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Next Stop: - Art Close to People

EEA-project 2020-2021 with "Pocztówka cultural association" (project leader) and Studium Actoris (partner)

The general goal of the project is to improve access to theatre and to culture for as wide an audience as possible, including marginalised groups, as well as to improve the audience’s competence. This will be accomplished thanks to international cooperation of artists and by including the society into the debate, this includes – local government, minorities, schools and non-governmental organisations.


The specific goals of the project are as follows: 

– create an innovative show available to a wide public;
– develop artistic cooperation between the „Poczówka” Association from Poland and Studium Actoris from Norway;
– increase the competence of the „Pocztówka” Association and other Polish entities regarding the culture industry; 
– implement a cultural entrepreneurship strategy and an audience development strategy;
– to bring two towns – Hajnówka, Poland and Fredrikstad, Norway closed together and to establish an international partnership between the two;
– increase the activity of  Hajnówka Central, Cultural Station and "SUFUS" (Studium Actoris' own educational program) as centres of artistic, educational, social and volunteer activity.

K4/U21/b: Fredrikstad (NO)

 Studium Actoris /  2021

What is happening in Norway during the project?

February 3rd at 13.30 Studium Actoris and Pocztówka cultural association invited to a digital press conference, where the Mayor of Fredrikstad and Hajnowka along with actors and project leaders were presenting the project to the public from a political, artistic and EEA-funding view. They also responded to any questions relating to these topics from those present at the press conference.

This is the different modules of the project that are scheduled to be held here in Fredrikstad (due to COVID-19 dates are TBD): 

1. «Audience development and CRM»

Kulturfangst AS is a cluster organisation of cultural institutions based in the lower Viken-area. The cluster's aim is to sell tickets to performances in the region of Viken, and to provide communication and marketing services through strategic collection, analysis and use of customer data and statistics. In collaboration with researchers from the University of Agder the organisation has researched and developed a system for ticket sales and CRM solution. This workshop will give the participants an overview and introduction to how they can utilise these systems in order to promote audience development. 

2. «Design Thinking, entrepreneurship and early stage start ups» - Applying an entrepreneurial mindset to culture and theatre

Entrepreneurship and culture have many similarities, such as being on show and delivering something of value to customers/the audience. In this workshop we will develop the skills needed to understand your audience. We will focus on defining what your audience wants, who is your audience, and more importantly who is not your audience. We will experiment with generating different ideas, and building new ways to view artistic projects. The workshop will be hands on, and interactive, and we look forward to having everyone involved. By the end of the workshop you will have a clearer idea of who you create value for, what value they would like, and how to deliver that value. The workshop will be held by assistant professor Matthew Patrick James Lynch and professor Dr. Gunnar Andersson from Østfold University College.  

3. «Good practices and strategies in development of the cultural industry»

This is a two-day workshop with the Cultural Office of Fredrikstad and other cultural institutions in Fredrikstad, where the focus will be on showing how processes work and how things are done in the cultural sector in Fredrikstad. The participants of the workshop will be meeting with the Chief of Culture and Mayor of Fredrikstad and visiting different other cultural institutions run by the municipality and the county.

August - November 2021 (might be postponed due to Covid-19 travel restrictions): There will be rehearsals and production of the show "Dance" with both Norwegian and Polish actors. The final outcome will be a theatre-dance show inspired by the music of Frédéric Chopin, but interpreted through the rhythm of the tango. 

K4/U21/a: Hajnowka (PL)

Kulturforeningen "Pocztówka" /  2021


"Pocztówka cultural association" ("pocztówka” being the Polish word for "postcard”) was founded in 2004 in a small village in the Podlasie region, near the Poland-Belarus border. However, its focus is the whole of Poland and even internationally. The association brings together independent creators of theatre, but also photography, music and dance. Members of the association also form the theatre troupe A3Teatr - www.a3teatr.pl/

The goal of "Pocztówka cultural association” is primarily to organise artistic activity in remote regions, far from cultural centres (for more than 10 years they have organised the "Wertep” International Theatre Festival in Podlasie communes). It also serves to educate and activate local communities. Every year, it presents tens of shows and more than ten projects related to art education. Other activities of the organisation focuses on promoting environmental protection, the Białowieża Forest and the safeguarding of local cultural heritage. Each year, the association also accepts volunteers as part of the European Solidarity Corps programme.

The last, and most important undertaking of the Association is to renovate the former railway station. It will house a local cultural institution ran by NGOs, called Hajnówka Central, The Culture Station. It is here that initiatives forming the project will take place.

The project coordinator on the Polish side of the project and part of the association is Agata Rychcik-Skibiński - manager and culture animator. 

What is happening in Poland during the project? 

Our Polish partners and project leader have already startet hosting different workshops relating to the project. In January 2021 they held two workshops that focused on audience development and cultural entrepreneurship. The first one was held by Agata Etmanowicz and "Pocztówka cultural association" describes the workshop like this: “The audience is not a fourth wall, they are not consumers, and theater is not a commodity. The viewer wants to react, co-create, feel part of the performance "- we knew all of this, but after a series of training sessions on "Audience Development" conducted by Agata Etmanowicz, we realized it even more!

The last workshop was conducted by Andrzej Smoliński fra 4C - Centrum Ekonomii Społecznej from Szczecin where the focus was on how to create a business plan and how the association can operate sustainably.

In addition to this the rebuilding and refurbishment of the old train station known as "Hajnowka Centralna" is coming along nicely. Through the colloboration between "Pocztówka cultural association", renovators and volunteers from the European Solidarity Corps-programme they are closer than ever to bring the old train station back to life as a vibrant cultural institution.

More information about the modules in Poland will be published along the way!