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In Iceland, over 60 refugees and asylum seekers participated in the project

4. 3. 2023

Ukraine, Venezuela, Iran, Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan, these are just some of the countries from which the participants of the next part of the Be Part! project subtitled Be Part of Elegía delle cose perdute came. It took place in Reykjavík and the nearby agglomerations of Reykjanesbaer, Kópavogur and Hafnarfjordur. 

Refugees and asylum seekers who were currently living in Iceland were approached in cooperation with local partners: the Red Cross, Youth Center Hammarin and Reykjanesbaer Town Hall. Through the online form, over 130 people of fifteen different nationalities expressed interest in participating. Due to the current situation in the world, the largest group was from Ukraine and Venezuela, followed by the countries of the Middle East.


Rehearsals took place in several work groups in Reykjavík and Reykjanesbaer and in two music groups in Reykjavík and Hafnarfjordur. A total of 63 participants regularly attended exercise and music seminars. 

Italian choreographer Stefano Mazzotta was in charge of the artistic direction together with his group Zerogrammi and a group of ten performers from the Czech Republic and Iceland. Czech-Icelandic cooperation was also reflected in the musical direction, when the rehearsals were conducted jointly by Linus Orri and Vojtěch Lavička. 


After the first week of cooperation, the project participants tried out a public performance at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Kópavogur. Their Work in progress took place directly in the premises of the Traicing Fragments exhibition, where they performed together with professional performers. The performance was part of the Winter Lights Festival and received great response and emotion from the audience. 

Elegía delle cose perdute

The final performance of Elegía delle cose perdute was given in Reykjanesbaer on February 11, 2023. Reykjanesbaer is a city of approximately 20,000 inhabitants, located near Keflavík International Airport and the town of Ásbrú, where the US military was based for more than 60 years. Reykjanesbaer is thus the city that has been under the greatest foreign influence in Iceland for decades. Bringing the show here was such a great opportunity to highlight those roots and present migrants in a new light and integrated into the wider community. 

Iceland is a sparsely populated country, so in the local dance community you don't often see dozens of performers at one time, the large number of performers in the large space of the hangar in the center of Reykjanesbaer gave the event additional uniqueness and importance. 

Artistic work with refugees in Iceland continues

Two of the Icelandic artists who took part in the project as professional performers are now working with the Red Cross to find ways to continue the work and to include refugees and asylum seekers in artistic creation. 

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