KA1 – Youth Exchanges
Samba Youth Europe
Samba Youth Europe is a youth exchange project between two partner organizations, Samba Ya Bamba (UK) and Samba Résille (FR), which have in common the organization of Brazilian music workshops invested as spaces of creativity, celebration of cultural diversity, social and professional inclusion of the most vulnerable young people and influence of the territories where they act. The partners, in response to the needs of strengthening the personal and professional skills of young people involved in musical learning and in the artistic adventure of their percussion groups, co-constructed a program of activities that planned two learning mobilities that took place in Toulouse in April 2017 and in Glasgow in July 2017. The program of activities targeted the learning of instrumental techniques, the acquisition of new musical repertoires, participation in a laboratory of experimentation and artistic co-creation, and organized times of dissemination in front of the general public of the work resulting from these youth exchanges. Each learning mobility lasted 6 days and gathered 24 young participants and 6 accompanying persons, all youth workers. Thus, 60 individual mobilities were implemented as planned in the application and allowed to deepen the artistic, technical and managerial approaches of the participants and to contribute to reinforce the quality and the internationalization of the socio-cultural animation projects of each partner organization. The unique pedagogical approach made room for creativity and was adapted to the needs of the participants; it integrated experiential learning through the Youthpass and by relying on the digital documentation created by the young people. This pedagogical approach allowed to reinforce linguistic, digital, social and civic skills, as well as to develop the spirit of analysis, initiative and enterprise of all participants. This project has allowed to identify transferable good practices, locally and in Europe, which will contribute to sensitize cultural enterprises to engage in non-formal training so that young people gain in mobility and permeability, and that local political authorities understand the strategic importance of the cultural sector in the creation of social and economic wealth for youth so that the creative sector becomes “an essential tool in a policy of exit from the crisis” as targeted in the strategy of the European Union for 2020. The European dimension of the project has allowed the cooperation between the partners to continue by opening up to other operators in Europe, particularly in the United Kingdom, but also in Portugal and Germany. Thus, this continued dynamic leads the two partners to design new cooperation projects that are in line with the 2020 strategy of the European Union, for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth and expanded to new partners for the benefit of a greater number of youth.
Samba Ya Bamba is a samba/street music collective based in Glasgow, Scotland. The group was formed in 1997 following a series of community workshops the previous year. Originally a percussion group, the band now includes a brass section and has also collaborated with singers and rappers over the years. Samba Ya Bamba’s main musical influence is Brazilian street music (samba, samba reggae) but the group has created a diverse repertoire by combining Brazilian rhythms and instrumentation with more dance-oriented rhythms, such as drum’n’bass, hip-hop, reggae, dub, as well as Cuban and Indian influences. Samba Ya Bamba performs regularly throughout Scotland, and elsewhere in the UK and internationally.
From April 4 to 9, 2017 Hosting of 15 Scottish youth and adults by 15 French youth and adults
– Participation in creative experimentation labs – Music master class Workshops/rehearsals Separate rehearsal times to refine and develop a repertoire specific to each group Joint rehearsal time: sharing of best practices, transmission of repertoire from youth to youth, supervision and pedagogical support by trainers and project leaders Sharing of 6 pieces
– Learning to teach young people – Workshop with young people with mental disabilities Meetings / transmission : Time of encounter with the handicap workshops of Samba Résille – General rehearsal before the public performance / Confront the common production to the public’s view
– General rehearsal before the public performance / Confront the common production to the public’s view Concert during the CinéMinots Festival at the Cinémathèque de Toulouse Concert at Place Saint-Aubin on Sunday to artistically close the project – Common repertoire of 6 pieces
– Meeting time with the association Samba Résille Concert of the Pagode to welcome the SYB Youth Band Common rehearsal with the adult troupe Samba Résille – Time for collective meetings
– Self-evaluation / Arts Awards certification: With the youth, assessment at the Bonnefoy Gardens / between trainers, small group time – Structured course on key competencies and didactic assessment tools developed specifically for youth involved in the creative sector.
– Cultural awareness: Visit of Toulouse via a partnership with the Tourist Office / Meeting times / informal visits / Picnic at the Japanese Garden / Visit of the city / Djoliba percussion store / Relaxation time at the Prairie des filtres / Time for conviviality / Common meal / shopping and collective cooking for the realization of the meals / Exchange of gifts and gastronomic specialities / Moment of collective celebration
– international dinner / Monday night party – to exchange around music
Elina: Beautiful group cohesion especially in Toulouse where we were able to welcome the young people at the CICC, Samba Résille’s space. The interaction was rarer and more difficult in Glasgow because the Scottish people were in school. The time spent together at the park in Glasgow and the Sunday concert were the moments that most encouraged the rapprochement between the two groups.
It’s too bad we didn’t play group games in the park to facilitate the interaction. I think that would have been necessary.
Yannick: At first I was skeptical about this trip with some apprehension about the meeting added to it the fact that I don’t speak English well. But I was very pleasantly surprised by the warm and highly friendly Scottish welcome. I didn’t expect that at all! The links were made quickly. It reopened my mind to the Batucada. It has strongly united our group internally. I struggled to talk, but I talked!
Ilona: Everything was cool even if we were exhausted! All the concerts were great and especially the Friday night because everyone was together. I shared a lot with the Scots… I communicated despite the fact that I speak very badly English. I came out more open to others and I would have liked the Scottish and us to be even more together. It was my first trip, it gave me confidence.
Ryan: At first, it allowed me to get closer to the group. During the game times I really enjoyed the moment when we joined the Samba Ya Bamba’s adult group in the middle of a party! This has developed something much stronger in our group than just a bunch of friends who see each other in a rehearsal. I loved the parade! I was able to fight my shyness during the games and during the interaction. The concert with 300 people was splendid! Managing the meal budgets and organizing around them was great, and it made me aware of some things about the organization of the trip. The meeting with Samba Ya Bamba in the park was a little long and soft, there was a lack of animation and initiative.
The Samba Youth Europe project was a wonderful first European experience for most of the young members of the Samba Youth Band. The results and impacts of the project are enormous for the public as a whole, for the young people themselves, for the other young people from the collective who are absent from the project, but also for the association as a whole.
For the project participants, it was achieved: • developing social and personal skills by communicating through creative activities; • increased confidence and self-esteem in public artistic proposals; • acquired ability for the development of future artistic exchanges; • greater ability of the young people to produce artistic work in information and communication technologies; • increased networking, strengthening partnerships and acquired skills through development workshops.
For the target audience, this mobility has: • consolidated their skills; • allowed to have a more global reflection on their artistic practice and that they feel tenure in their approach to get involved in European exchange projects; • developed in them the European dimension that their practice could take related to other young people from Europe and the world and that they have an interest in doing so in an intercultural context; • allowed, through encounters with other structures, to become the catalysts to develop this kind of desires with other young people; • enabled them to be international mobility ambassadors; • developed a willingness to learn.
For partner organizations, the project has: • reinforced their commitment to the project; • made more operational and better equipped to fulfill their roles as knowledge brokers and facilitators for the young people; • strengthened their capacity to offer spaces for artistic development at an European level.
The self confidence of all the young people from SambaYaBamba increased dramatically during and after our time in Toulouse. We had some young people in particular who were very shy and didn’t mix very much socially. Being away from home, with a group of their peers provided them with a unique opportunity to feel independent as well as allowing them to travel outwith Scotland (for many, this was their first trip) and to meet young people from Toulouse who had a shared interest with them. Our first workshop in Toulouse, led by Greg from Samba Resille, was an excellent way for the young people from both countries to get to know each other during the ice-breaker games. This was hugely beneficial for those within our group who were less confident in meeting new people, especially people who speak a different language to them.
Our group from Glasgow, normally meet just once a week to rehearse, with an additional performance once every 6 weeks. The exchange, and spending 8 full days all together with the participants and staff was really beneficial in allowing the time for the whole group to get to know each other better and strengthen their skills in patience and tolerance of others through being in close contact throughout the week. While this did lead to some tensions between some members, it also allowed them the opportunity to work through these challenges together with the support from staff to ensure the harmony of the group.