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European programme awakens young people to cultural heritage

16 Dec 2022

This Thursday, 15 December, in the Swan Room of the National Palace of Sintra, the presentation of the results of the Erasmus + programme "Between Mnemosyne and Terpsichore – Heritage and Contemporary Dance for the promotion of critical thinking in young people" took place. Supported by the European Commission under the "Partnerships for Creativity" programme, the project sought to promote critical thinking skills and creativity among secondary school students aged 14 to 18 through visits to National Palaces, with the mediation of contemporary dance.


The partnership, which began in 2021, involved the National Palace of Sintra; the Wilanow Palace-Museum in Warsaw; the Monte da Lua School Group in Sintra; the LXXXVI Liceum Ogólnokształcące im. Batalionu "Zośka", from Warsaw; the contemporary dance association Meet Share Dance, based in Madrid; and the Portuguese company byAR, specialising in the development of applications and solutions based on immersive augmented reality. The joint work of these six institutions, which received European funding of around €300,000, enabled a total of 100 students to benefit from this project, which resulted in eight contemporary dance workshops; two final site-specific dance performances; two student exchanges; and two exchanges for professionals from the palaces participating in the programme.


This presentation session featured interventions by representatives of most of the partners involved and testimonies from some students of the Monte da Lua School Group who participated in the project.


Surveys carried out among the young people involved in the programme indicated very satisfactory results with regard to stimulating interest in the history of the palaces, which for about 40% of the participants increased considerably; and with regard to the perspective of students on these monuments, which changed completely for about 30%, while 40% stated that their vision changed considerably.


The event also included the presentation of the Descola Programme, an initiative of the Lisbon City Council's Culture Directorate and EGEAC that also combines schools, heritage and the arts.


Before the debate that closed the programme, a technical guided tour of the new museography of the National Palace of Sintra was held.


The project "Between Mnemosyne and Terpsichore – Heritage and Contemporary Dance for the promotion of critical thinking in young people" is expected to be finalised in February next year. At that time, two new visitor guides for young people will be made available, one for each participating Palace, and a new digital application with augmented reality will be presented, aiming to stimulate critical thinking through games based on the same themes explored in the dance workshops, establishing bridges between the National Palace of Sintra and the Wilanow Palace-Museum.

PNS Erasmus Int PSML Jose Marques Silva