The first Joint Staff Training Event taking place in Gijon, Spain, from 11 to 14 February 2020 represented not only a success for all project partners, but a good example of how the world of human relations is closely intertwined with that of art and social theatre.

The topics on the agenda led participants to investigate the state of the art about the professional figure of social theater operator and describe the related requirements, attitudes and tasks to perform that role according to the experience of the different European countries involved in the project. Each participant was actively involved in a highly creative working session lasting four days, which allowed everyone to throw light on those human and artistic processes implying the meeting with the other.

Participants to the Joint Staff Training Event organised by Magenta Consultoria in Gijon unanimously decided to focus on creative processes linked to social theatre rather than analyzing more theoretical aspects of the discipline. As a result of group cohesion and shared commitment, significant progress was made in relation to scheduled project tasks and future steps were established.

The training event included also a group visit at the Higienico Papel Teatro, a theatre created with the aim to strengthen artistic creativity and community integration. For all participants it represented a highly stimulating experience. The tour in Espacio Talud de la Eria in the town of Oviedo further widened the training perspective as it provided for an excellent example of regional support to different types of entrepreneurial initiatives. Last but not least, the European Theatre Fair for children made the exchange experience in Gijon even more pleasant. Every year, different performances take place in various theatres throughout the city and are also staged in schools and centres of learning. One of the main aims of the fair is to highlight new theatrical works and to encourage promoters and schedulers to contract them.

The scrupulous monitoring of the project progress, the willingness to overcome common challenges and the opportunity to achieve the same goal, are in line with the founding principles of the social theatre operator’s mission. In a world which is longing for true relationships and real changes, the training event showed how human cohesion can overcome any divergence of opinions in the name of a culture of giving and solidarity.

This is only the first step: next appointment with the RESTORE project will be at the transnational meeting taking place on 22 and 23 June 2020. Due to the current pandemic, the event will be entirely online. However, the project does not stop as well as our work on the first intellectual output!