The ARTiculate Pedagogy Network organized three meetings in the last two years in order to co-create a long-term plan for BNCN and their partner organizations’ education cooperation and development for the years 2023-2026.

The first meeting was held in August 2020, the second meeting was held in Tallinn, October 2021, and the final meeting was in Lund, January 2022.

The purpose of the meetings was to share knowledge, dream, and work towards practical tangible plans for co-delivery. The aim was to be ambitious and dream big and work towards creating a strategic visionary plan to execute 2023 onward.

During these discussions, the following questions were placed in the spotlight and molded to fit the needs and possibilities of the Baltic Nordic Circus community:

Capacity building
For circus to survive it needs to keep growing through the generations. We spoke about the importance of how to involve younger generations past skill-learning, and how to support the existing practitioners. One of the biggest limitations for young people interested in circus is the lack of knowledge that it exists as a professional art form and beyond. How can the already existing circus practitioners inspire and educate at the same time?

How to support teachers
Teaching can be a lonely profession if there isn’t a strong community to support the growth and well-being of the teachers themselves. During the discussion, we started to map out an activity for teachers to gather and exchange their methods, learn from each other, and simply feel a part of the community.

Workshop tour
Skill sharing is an important part of any circus community. However, with the communities being quite small in some of the Baltic Nordic regions, there is a lack of accessible workshops in the area. One proposed solution for this was to create a workshop tour, that would reach even the smallest of communities.

Youth Summer Camp
Just like the practicing circus artist, the youth also need to be inspired and exchange knowledge within their own age group. An international Youth Summer Camp could create an environment for them to do these things, additionally forming an international community that could then go on to grow and collaborate together.

Spaces
We need professional artists to create a good circus education, and for professional artists to stay, we need spaces. How can spaces build international bridges? What is needed for them to become regionally significant and sustainable? We came to the conclusion that a collaboration between two spaces would benefit everyone involved, learning from one another as well as helping one another evolve. Acknowledging that the involved countries and organizations will have differing needs and desires takes us to our next point of interest.

Inclusivity
It is evident that the Baltic Nordic region still has a lot to learn when it comes to inclusive practices. While there is a clear desire to reach further, there is also a lack of knowledge. This means speaking to those who are themselves often not included. People from different ethnic backgrounds, genders, and those who are neurodivergent or functionally variant. While informing people was the most prominent direction, exposure to inclusive practices was also voiced as a necessity.

The end of these meetings marks the end of the current ARTiculate Pedagogy Networks planned meetings, but not the end of ARTiculate. We are working to now bring all of the ideas that we gathered and formulated to reality. Anyone who is interested to join the ARTiculte Pedagogy Network is welcome to get in touch with info@balticnordiccircuscus.com.

ARTiculate members: Rīgas Cirks (LV), FYCA (Finnish Youth Circus Association) (FI), Circus Studio Folie (EST), Circus Syd (SE), Hringleikur (IS), Karavan (SE), Teatronas (LT), Cirkulacija (LT), Acting for Climate, Arts Printing House (LT).

Photos by Alise Bokaldere, Cirkus Syd / BNCN

This project is made possible with the support of the Nordic Council of Ministers and Nordic Culture Point.

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