Project description

Igor Stravinsky’s “Firebird”, first community dance performance in Romania, was presented to the public in Bucharest and Sibiu as part of the International Festival “George Enescu” in September 2009. The Association “Jungen Rumänen eine Chance!” introduced this new artistic and social concept into Romania with the aim of integrating underprivileged youngsters into society through the implementation of an artistic common project with youngsters from very different backgrounds and abilities.
The organizers initiated and realized this project with the help of numerous voluntary relatives and friends who accompanied, sustained and shared the life of the youngsters during the entire project. For the local coordination and promotion of the project they contracted the firm “If Magic”. One hundred and ten young people between 11 and 22 years with no dancing background whatsoever nor specific physical abilities came together in a spectacular contemporary dance performance to put on stage Igor Stravinsky’s “Firebird”. The participants came from very different backgrounds: orphans as well as children from prosperous families, children with special needs as well as high achievers selected by the organizer and coming from a variety of institutions (NGOs, schools and high schools) in Bucharest, Brasov, Sibiu and Ploiesti. The only selection criterion was their motivation and desire to take part in the project. The youngsters were trained by the choreographer Royston Maldoom (UK), known for his countless artistic and social projects around the world, and by Josef Eder (Germany). Romanian choreographer and dancer Irina Roncea and junior assistant Oana Rotariu were part of the team.

In what respect was the project innovative?

The project was the first of its kind in Romania in so far as it required and developed enormous physical, emotional, cognitive and social competences absolutely new to most of these youngsters. The project required a constant adaptation to new situations:

  • new environment (Bucharest, youth center, stage)
  • youngsters from different backgrounds and abilities
  • dance and classical music,
  • concentration, group work and common responsibility

How is the project linked to the theme of 20th century European memory?

Community dance breaks barriers. It facilitates access to creative expression of all kinds of people in a community, regardless of class, age, ability, gender, sexual orientation or race. The process is more important than the performance itself. It gives all participants the opportunity to discover themselves and the others, to redefine dance and break boundaries.Community dance helps people understand values such as Respect, Tolerance and Cooperation and offers all participants a unique opportunity to create.Community dance values diversity, identifies the right part for everyone - equally important as everyone else’s- showing that, in art, just as in society, the contribution of each human being matters, as long as he is given a chance to perform in an appropriate context.

Further information

Project sources:
Blog about the project:


Monique Gruber
Association “Jungen Rumänen eine Chance!”: