Presentation, reading of the Schuman Declaration, conversation with its peer and for the finale - "Ode to Joy"

The team of the Contemporary Pleven Media Foundation successfully started the activities under the project "NEW Schuman Declaration – Cross-Generational Conversation about a NEW Europe" (acronym - nEU dec)", with a live lesson in front of more than 100 students from 8th and 10th grade of National School of Arts (NSA) "Panayot Pipkov" - Pleven, on April 21, 2021. It took place in the hall "Bozhko Shoikov" of the school and was filled with musical performances of talents from NSA - Pleven.
„NEW Schuman Declaration” is the foundation's first major European project, moreover as a coordinator. It is funded by the "Europe for Citizens" Programme of the European Commission, strand "European Remembrance", and is held in 4 EU member states in the period February 2021 - July 2022. Partners are Educommart, Athens, Greece, Asociacion of innovation, formation and employment for the sustainable development (AIFED), Granada, Spain, and the Autokreacja Foundation, Warsaw, Poland.
Project „NEW Schuman Declaration – Cross-Generational Conversation about a NEW Europe” connects the past and the present to give young Europeans a powerful tool for building the future. The tool is the memories and lessons from the past 70 years.
By talking to peers of the 1950 Schuman Declaration, of the accession of their countries to the EU, and of the changes in Central and Eastern Europe since 1990, young people will complement the lines of history textbooks with the experiences of "ordinary" people.
That is why an important moment of the first event of the project - "Meeting of Generations: a conversation about Europe - 70 years in 70 minutes", was the story of the peer of the Declaration of Robert Schuman – the opera singer, director of Pleven Philharmonic, honorary citizen of Pleven, Lubomir Dyakovski who, thanks to his profession, has been traveling all over Europe since he was 19 years old.
The meeting began with the performance of the anthem of the European Union - "Ode to Joy", by the little violinist Sofia Ivanova, a student of Elena Nikolova.

The Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Contemporary Pleven Media Foundation, Ivanka Vateva, welcomed the audience and presented the idea and goals of the project. One of its tasks is young people, and not only they, to get acquainted with the full text of the Schuman Declaration, which everyone has heard about, but few have read. A flash mob of reading the Declaration was made from the stage by three students majoring in "Acting for Drama Theater", with teacher Georgi Enchev: Boyana from 8B, Victoria from 11B and Plamen from 12B class at the host school.

A specially prepared presentation presented the history of attempts to unite Europe - since the Middle Ages to the 20th century; the birth of the idea for the European Coal and Steel Community as a way to stop armaments and wars; the biography of Robert Schuman; the historical date May 9, 1950; and the reactions of the European countries through the eyes of caricaturists.
To mark the star moment for Bulgaria - our accession to the EU on January 1, 2007, a popular composition by a Bulgarian author sounded: "Rachenitsa" from "Thracian Dances" by Petko Staynov, performed by percussion ensemble "Accent", led by Simeon Serafimov .

After the young percussionists who have conquered more than one stage in our country and in Europe, in front of the audience stood the European Lubomir Dyakovski. Mr. Dyakovsky shared with the young people memories of his first travels, impressions of both West and East Berlin, touching personal stories from divided Germany.

As a musician, he has been very interested in the history of the European anthem and, in addition to sharing little-known facts about it, he provoked the students with questions about Karajan's role and the relation between the EU anthem and CDs.

The dialogue with the audience continued with a quiz. The questions in it were based mainly on the held presentation, but also required a demonstration of awareness and general knowledge: Who is the author of the text that Beethoven uses for the Ode to Joy? How many countries are there in the European Coal and Steel Community? How many are the stars on the European flag? What do they symbolize? How many official languages are there in the EU? And do you know how many and which are the alphabets? Why the 9th of May is Europe Day? What is the single emergency number in the European Union? In what year did Bulgaria become a member of the European Union? Was our country accepted into the community on its own? Which Fathers of Europe can you name? What Nobel Prize has been awarded to the EU?

Some of the questions made it difficult for the audience, but for some there were several raised hands.
Those who responded correctly received a notebook with the project logo as a reward.
The end of the 70-minute meeting was set by the re-performance of "Ode to Joy", this time by a string orchestra of 5-8 grade, with teacher Denitsa Zlateva. The young violinists, violists and cellists were joined by their teachers. And the whole audience joined the choral performance of the ode to the text translated by Asen Raztsvetnikov, printed on a flyer for the event.

Two volunteers of the Contemporary Pleven Media Foundation - Alexandra Koncharska and Snezhana Dimitrova - provided important assistance for the successful holding of the meeting.
Project „NEW Schuman Declaration” continues with the announcement of an essay and drawing contest, the creation of a puzzle room and competitions in it, and an international conference in Pleven, scheduled for May 9, 2022.