Thursday 20 October – Political Theatre in the city

With the help of Myrte Amons, a theatre director and teacher, we created a very interesting piece to perform in the city. In the first part we got the excersize to use the characters that we had played with the day before, dressing up like them and acting like them in the Vondelpark, in order to see how people reacted and to feel what it is like to be judged on your looks, habits or behaviour. It was a very funny experience, some of the participants really got into their role and we observed that a lot of passersby got really confused by them.

The second session took place at the Museumplein, a very busy area with a lot of tourists. We had practiced a piece on invisible theatre with the use of masks. The goal was to do a sort of flashmob in public space where nobody would expect us. The piece was about an invicible border, with two border guards checking all the people that wanted to pass. All of us took on a mask as soon as the play started, so it was visible for the audience that something was happening. It was quite a powerful piece and quite some passersby stopped to look at us and made pictures of us. At the end we all held a poster with a statement:

“People who are born with good passports will never know how sharp the teeth of this world are and how strong when they bite. The teeth of this world: police officers, the alien police, borderguards, receptionists of cheap hotels. The worm and the bird move freely around this world, but the people without passports…” – Rodaan al Galidi

Sunday 16 October – Colonialism and Racism in Amsterdam

On Sunday morning we had the first part of the project presentations of the participants. Julia, Sisilia and Oana showed the results of their very nice project “A suitcase full of memories – A suitcase full of dreams” which they did in Wedding, a neighbourhood in Berlin, together with minor refugee youth. They organised a week long workshop on art and theatre, tried out different methods and managed to make an exhibition and short movies with the youth. They showed the movies during their presentation, which were really funny, and everyone was impressed by what they had reached in such a short time. It was really inspiring to see the impact they had made with their project, how they had connected different stakeholders, artists and the neighbourhood and how they created a safe space for those youngsters while remaining critical on their own position and the way of labeling the youth.

Poster – A Suitcase Full Of Memories

Other presentations were done by Lea on her participation at the Welcome Festival for migrants and Berliners in the summer at Tempelhofer Feld in Berlin (

 Source: Ekvidi Photography

Sameha and Marie showed a short movie of their training at the University of Applied Science in Amsterdam, where they tried out different methods they learned in the first training in Berlin with a group of students that followed the Minor “Promoting human rights in urban areas”. They will continue the training in the new semester, where the methods will be again multiplied.

Astrid showed a presentation of the fourth edition of a multicultural festival she organised in Brasov, Romania. She explained how they created a day with different activities, like cultural exhibitions, traditional music, costumes, dance and poetry.

Furthermore there were presentations of the interviews that some of the new participants did with migrants in their neighbourhood or work as a preparation to the training.

In the afternoon we went into the city on a Postcolonial tour in which we passed several landmarks in Amsterdam that remember to the colonial past and how Amsterdam has actually flourished and became very rich during the Golden Century because of colonialism. The wealth of the city is still coming from that past and is visible in different buildings, like for example the “Tropenmuseum” which was originally established as a colonial museum to show Dutch overseas “possessions” in the 19th century.

After the tour we ended up at the Vereniging Ons Suriname where we had a very impressive workshop on racism by Mitchell Esajas and Jessy de Abreu. For many participants this was a mind-opening workshop in which topics as racism, white privilege, social inequality, racial profiling and micro aggression became very vivid. Here you can find the presentation in PDF: