Speech commemoration day – may 4th 2012 – Spring Agora Enschede

This is the speech I held for the 800 participants of Spring Agora Enschede, coming from all over Europe. The respect they showed during the following two minutes of silence, but mostly after these two minutes was impressive and touching.

Today. it has been 67 years since World War 2 ended in the Netherlands. After  the war, European leaders gathered to start a European cooperation. This was the start of the unification of Europe and therefore the beginning of a development that eventually enabled the birth of AEGEE.

Each year at the 4th of May, everybody in the netherlands is silent for 2 minutes to remember all war victims since world war 2. In recent history and even now, there are still countries in confict. Recent examples are the situations in Iraq, Afghanistan, South Sudan, and even conflicts in Europe, on the balkans or the caucasus.
In a few moments, our trompetist will predecent the two minutes of silence. We would like to ask you to respect these two minutes of silence.

Remember all victims of military conflicts, remember what we as Europeans strive for. Especially in AEGEE, an organization that is looking ahead.
We have to take in mind the lessons of the present and the past in order to be able to look ahead. To be able to move AEGEE towards the future of Europe.

Remember the victims, praise the freedom you have to be here, the freedom to contribute to a peacefull Europe.

Project Nisto

Nisto is a folklore dance project for younger people. Within the project, Folklore dances were choreographed on new composed folklore songs based on folklore from the balkans. To promote these dances, many workshops were given throughout the country, amongst which two workshops on DoeDans Festival, by far the largest folklore dance and music festival in the Netherlands.

Nisto started as a try-out of five dances, with Kay Krijnen as composer and me and Paul Verhaar as choreographers. It became a success, a much bigger success than we expected. So for the second series, we created a larger group of choreographers, and contacted several small folklore orchestras to play our music. Our experience of the first series was shared and used while me and Paul coordinated the choreographing process.

Nisto was the first project I set up myself, and I never stopped working on extra-curicular projects since. I learned loads, on the organisation of such projects, folklore dancing and choreographing and working in voluntary teams.

After 6 years, we closed the project and all continued on our own paths, in music, dancing and studying.