All the young people were asked to join the « Military walk ». A nice exchange starts beetween beginners and more experienced dancers. 20 of the participants walk together, knees up, shouting and designing finally a pyramid, while the hip-hop music ends. Then the space is left to the mouvement theatre group, working on short choreographies by two or three people. The subject of this performance is to move on from classical to contemporary dance : very different gestures are used within the same piece.

Crédit image : Maud Roditi

It’s time for the discovery workshop of classical dance, led by Caroline Lemière. The participants who improvised themselves as choreographers – sometimes with so much energy and willing !- are now wisely moving on to the proposed exercices.

« Bravo ! You are very concentrated, but no need to show it on your faces… No stress ! » recommands Caroline. To lead them all to more free and independant mouvements, she asks to leave the barre. They now have to redo the imposed legs exercice, but instead of being static with their arms, to improvise with them.

Place du Monument’s project

The previous day, the group in charge of the installation in the square described its conception to the all participants. The enthousiasm was shared by all ! As early as nine o’clock, five of them go to the forest of Creyssac and in the little valley there collect hundreds of wood sticks. Meanwhile, another team is tracing on the ground the design of the future installation. In the afternoon, with the help of the technical services of the town, the young people starts to carry the wooden sticks : a hard work along a chaotic path ! To end up, they lift down all these building materials of the project in the parc.*


Today, participants worked on their future performances. They were preparing « military choregraphy » by one rythmed danse and jarky moving. Then, a commun bigger group was working on life statue theme. After a walk during each of them progress in his one direction, performers make two lines face to face and start a mime game. Their gestues individual at first change in an harmonious mouvement.

During that time, an other group was working on a theatral performance. They have choosen to work on Visa issue and how is difficult to get one, a very topical subject. Even if the fact that the egyptien and tunisian feel more specificly the reality of that issue, they do not want to stop analys at the North / South border and choose to develop direction out of time. Actors of that project imagine a scene taking place in Consulat with visa applyers and addministratif staff. A devil turn start. They have to one by one collect several papers, fill it and submit it to the administrative agent. Papers are flying over on a guitare melody going faster and faster.

Crédit image : Maud Roditi


The implementation of a project goes through discussions, workshops, but before all the participants have to know how to work together. This is why the Bulgarian participants inspired by their theatre knowledge proposed different games for concentration and improvisation.

In the afternoon, the group went to the Place to think about the installations. From now on, one group will work specifically for the plan and the model, and other groups to collect and assemble the construction materials like posts, threads, fabrics, etc.

The participants are planning to set up a fairway of multiple entrances and exits, and use the poles and benches. In the interior of the structure will be placed the labyrinth with only one entrance and exit. While entering this space, people will be surprised by the puppets, the living statues and the mimes. This performance will be screened through the use of a camera placed above the construction with an instant projection that will attract the curious visitors. The group wants to use this installation to question issues of imprisonment, intercultural encounters and creations that the participants were debating about the two previous morning.


The day before , the organisers and the representatives from each group gathered around to exchange and accelerate the  concreteness  of the project. They decided to make small groups by mixing all the disciplines and nationalities. This morning the participants are divided in five small groups to talk and exchange ideas about the occupation of “Place du Monument”. The elaboration of constructions and performances take form in a lot of different themes and topics. The first stage of the debate in the group starts with two questions: what will be the theme of the performance and how can we make it? This is one of the first steps of the creation and after there is the debate between the participants and at the end is the presentation of the idea front of the other teams.

First group decided to work around the theme of “Breaking borders”

To found their theme the second group decided to wright individually words that inspirited this gathering , and after to translate them in the other languages. based on this list of those words, they extracted the concept and the key words. The terms of uniting, the bridge, the war and the freedom led to the theme « The mixing of the society »;more concrete the group  decided to use the houses around the place and to construct installations which will show the difference of the « visual signs » of the different cultures. using the work of the workshops of oriental dance and hip hop, the dance performances should integrate in this mise en scene.

To find their thematic, group 2 decide to write befor individually some words, inspired by this meeting, then to translate each of them in their own language. With this list, they take concepts and key-words. Words like unity, bridge, war, liberty lead to the theme « miscegenation in a community ». Concretly, the groupe wants to use the buildings around the square and to built themself some installations to show the difference of ‘visuals signs » in different cultures.

Using the work during the oriental dance, hip-hop workshops, the dance performances will be integrated to this direction.

The third group thought about the theme « Communication without borders ». They decided to look into their differences and they wanted to make it together. The labyrinth construction was seen as the symbol of the divided space, the public is invited to discover the different sights. This space is in the field of exchange, but it is difficult to pass threw. To get the attention of the public and the dynamics of this space, the participants decided to place one camera up above the construction and to project in the same time what is happening inside the labyrinth. Like the first group they decided to invite the children to help them get of of the « borders » that are keeping the back. The differences of the culture are symbolised by the body painting, alphabet signs are traced through the bodys of the participants. The language barrier is metaphoric and its missing is represented by photo exposition: faces even if they are different , even though they do the same thing.

Concerned with the theme “Accept one another” the fourth group thought how to make the connections  in the group: with the body, or with the art. One of the participants from Egypt proposed one debate for the reasons of understanding between Europe and Africa in the religious and political way. The group decided to put in the public space acting improvisations placed on the main stage, which is a method to listen to the other and interact spontaneously. The topic of the impossible love from “Romeo and Juliet” is one of the ways  to look at the history and to place it in the performance nowadays.

The fifth group work with the theme “Fear of change”, and they want to put their performance also in the labyrinth. Placed in the figure of a circle they repeat the same movement while watching  one of the group who is sitting in the centre and playing  guitar. At one moment he stops giving the signal to have some kind of change in the group. Then it starts a thing called “Arabic telephone” where the participants imitate one another mixing movements, voices, and sounds.

The richness of all the propositions made the organizers and the participants really enthusiastic, the point is to start immediately to harmonise all the performances by placing them in the space and transforming it .

In the afternoon there were workshops for acting leaded by one of the Egyptian participants and Pilates from a participant from Denmark.

Crédit image : Maud Roditi


Differents workshops were organized to encourage the exchanges and start a creation process : hip-hop, salsa, pilates, discussions…

Crédit image : Maud Roditi

Then, we started to discuss under the look of Marc Féraud. He’s the creator and the master builder of roman inspiration public garden « Hortus », in Arles; international Olympiades expert of the landscape  painter profession, he is really interested to share his experience to young people. During the discussion, he insists on the importance of confronting the reality of the ground with  obstacles, contraints and assets. Marc Féraud hopes that space visualisation will bring a concretisation of the participants ideas who will have to propose some lists of supplies, draws or models.

So, then we go on the square, which is called « La place du monument » and which the participants will have to invest during the « Fête de la Gentiane », next saturday and Sunday. We discover the space we will dispose in agreement with the local organisation. When they see the flowers in the trees, some of the participants have the idea to make a symbolic use. Others imagine to separe the space with a border to represent the sea, « Mare Nostrum » which separe europeens and mediterraneens. By crossing this space, the participants could then mix them in artistics performances. However, this proposition creates a debate : the objective of the meeting is to mix people from differents origins, so it seems paradoxal to some participants to recreate borders in this space !

Atelier de salsa. Crédit images : Maud Roditi

An idea emerges then : a labyrinthe, elaborated with panel walls transparents or opaques, where the artists could crisscross each other, hide and meet. Marc Féraud makes the suggestion to create scarecrows frightening or laughting, and to insert them into the installation.

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In the frame of the Young europeens and mediterraneens meeting, 50 young people and animators from  Europe and Nord Africa come to join the local organisators from the 3rd to the 15th of july 2012 in Riom-Es-Montagnes, and the 15th to the 23 of july in Chalinargues . Based on volontary participation and personnal initiative, this meeting has for objective to build a common space, the central square and central place will be invested, decorated and promoted thanks to the differents competences.

Young people interrested in the fields of architecture, photography, dance and acting have been sollicited to lead this interdisciplinary project.

« Mare Nostrum », latin expression meaning « our sea » is from the roman period when Europa and Maghreb were not different territories but formed a common space around the mediterranée. The sea wasn’t a border, but a place to exchange. It’s one of the most important objectives of the meeting : start from diversity of each person to make a collective artistic creation.

The blog, log book of the project, has the vocation to tell day by day the progression of this initiative , with the artistic but also human issues.


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