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La Soffitta | January - June

SOCIALIZING CULTURE

Starting from the 2019 season, the sections of La Soffitta Center – cinema, dance, music, theater – are integrated by two new sections: visual arts and history and society. It is a significant change, which highlights the particularity of our Center. La Soffitta is, in fact, a university institution organically connected to the Department of Arts, and it reflects and elaborates contents and transformations of the Department. The Department of Arts was born in 2012 and it is the fusion of the Department of Visual Arts and the Department of Music and Performing Arts, of which La Soffitta was already an internal section; in 2018, the new Department has included a section dedicated to historical-social studies and, in 2019, all the sections of the complex reality of the Department are finally grouped together in the new structure of the Center.

This expansion, however, is not only the effect of the institutional changes, but shows the ability of the “system” of La Soffitta to assimilate, adapt and relaunch. The project is included in a university context which is in close relationship with research activities and demands of the student world: nonetheless, our Center has never been detached from the city. On the contrary, the need of getting cultural processes closer to society and obtaining integrated training and planning has indeed sparked solutions that have anticipated, since the Nineties, the trends of theatrical programming, where the combinations of events, laboratories, meetings and moments of reflection have become widespread.

Regarding the projects related to the Centre, we have also talked about applied research. It is a practice that does not identify schematic models, but rather extends the research regarding the arts by activating projects that relaunch acquisitions through events, debates, meetings, popularization, training and direct experience. The operational field affirmed by these paths is the context in which the programs of the new sections have now been included, leading to changes in balance and perspective. More than thirty years after its foundation in 1988, La Soffitta once again retouches its profile, integrating socialization of cultural processes into applied research practices. The intention is not only of sharing the knowledge of artistic paths, but, as we can see in the presentation of the Mercoledì di S. Cristina, “to show the vitality and the richness of perspectives with which research and teaching are carried out”. To achieve an overall socialization of artistic practices and cultural processes, different activities are being developed. First of all, initiatives in collaboration with different realities: from MAMbo to the Cineteca, from the Municipal Theater to Emilia Romagna Teatro Fondazione, from the Festival Vie to the Saggiatore Musicale. Furthermore, interdisciplinary dialogues have given rise to several projects: the presentation of Clementina Casula's book Diventare musicista. Indagine sociologica dei Conservatori di musica in Italia (Becoming a musician. Sociological investigation of music conservatories in Italy, 2018) and three conferences that oscillate between artistic disciplines and media studies (VHS+. Video e televisione fra analogico e digitale – Video and Television between Analogic and Digital), sociology and theater (Audience Development), aesthetic experience and ecstatic alteration (The Body in Performance).

Finally, I would like to mention two initiatives that indicate different ways to deepen the socialization of cultural processes: I classici in classe. Rassegna di musica d’arte delle scuole in università (Classics in the Classroom. Art Music of Schools in Universities), and Quadri in cerca d’autore (Paintings Looking for an Author), an original format in which four teams of students face each other in the game of attributing a painting. A special mention must be granted to the project Intorno alla giornata della memoria, which includes the show La Notte by Teatro delle Ariette and films proposed by the Jewish Museum of Bologna and Cineteca. It is by focusing on the connections between research and the civil context that the socialization of cultural processes can become a means of active citizenship.

Also this year the launch of two brochures has been planned: one concerns the activities planned from January to June, the other concerns projects scheduled from October to December. There are many initiatives, and we have to thank those who make it possible to conceive and make them possible, from the Magnifico Rettore Francesco Ubertini to the members of the Academic Bodies who did not leave us without support and attention, to the Assessori alla Cultura of the Emilia-Romagna Region and of the Municipality of Bologna, Massimo Mezzetti and Matteo Lepore, which make it possible to promote La Soffitta activities in the broader context of the cultural realities of the territory.

Considering the public taking part in the projects, the January/June 2019 program presents multiple workshops: journalism and criticism, choral and instrumental music, dramaturgy of the actor, body and voice, creative use of the audiovisual repertoire, creation of an archive of video portraits, curatorial practices of the artistic sphere. Some of these laboratories are independent modules, others are integrated into projects dedicated to artists also analyzed by La Soffitta in terms of artistry and thought. Marked by maieutic presence and centrality of the artists are also the seminar held by Giuseppe Roberto, musician and shepherd from Messina, the conference by Michelangelo Pistoletto La comunicazione del Terzo Paradiso (The communication of the Third Paradise), the projects on Italian dance, on Compagnia della Fortezza, on I Sacchi di Sabbia and on the playwright Lucia Calamaro. Among the performances, besides numerous theatre ones, we recall the cycle of five concerts organized by the music section. The program also inherits from the visual arts section the prestigious program of cultural events I mercoledì di S. Cristina. Particularly important are the conferences, often inscribed in consolidated investigation paths, defining specific traditions of La Soffitta, such as the eleventh edition of the international conference Media Mutations. Media, Diplomacy and Soft Power and the annual meeting of pedagogy and music education.

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