Internationalism in Action

From Somerset to Slovenia...
From Somerset to Slovenia…

Every year we take Bridgwater people to our European partner towns and bring back over here folk from many nations, celebrating our internationalism, contributing not just to peace and understanding around the world but also to our mutual local economies. This week it’s Slovenians.

One of our most successful projects involves music. And in particular choirs. Everywhere seems to have a choir these days. A prime example is the Voice of the People choir run by natural voice practitioner Yvette Staelens. Every year we take them to a different country to sing and often they make friends and then their friends come back here.

From Slovenia to Somerset...
From Slovenia to Somerset…

Last year they went to Slovenia, the northernmost country of the former Yugoslavia, and stayed at the lovely alpine town of Bled where we have strong links and have taken many groups-students, footballers and general tourists. They sang in the mountain top medieval castle, they sang on the side of the lake and they sang in the town hall.

This week their partners Musica Viva from the nearby town of Kranj (twin town of Bridgwater’s French twin town La Ciotat!) are here in Bridgwater and will be taking part in several events – including paying a visit to Bridgwater Fair.

Saturday 1st October-Bridgwater Arts Centre

Crucially the 2 choirs will be performing together at the Bridgwater Arts Centre on Saturday October 1st. Tickets are available here (or on the door). Or just turn up -it’ll be a good night and all the money raised goes to the Art Centre as a donation on the occasion of their 70th anniversary. Both choirs will be singing separately and together and it might even inspire you to join up and go on one of these trips yourself. Yvette’s oft repeated phrase is ‘everybody has a voice and so everyone can sing’.  To find out how VOP’s trip to Slovenia went click here.

Singing by the lake (in Bled)
Singing by the lake (in Bled)

The show starts at 8pm

Of course the Art Centre was set up 70 years ago to inspire and encourage exactly this. People getting involved in the arts. We’re so lucky in Bridgwater to have the country’s first such art centre. Come along on Saturday night to see creative community arts for the people in action, and make a point of visiting the art centre several times during October to see what they do as there’s a host of special events for their 70th year. Click here to find out more.

Sunday 2nd October-The Engine Room

bw-togetherOn Sunday 2nd October the Slovenian choir will be singing at the Bridgwater Together event at the Engine Room on the High street.

This event is now in it’s second year and celebrates the multi cultural diversity of Bridgwater. Running from 11am to 3pm and including food, live music, face painting, story telling, poetry, international film, simple animation,zoetrope and more ‘for children and adults alike’. There’s no need to book, just turn up, drop in check it out.

The event is being supported by the Town Council, Bridgwater Trades Council, Bridgwater International, Unite Community, TUGA productions, Meet your Muslim Neighbours and Somerset Film.

Make sure it’s supported by YOU too.!