‘A time for change’, Gen Verde kicks off UWW
Gen Verde International Performing Arts Group will open the United World Week with a concert “A time for change” on Saturday, May 1 at 9pm (UTC+2, Italian time), live on their official YouTube channel.
There is a lot going on these days at the Lionello Bonfanti Centre in Loppiano (Florence), a place of meeting for companies, associations and other realities oriented towards an inclusive and sustainable civil economy. In addition to the normal flow of clients and vendors, noticeable for their looks and instruments are the artists from Gen Verde International Performing Arts Group, who are working to assemble and set up the stage at their rehearsal space. There is a concert coming up, a special live show, that they are preparing for the next May 1, the opening day of the United World Week 2021. Choreography, volumes, projections, everything must be in place by Saturday, May 1 at 21.00 (UTC+2, Italian time), when they will stage “A time for change”, a concert all revamped for the occasion that will be broadcast live on their official YouTube channel.
Alessandra Pasquali, one of the artists of Gen Verde, tells us: “This concert will be at the Polo Lionello, where we have a large rehearsal room with a set-up that we haven’t used for a long time, because of the pandemic. We’re going to go on stage with our electronic concert, and so, with choreography, videos, there you go: we’re back on stage!”
What can we expect? “First off, the fact that it is all dedicated and designed for UWW, and in particular to the #daretocare theme. Also, because the pandemic has, in a way, accentuated certain types of issues and pains. And so, initially, with our songs we will try to respond to the silent cry of those who suffer next to us: from an illness, an addiction… but also to the cry of humanity. Then, songs dedicated to themes such as interfaith dialogue, political divisions. Finally, the cry of the planet, and it will be the first time we will be singing ‘Turn Around’ live!”.
“Turn Around” is the song that Gen Verde has composed and dedicated to the complex issue of the global social and ecological crisis, to the demands of young people, without losing sight of the beauty of our Earth. And the young people themselves, if Covid permits, will be the protagonists of the May 1st concert. “We’re going to do workshops with the young people who are here in Loppiano, to do an experience in the little town of the Focolare Movement, – continues Alessandra – to bring them on stage at the concert! We’re really excited about this, and we’re going to start the workshops in a few days.” A continuation, in a way, of the activity that has kept Gen Verde busy during the past few months, in which they have offered several theatre, dance and music workshops to the young people of this little town.
But there is more… This May 1, 2021 is a very important anniversary for Gen Verde, in particular, for Sally McAllister, the band’s current manager. She tells us, “I came to Loppiano for the first time on May 1, 1973, for the “May 1st Loppiano Festival”, a youth event that still continues. I was with a group of peers from my city of Belfast, which was being torn apart in a conflict that would last 30 years, causing thousands of deaths. We were a group of people with different opinions, the atmosphere between us was cordial but tense. I don’t remember the program, but the fascinating testimony of life in Loppiano and May 1st made the invisible but real barriers between us vanish. It literally changed the course of my life.”
This means that on May 1st, which is the day of “A time for change” and the opening of UWW, it will be 48 years since Sally met this reality that led her to change her life and then, to be part of Gen Verde… It may seem like a coincidence, but it is hard not to feel a certain excitement when you discover how powerful the life stories you come to learn from participating in the United World Week events can be!
Before ending…Gen Verde informed us that they are available, as in the past edition, to organize Zoom calls with young people from all over the world. Alessandra explains further: “There is absolutely that availability, as there has been throughout the year and as there continues to be! Because every week we have different Zooms scheduled! Those interested have a thousand ways to contact us: through our social media, or by writing to the email: firstname.lastname@example.org”.
In short, we are anticipating a smashing start to this United World Week 2021! While the pandemic changed everyone’s plans over a year ago, it also created opportunities for closer and more beautiful collaborations, like these!
So – mark it down – see you on Gen Verde’s YouTube channel, May 1 at 9 p.m. (UTC+2, Italian time).