The Erasmus orchestra debuted on Sunday 7 May in the “Teatro della compagnia” in Florence. The orchestra is composed of 40 Erasmus students, from 20 Music Conservatories and Institutes all over Italy. They were conducted by maestro Elio Orciuolo, and played together with the musicians of the “Maggio fiorentino” Academy.
The event inaugurated the three days of celebrations for the 30 years of Erasmus and was dedicated to the memory of the 13 young women who died in last year’s street accident near Freginals, in Spain. The event was participated by the Italian and foreign relatives of the victims. The evening was presented by Leonardo Canestrelli, journalist and speaker of Radio Tuscany.
The concert was anticipated by the greetings of the three National agencies: Erasmus+ Indire; Ang and Inapp and by the Deputy Mayor of Florence, Cristina Giachi. The Minister of Education Valeria Fedeli was also present and met the victims’ relatives.
The Minister declared: «We need to make a commitment at European level in order to extend Erasmus participation also to those students coming from families in economic difficulty. I made a commitment to submit the issue to the Education committee of the European Council and I’m going to do it, because I consider it important, just as I consider important to introduce the Erasmus programme for the last years of secondary school». «I consider of great importance – continued the Minister – to open the celebrations for the 30 years of Erasmus, by commemorating the death of the young women who sadly left us more than a year ago. In remembering that tragic event we need to engage to enhance legal protection for the students abroad through a European insurance network».
«During these 30 years – Sara Pagliai, coordinator of the National Agency Erasmus + indire added – Erasmus has very much changed: in 1987 only some two thousand students from all over Europe, participated; while now 6 million people have joined the programme. The world was different in 1987: there was still the Berlin wall, Europe was divided, there weren’t low cost flights. Now we are in the United Europe, offering many possibilities, even though it is experiencing many crises. We need to restart from Erasmus to relaunch the idea of Europe».
Erasmus created a European management team – said Cristina Giachi, Deputy Mayor of Florence – It was a revolution which set Education and training at a European level. My dream is Erasmus for all European citizens, not only for students, in order to offer the chance for training and study in another European country also to those who didn’t go to university. We dedicated the Festival of Europe to Robert Schuman and his famous sentence: “Europe will not be made all at once”. To make Europe gradually, much study and commitment is needed. I think that Erasmus emphasises this aspect. The necessity of creating Europe and European citizens taking the time necessary, working, studying and accumulating knowledge».
«Our girls were happy when they left – told Giuseppe Scarascia Mugnozza, father of Elisa, one of the girls who died in the road accident – they died in a tragic accident while they were coming back from a cultural experience within the Erasmus activities. This tragic human loss must enhance the attention dedicated to our European youth, citizens of tomorrow».
The Erasmus orchestra opened the concert with the National Anthem, continued with opera areas and symphonic pieces from Mozart, Verdi, Donizetti, Mascagni, Puccini, Bizet and a medley on the notes of “The prayer” by David Foster and “Halleluja” by Leonard Cohen, to conclude with the “Ode to joy” from Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. The evening continued with the performance “Erranze” by the National Dance Academy of Rome.
Erasmus at the Festival of Europe’s programme continues in Florence on Monday 8 and Tuesday 9 May, with a rich programme of meetings, conferences, exhibitions, and free concerts for everyone. The concluding event, the concert of Sergio Sylvestre and the Street Clerks in S.S. Annunziata square will be on Tuesday 9 May at 9pm.
Information and programme at: http://festivaleuropa.erasmusplus.it
Official hashtag: #Erasmus30