Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Define "Culture" [Intern Intro: Aurélie]

By Aurélie Rouveyre, Arts Administration Intern.

Seven years ago, I was standing in a theatre looking at a group of almost 30 acting, singing and dancing students on a stage for the first time in their lives. I remember how happy and emotional I felt when seeing all these children express themselves through the performing arts. But, above all, I was proud of having succeeded in realizing one of the projects I cared the most about: creating my own children’s musical. Sharing my passion for the performing arts made me realize that this was probably one of the most important moments of my life; not only because I had the feeling that one of my dreams finally came true, but also because it gave me a sense of direction. I realized that what I really liked wasn’t to be on stage myself, but rather to allow others to perform. 

I danced ballet, jazz and contemporary dance for a long time and I was really dedicated. More than teaching me discipline, effort and work, it was a means to express myself. I cannot describe with words how much dancing brought to my life, maybe because I am a dancer and not a writer, but what I am sure of is that dance was a big part of my life… a personal fulfillment. 

People used to ask me, especially in interviews or oral exams, to define the word “culture.”  And, I think that throughout the years and because I’ve been close to the art, on and off the stage, I did not find THE answer, but for now, my answer would be this: culture is nothing but a means to express oneself, to share ideas and feelings. 

This is why I can’t separate the arts from culture; I can’t imagine the arts without social impact. In fact, if culture is a means to express oneself, everybody should be able to experiment in the arts. I am currently involved in an association called “Astuce-Lycéens” which aims to help students from disadvantaged backgrounds through lessons and art road trips, exposing them to opera, theatre, museums, etc. Currently, this association is giving me the same purposeful meaning and fulfillment that dancing once gave me. But actually, this is not surprising; it is just the logical continuation of all that I have done. After having received so much from dance, I felt a need to give back to others. I want others to also find a way to express themselves and enrich their personal lives.

In my quest to promote culture, I am building my future by taking an internship at the beautiful Auditorium Theatre. Living abroad, in a country like the United States (where I believe people don’t experience culture as easily as in Europe), I am eager to learn more about other ways to ‘manage’ culture and promote it. I love working at the Auditorium Theatre because it has a huge commitment to promoting the finest performances in the word, especially in dance. I have the great opportunity to work in a real open-minded environment where everyone is allowed to express themselves and I am gaining an understanding of how an arts organization works. But, above all, I am glad to be here because this fabulous opportunity allows me to grow and value differences.

Art should be for everyone, I hope I never lose that thought. This is merely because after a long day of working on my projects, I always end up feeling so inspired, this is what keeps me going on.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

culture is nothing but a means to express oneself, to share ideas and feelings . . . in a country like the United States (where I believe people don’t experience culture as easily as in Europe)

Careful, the US is quite a diverse place with a range of different cultures depending on what part of the country you're in. Making a broad generalization like that does it a great disservice.

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