Denmark's ''Opera in the Middle'' begins Write a Science Opera activities

Published: 27/04/2015

What is your role at Opera in the Middle?

I lead the ''Children and Youngsters'' department.

How did you hear about the Write a Science Opera (WASO) teaching method and the CREAT-IT summer school in 2014?

I heard about it through the European Network for Opera and Dance Education (RESEO).

Why is it interesting for you to explore whether WASO activities may be relevant in Denmark?

I believe that children have very different work processes that work for each one of them. I've had experience with working with children in theatre productions in which I have seen the creativity and ''thinking out of the box'' that they are able to reach when presented with the right tools. Furthermore, I find it interesting, as an artist, to work with our skills and tools in a different setting than the theater setting. It's very fulfilling to see that these tools can be used for looking at/working with science in different ways.

In many ways, I find science and opera are common in that they are often put on a pedestal, as something difficult to understand and scary to approach, but in this way of working with children, you take both science and opera down from the pedestal and make them natural, fun and hopefully not scary to approach in the future.

Could you tell me about some specific plans to implement WASO in your country?

We are working towards 3-week WASO courses for schools in Denmark. Besides that, I have developed WAS'OP (pronounced ''Whas'up''? short for WASO-Presentation), which is a 1-week workshop in which we use the same pedagogical method as in WASO, but the students use them to do a ''living presentation'' of a science topic which they have worked on beforehand. They make use of the music-dramatic tools to present their topic in a new, more creative way. We have just received funding for our first WAS'OP in the autumn of 2015, and we expect to do 2-3 more also this autumn, all as pilot projects to prepare for an application for more consistent national funding.

 

Besides this, we are participating in the ''SkyLight - a Global Science Opera'' project as the Danish representatives.

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