small details like facial expression or the position of a finger. When the "sculpture" is finished, she or he freezes (if the position is difficult or impossible to hold, the "sculpture" may memorize it and then relax until her or his turn in the "tour" arrives) Second Part: Gallery Tour. Once all of the artists have finished their masterpieces, leader of activity call them together in the center of the room. The "sculptures" remain in place around the room. In role as a museum guide, he (leader) will conduct a tour of the "gallery." When the participants reach each work, the artist who made it steps forward and explains his or her work to the group. In this way group make a complete tour, giving each artist a chance to show off and describe his or her work. (Once a "sculpture" has been viewed, she or he may relax and join the group on the rest of the tour).


―Chair Challenge‖ Participants divided into three groups, each has its own purpose: 1) to arrange all the chairs in a circle, 2) to rotate all the chairs upside down, 3) take care that none of the chairs touch the ground. Task is known only by members of the group. Groups are given time to discuss their strategy. All tied up their eyes enter the room with chairs, from this moment to the end of the game no one should speak. Task is given a specific time to be completed. When the time comes to an end, everyone must set in. At this point it is notified that it IS possible to accomplish the task satisfying desires of the whole group

THEATRICAL ACTIVITIES ―THEATRICAL COMPETITION" Participants are divided into three teams: one team are the evaluation commission, two other groups of participants are competitors. The competitor group selects one item from bag and prepares short improvisation play using the selected item (for example, lipstick from the bag can be used as a microphone and so on). The task of the commission is to evaluate the improvisation of each group from a scale to 1 for 5 points and to decide about the winning team.

MONOLOGUE‖ Each group chooses one picture, which reflects a situation related to human rights violations. The task of groups: to examine the picture very carefully and to think who is that person in the picture; to describe his life, his emotions and feelings in the current moment and finally come to the conclusion which human

rights violation situation is shown there. The second step of the activity is to write a monologue of the person shown in a picture. The minimum for monologue are 5 sentences. All prepared monologues are presented at the end of activity. WHAT IS DEMOCRACY? The participants are giving their definition of the word democracy and are considering the various situations of life, in which the democracy are reflected in their opinion. Then participants are divided into groups, and one of the democratic situations they mentioned above, should be reproduced in the form of roleplaying game. In the end each group presents their democratic performances. ―MIME SHOW ON EUROPEAN VALUES‖ In group participants makes a list of values, which in their opinion are most important for society and Europe. Then the participants are divided into smaller groups. After in the form of lottery each group selects sheet of paper containing one of value. The task for each team is to represent

the selected value through the mime show (without words and sounds). Other groups should guess what value the acting team has reflected in their play. EVERYBODY IS UNIQUE Instruction for trainer: to begin the lesson, write the word unique on the board. Ask participants to brainstorm what the word means to them. Next, draw a simple outline of a person on the board or chart. Draw two horizontal lines across the person's body. One line should divide the person's head (including the neck) and torso (shoulders to waist); the other should divide the torso and leg area (from the waist-down). Discuss with participants what makes this part of body unique. When you are satisfied that students have the three parts of the body sorted out, provide each participant with a piece of white drawing paper. On the other side of the paper specify what part of the body participant need to draw and make it unique. All images are then sorted into three piles and the participants are divided into three groups. Each group randomly chooses three body parts (thus each group will have one ―unique‖ friend). Give the groups task to think up a name for his or her new "friend" and to give some thought to some of the characteristics the new friend might have. Ask: What special qualities does this unique person have? What special talents does the person possess? What do you have in common with your new friend? How are you different? Then each group should write an article about theirs new friend encouraging others to meet him. Example: it is our new friend. His name is...You should to get know him better, because he is…


Freewritting Before starting the activity, ask participants to clear their mind and relax. Then set a time limit for them. After you’ve set a time limit, give the task for participants to write without stopping. On a sheet of paper they should write down everything that comes to mind at the moment. You can also give a certain topic for freewritting. When the time limit is finished each of them should stop their writing. Ask them to go to the top of page and read slowly their text, underlining all of the ideas that surfaced during the session.

Circle of alternative Participants sit in a circle. Then the volunteer selects an item from bag offered by facilitator (the bag should be dark so that none of the participants could not see what it contains). The task of participants: one after other to give alternative uses for item selected by volunteer. At the end of the first circle from the bag are selected the other item.

Note: more unusual are the items in the bag, the more interesting the game will be.

How it was...

Youth Exchange „Theatre of Europe‖ photography collection

Theatre In Latvia


The first theatre performance took place in Riga in 1205 year. The performance was based on the Biblical legends and it was held under the open sky. Actor’s speech and play was commented by the interpreter. In 17th century tour in Riga gave German, English, Italian and other professional actor’s troupes.

The most famous playwrights of the late XIX — early XX centuries were Rudolph Blaumanis, Rainis and Aspasia. In their plays with help of mythological characters and stories they represented turning points of the nation's historical moments.

After the Second World War the Latvian theatre were under strict surveillance and ideological pressure of the Soviet authorities. At that time theatre was one of those rare places where it was still possible to speak Latvian, and in the air was the feeling of personal freedom.

Today, Latvian cultural life cannot be imagined without the art scene – in all the major cities of Latvia works independent theatres. Also many cities of country regularly host various theatrical festivals.

Homo Novus in Riga

The International Festival of Contemporary Theatre Homo Novus started 20 years ago in Daugavpils with the idea to build new relationships between local artists and audiences and international performing arts scene. The possibility and beauty of

new, unexpected relationships has been the driving force of Homo Novus during these twenty years. The Latvian theatre showcase

Street theatre festival in Liepaja

Latvian Theatre Showcase is an annual festival presenting a selection of most recent performances in Latvian theatre and dance. The Showcase is intended for professional international audiences and is organized by the New Theatre Institute of Latvia in collaboration with theatres and independent companies.

Latvians love theatre with all heart. Going to the theatre is like a ritual- people wear fancy clothes, go to a cafe before the performance and buy flowers for their favorite actor. If you come to the theater in jeans, you run the risk of attracting sidelong glances; if you make any noise during the theatrical action, you can chew.

Polish Theatre With its complex history and fascinating present, Poland has proven a fruitful ground for theatre makers. Today’s theatre is In fact, some of slightly different than thetoworld’s it used be in XX most century. New influential and generation of people revolutionary has other artists of the exceptations, they’re Occidental looking for fun. And stage came that’s why most of from Poland. performances are comedies, and much less dramas.

After. a short political break brought by the 1989 breakthrough, theatre again started to take on social obligations. Polish culture was free of censure. It is strongly claimed that something has been changing in Polish theatre recently and that along with young artists entering the theatre, the theatre life . started to accelerate.





1885-1939. Known for: pure form, the absurd, pranks, painting, photography One of the most frequently translated Polish

authors, whose texts have been transcribed into more than 30 languages and released in countries across the globe. Witkacy is also the most frequently performed Polish playwright on the global theatrical scene. Today, hardly a season goes by without a performance of one

of his dramas or an exhibition of his paintings.

In Poland, there are a lot of social actions, which are trying to implant theatrical culture not only in elder people, but especially in youngster. That’s why many societies are making special events.

Theatre In Romania

History In the communist era Romanian theatre was under the influence of ideological censorship and taboo subjects. After the Romanian Anticommuni sm Revolution (1989), the theater redefined itself, adapted to the new reality and to the European theatre.

Ion Luca Caragiale Romanian playwright, short story writer, poet,

theater manager, political commentator and journalist.

Leaving behind



cultural legacy, he is considered one of the greatest playwrights in Romanian language and literature. He wrote not just theatre plays, but as well novels, sketches and historical & fantasy fiction

O scrisoare pierduta (A Lost Letter)

and O

noapte furtunoasa (A stormy night)-the most

famous works of I.L.Caragiale

Eugene Ionesco & the Theater of Absurd •






playwright of the Absurd Theater •

His works concentrated on the solitude and insignificance of one’s life and ridiculed the most banal situations of life

Commedia dell'arte is a form of theatre characterized by masked "types which began in Italy in the 16th century and was responsible for the advent of actresses and improvised performances based on sketches or scenarios.

Originally, it was called commedia all'improvviso.

The characters of the commedia usually represent fixed social types. Commedia dell'arte has three main groups of stock roles: the masters or elders (almost always old men hence their Italian name, the vecchi)

the servants (zanni)

and the lovers (innamorati, also known as the amorosi)

Characters were identified by costumes, masks, and props, such as a type of baton known as slapstick.

Conventional plot lines were written on themes of sex, jealousy, love and old age. Many of the basic plot elements can be traced back to the Roman comedies of Plautus and Terence. Not all scenary were comic, there were some mixed forms and even tragedies. Music and dance were central to commedia dell'arte performance.

This particular type of theatre remained popular in Italy until the half of 18th century when Carlo Goldoni, a very famous Italian author, reformed the Commedia dell’arte introducing a new method of theatre base on the implementation of very detailed scripts.

Outside Italy, the Commedia dell'arte had its greatest success in France, where it became the Comédie-Italienne. In England, elements from it were naturalized in the harlequinade in pantomime and in the Punch-and-Judy show, a puppet play involving the commedia dell’arte Theatre in Slovakia character Punch. The comical Hanswurst, of German folklore, was also a commedia dell’arte character

Pavol Országh Hviezdoslav the biggest representative of tragedy genre in Slovakia. First, he wrote in a traditional style, but later became influenced by parnassism and modernism

Herodes a herodias The historical drama of Herod and Herodias inspired by the biblical story of incarceration and the beheading of John the Baptist. Due to its plot-twists, exceptional dramatic events, the multiplicity of human lives and influence of William Shakespeare works, which P.O. Hviezdoslav very honoured and respected, drama has received the worldwide recognition.

Július Satinskýa Slovak actor, comedian, singer, showman and writer. He is mostly remembered in Slovakia as member of the legendary comedian duo Milan Lasica - Július Satinský, however his scope of interest was wide.

In Slovakia are two buildings of old national theatre - old and new.

PARTICIPANT’S FEEDBACKS ''This amazing project „Theatre of Europe” took place in Latvia from the 20th may to the 29th. I met beatiful people from Romania, Poland, Slovakia and Latvia. I found strange that everybody was speaking Russian but soon I get used to it. We got to know each other and we made a big and tied group. The Italian group was multicultural: Usman is from Pakistan and Aida from Albania, so we had the possibility to know other different cultures. Aida, as she studies theatrical perfomances, helped us a lot with advices in the backstage and workshop. We had a lot of theatrical activities and games. We undertook seriously everything and the final show was a success. Tiziano and Usman were good actors, I preferred to help the group with scenography and decorations. Personally I learned new things about theatre and I challenged myself, so the evaluation is positive. I really had much fun! Carla, Italy I really like the idea with theatre. It is true we didn't do much energizers or ice breakers. But we made strong friendships, learned how to improvise and of course everybody know that Tiziano is awesome! And it was really helpful to call an actress that helped us with final performance. Angelika, Slovakia

It was a great experience participating in such an interesting project. I've never sang and danced at the same time with partner, so called dance musical. Also it was a chance to meet such a nice people, get to know their culture and history of theatre and different kinds of performance. I found common language so fast and made friends. Thank you for unforgettable time, miss you so much. Alexander, Latvia

It was a wonderfull project. I learned many new things about theater. I met many new people. I learned many interesting games and activities. Was very well organized. Thanks for everything! Adriana, Romania

I like the idea with theaters too. We could learn about theatrical genders, it was really interesting. But It was a pity that we was nearly still in office, we could go outside more. It was cool that we played at festival, I’ve never done it before. I had amazing time with you guys. Emma, Slovakia

The Erasmus plus project „Theatre of Europe� was a great opportunity to improve my English and meet new amazing people. I'm glad that I took part in such a project and it was a great experience. I really liked the participants and I regret the fact that we spent a lot of time working in the office and I lost the opportunity to visit Daugavpils and the surroundings more. Overall, it was a nice project and I will never forget it.

Bogdan, Romania

This project was very important to me as I have found new perspectives on theatre and different types of theatre. I have enhanced my competences with regards to theatre as tool for social change. I think we had as well a lot of fun and we learnt from each other. Hopefully, we shall be able to disseminate what we have learnt in the direction of social education and fighting for basic rights. Thank you! Alexandrina, Romania

"Theatre of Europe was great adventure in my life. This was perfect opportunity to learn about culture of Latvia and other countries from participating groups. There was one best thing in this project, there was no leader selected in our group, everyone could try different roles. The only thing which was limiting us, was our imagination. We could see how our ideas were turning into reality. Preparing the final show was real prove, that we became one, like a clock, everyone had part in it and everything worked together perfectly. I will never forget all those great people I have met, while I was in Latvia. I do not regret any single moment spent during the project. I am sure that the newly acquired abilities, will have use in my daily life." "During the project I've learnt that teamwork is a key for some works, but only in case when everyone is fully engaged in. I used to be more individual, but realised that with friends and good atmosphere we can do better, and with fun." "I will use my new acting skills at my theatre group." "For me the best in the project was dumb show, final performance and sculpture gallery" The Polish Team

Video on project „Theatre of Europe” (tags for searching: #theatreofeurope#daugavpils#youthexchange#erasmus#ErasmusPl usLV) „Zootopia” (participant’s final perfomance) (tags:#zootopia#daugavpils#ErasmusPlusLV)

„Erasmus: Youth in action” program legal representative in Latvia: Agency for International Programs for Youth Mukusalas str. 41, Riga, LV-1004, Latvia Phone: +371 67358065 Fax: +371 67358060 E-mail:

Theatre of Europe