Novi Sad International Conference

Be SpectACTive!


International Conference

22-23 March 2022

Novi Sad, Serbia

Save the date: the 22th and 23rd of March, in Novi Sad, it will take place the international conference “Youth Deal on Cultural Participation in Europe”, organised by the Institution Students Cultural Center (SKCNS), one of the leading public institutions in the field of youth culture in Serbia. It is realized in the framework of the second edition of Be SpectACTive!, a large-scale European cooperation project – co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union – which is focused on audience engagement and operates in performing arts through artistic productions and participatory practices. The conference is also supported by The Ministry of Culture and Information of the Republic of Serbia, the Foundation “Novi Sad – European Capital of Culture” and the EU-funded project, Perform Europe.

The international conference aims to critically address the stereotypes on youth and youth culture and to inspire the implementation of innovative youth cultural participation approaches that will be able to meet the needs of new generations.

It will be a combination of workshops, panels and theatre shows.

The programme includes the presentation of two of the Be SpectACTive! co-productions and of two dance performances realized with the use of VR. Some panels will be held both offline and online, according to a hybrid format that permits to reach more people.

Analysing the youth culture several important trends come to light: lack of financial, spatial and human resources; lack of youth involvement in creating cultural programmes; thematic and narrative stereotypes about young people that are often not in line with their needs; lack of interest of most artists and decision-makers in youth culture and certain underestimation of young people; media disinterest in youth culture. Of course, there are exceptional enthusiastic individuals supporting youth cultural participation but most often without any systemic support. Taking into consideration the above it is clear that new approaches to youth cultural participation are necessary, besides the obvious need for increasing financial resources, active involvement of young people in the processes of creating programmes and arts, improvement of themes and narratives, increasing the representation of quality youth culture in the public media space. Also, it is necessary to think and create a new model of understanding culture, that is in line with the needs of the modern global information society.

The speakers, moderators and participants involved come from all the corners of Europe too. They are young people, youth workers, artists, policy makers, producers and professionals working in the fields of youth and/or culture and interested in the topic of Youth Cultural Participation in Europe.

Among the participants: Minja Bogavac (dramaturg, Reflector Theatre, Belgrade), Milena Dragićević Šešić (UNESCO, ECF & Council of Europe expert), Carles Feixa (Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona), Guido Van Hengel (writer, lecturer and historian), Marko Pejović (Group “Let’s…”, Belgrade).

Also, cultural operators from different sectors and several countries such as Per Art Association, Žarko Sebić (The Good People Orchestra), Nordeous Foundation, Tatjana Nikolić (Rock Camp for Girls), SKCNS Active Spectators; representatives from European organisations such as Advisory Council on Youth CoE, EACEA, European Youth Forum, KOMS, ECoC projects.

The conference is also a part of the opening of the “Future of Europe” programme within the European Capital of Culture – Novi Sad 2022. The programme is dedicated to the promotion of culture for children and youth.

“Youth Deal on Cultural Participation in Europe” is the third of four conferences planned within the Be SpectACTive! project. The first was held in Montpellier (FR), the second in Sansepolcro (IT) and the fourth will be in Lisbon (PT) on September 2022. Conferences covered different topics tackling cultural participation.

Shows in programme, co-produced by Be SpectACTive!

2GETHER/AL(L)ONE is a project by the choreographers Johannes Randolf and Jerca Rožnik Novak. It was co-produced by Plesni Teater in Ljubljana, Dublin Theatre Festival, Gothenburg Dance and Theatre Festival and Bakelit Multi Art Center in Budapest. It’s an interactive solo dance performance, focused on the feeling of being left alone. It deals with the idea of the need to keep things, people, situations the way they are or bring them back to the original state after they got shifted or broken.

ASSIMILATE is a work by Sonja Stojanović, Ljubomir Nikolić and Máté Czakó. It is co-produced by SKCNS in Novi Sad, Bakelit Multi Art in Budapest, Occitanie en scène in Montpellier, Tanec Praha. Assimilate is a multidisciplinary production on the topic of assimilation using VR technology in fusion with music and dance. It is done in the format of an interactive theatrical adventure game.

The working language of the Conference is English, no translation shall be provided.


21st of March 

From 16.00 I Registration and Welcome Drink

17.00 I SKCNS Fabrika

VR Show and aftertalk: Igor&Moreno – Perform Europe, Aerowaves Ringside

20.30 I SKCNS Fabrika

VR Show and aftertalk: Superfluous – EN KNAP Slovenia

22nd of March

10.00 – 10.30 I Official opening: Obrad Škrbić, Marija Popović (SKCNS) – Giuliana Ciancio and Luca Ricci (Be SpectACTive!)

10.30 – 11.15 I Keynote speaker: Milena Dragićević Šešić (UNESCO, ECF & Council of Europe expert)

11.15 – 11.45 I Tea/Coffee break

11.45 – 14.00 I What are the cultural needs of the young generation?

Workshop moderated by: Minja Bogavac (a dramaturg, Reflector Theatre, Belgrade), Guido Van Hengel (writer, lecturer and historian), Irena Topalli (Tirana European Youth Capital 2022), Marko Pejović (Group “Let’s…”, Belgrade), Jelena Stojanović (NAPOR)

14.00 – 15.00 I Lunch break

14.30h – 15.30 I International press conference in SKCNS Fabrika @Gallery of SKCNS

16.00 – 18.00 I Looking for youth participationgood practices of youth participative culture in different sectors 

Panelists: SKCNS Active Spectators, Dalibor Šandor and Frosina Dimovska (Per Art Association), Tatjana Nikolić (Rock Camp for Girls), Žarko Sebić (The Good People Orchestra), representative of The Nordeus Foundation

Moderators: Giada Calvano (University of Barcelona) in collaboration with a representative of Serbian active spectators group

20.30 – 22.30 I Show: 2GETHER/AL(L)ONE (Plesni Teater Ljubljana, Slovenia), co-produced in the framework of Be SpectACTive!

23rd of March

Morning Session:

10.00 – 11.00 I New approach to culture? What kind of culture do youngsters participate in?  An anthropological perspective

Keynote speaker: Carles Feixa (Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona)

11.00 – 11.30 I Tea/Coffee break

11.30 – 13.30 I Media and new media influence in creating culture trends? 

Workshop and panel discussion

Panellists: Tamara Urošević (journalist Istinomer), Nikola Bešlić (director I wanna go to theatre/Hoću u pozorište), Angela Calvini (journalist, Avvenire), Ivona Kukić (journalist, Radio Active Zenica)

Moderators: Luisella Carnelli (Fondazione Fitzcarraldo) in collaboration with a representative of Serbian active spectators group

14.00 – 15.00 I Lunch Break

15.30 – 17.00 I Hello Europe!? Cultural policy and youth – where are the young people in the policy debate?!

Panellists: Walter Zampieri, Head of Unit Culture (European Education and Culture Executive Agency – EACEA), Diana Tepavac, President (Assitej Serbia), Milica Rašković, Head of the Programme Development Department (Foundation “Novi Sad-European Capital of Culture”), Miljana Pejić, Secretary General (National Youth Council of Serbia/KOMS), representative French Institute in Serbia

Moderators: Giuliana Ciancio (Be SpectACTive!), Emmanuel Negrier (University of Montpellier) 

– Hybrid format (online offline)-

17.00 – 18.00 I Legacy and conclusions

Lluis Bonet (University of Barcelona), Luca Ricci (Be SpectACTive!), in collaboration with a rapresentative of Serbian active spectators group

20.30 – 22.30 I Show: Assimilate, (SKCNS, Serbia), co-produced in the framework of Be SpectACTive!