The Danish Broadcasting Company (DR) arrived in Liverpool this weekend with their mission- to produce a television-series around Europe, visiting each member state and discovering the views of the people on the EU.
Along with the flm crew, two members of the European Parliamant, Dan Jorgensen and Morten Messerschmidt joined the team to pose those indepth, searching questions.
Dan was a pro-EU and Morten an EU-pessimist.
Their objective on Saturday morning when I met them, was to look at opposition against the EU and they wanted to see the Polish community in Liverpool. They particularly wanted to discover how the Polish people were actually contributing to society.
We felt that a visit to the Liverpool Polish Saturday School in Old Swan would be very interesting and positive. It would be a story that would show the Polish community’s awareness and feelings of responsibility to intergrate youngsters in the British society, while keeping a cultural heritage in mind.
Well, we were right!
On Saturday morning, I had a particular class of 13yr-14yr olds, that I teach PSHE to. Thats Personal, Social, and Health Education. We discuss all things political, topical, historical and geographical for 30mins, as a warm up before their actual formal curriculum lessons. On this occasion, they had the best lesson ever. The film crew entered the classroom, very informally, along with the producer and MEP’s who made themselves at home with their jokes. They sat on the “little” chairs infront of my group, who were all seated on the carpet and then, bombarded the children with a torrent of questions which they superbly answered.
I was delighted with the childrens responses to questions about the EU and how they, and Britain, might fair when entry controls are lifted at the end of the year, especially when Bulgarian and Romanian immigrants arrive.
What do you think about voices that fear for more immigrants in the UK?…. seemed to be the one question pressed more often to the children.
Questions about their likes and dislikes in a foreign country, what they miss most?, Is it easy to get new friends?….. what they feel they will contribute to the society here?….searching questions…about what challenged them upon arrival?…but they all had an answer and didn’t shy away from any. The crew delighted in the filming of a traditional Polish dance in full costume, courtesy of the after school Cultural dance club.
Their visit took them to experience the delights of a Polish shop and the taste of Polish meats and confectionery.
In all, they truly gained an “experience” and had their questions answered in full, both from the staff, parents and children who were all interviewed on the day.
I would like to thank Dorthe Gad Thuemoes and her team who certainly gave us an “experience” in Pan European relations.
The morning was an unforgettable experience for both children and staff.
Liverpool’s Threshold festival is back bringing more bands with bigger and better art installations.
This irrepressible young festival will once more run amok all over the Liverpool Baltic Triangle taking in a great many of the city’s best loved venues.
This favourite Multi-Arts Festival with three days of treats pouring out of Camp and Furnace, The Picket, Elevator Bar and the many Baltic Creative venues, will have an additional two afternoon fringe festival FREE at the Albert Dock.
This multi-venue, grass-roots festival has a programme packed full of goodness with over 180 performances and artists geared up to give you Alternative, Electronic, Folk, Hip-Hop, Metal,Pop/Commercial, Punk, Reggae, RnB and Ska.
Right from the start, Threshold’s ethos has been to engage with the arts, music and performance promoters, and provide them with a platform to create and explore.
With a line-up featuring Frances Wood, Natalie McCool, Dominic Dunn, Robert Vincent, beans on toast, and Paddy Steer, the scene looks good.
On the Mainstage in Camp and Furnace, the line -up is JC Villafan from LA as part of his European tour and a Soul inspired hypnotic Coffee and Cakes For funerals who were named repeatedly as a band to watch this year.
On installations, the festival has never had better. Speaking to the wonderful Liverpool Art Prize winner Robyn Woolston, she tells me that she will be returning with a new, top secret installation ahead of her forthcoming exhibition at the Walker Art Gallery.
Artists Charles and Sam will create a bespoke exhibition which they describe as “echoing Arnold van Gennap’s tripartite concept of liminality” Yes, well, maybe the Egg Cafe will enlighten you with some interactive moveable art walls and the brilliant Pam Sullivan returns with revisits showing her triumphant Biennial piece Unterschlupf from last years St Lukes Church.
If you know the Camp and Furnace area then be prepared for a shock as a superb forest of found items will be created with a tunnel through which festival goers will travel from the Camp to the Blade Factory.
This will be a mega event of escapism, transformation, and collaboration this weekend……be there and get involved but above all enjoy!
Tickets from webticketmanager, Skiddle, Camp and Furnace and Made-Here Shop.
Children’s literature goes through fads and phases, with some of our greatest children’s writers like Blyton, Dahl, J. K. Rowling with the Harry Potter books, and now the Twilight series taking readership to thousands of children on the back of a TV and film series.
It’s good to get back to some of our legendary authors once in a while, and this happens with good stories and wise moves from our film industry.
C.S.Lewis wrote The Chronicles of Narnia series of seven fantasy novels, set in a world of magic and talking animals, between 1947 and 1954. They are still popular today.
They have sold more than 100 million copies in almost fifteen languages.
The recent ‘Nania Experience’ at St Georges Hall between February 11th-23rd brings the winter wonderland story alive to all. This is a great experience for our children to have, but I would urge all you budding Narnians to familiarise yourself with the text before a venture to St George’s Hall. Teachers will certainly prime their classes with the characters from the novels well before a visit.
Two years ago, St George’s Hall was transformed into a Nania winter wonderland, and the organisers, In Another Place, planned another production.
During the Hope Street Festival in September, I spoke to some of the stage crew advertising the event and they were hoping to beat the 2011 number of visitors of 17,000 with this one.
A recent visit to the set certainly gave the impression they were up for it this year.
They told me then, that the new version would return with a walk through the forest having just minor alterations to the set and script.
Well, they have exceeded themselves this time, and will certainly bring joy and imagination alive to the hundreds of school children and visitors alike, who will take a stroll through this experience.
Today, visitors will step into a wardrobe of fur coats at 15 minute intervals and stumble upon a wintry forest of 80 pine trees (real).
The public take on the roles of either child character Lucy or Edmund, and follow the story meeting Mr Tumnus, Mrs Beaver and The White Witch.
From, fantasy, imagination and fantastic mystery, young families with children aged three and upwards will be enchantered by the experience. Our little ones will meet Mr Tumnus in his snowy forest, and the White Witch in her castle, giving them a treat only ever experienced in the past with the likes of a department store Christmas grotto circa 1960 with all the elf trimmings.
Knowledge of the story is helpful to fully appreciate the realisation of the passage taken on this tour, but clips from the recent film version help move the action along, as you are guided through the different settings.
Yes, you can join Mr Tumnus at his cosy fireside and see the Beaver’s Lodge, then step across the stones to Aslan’s camp, via the Witch’s castle, that’s if you have chosen Edmunds path.
Enjoy the visit by booking on Tel 0151 924 4468 or www.inanotherplace.com