The public performance The School of Narrative Dance (SOND), a large-scale participatory project centred on empowerment, inclusivity and creativity as social driving forces, took place in Malta at the end of last month. 

SOND offered free workshops in Malta with choreographer Maria Fonzino ahead of the main performance, at Blitz Valletta and the Casino Maltese.

The open call to participate was available on Blitz’s website and social media ( and shared through flyers and word of mouth for three months through the collaboration of the Malta Council for the Voluntary Sector.

Marinella Senatore's artwork <em>Remember the First Time You Saw Your Name </em>on the facade of the Casino Maltese.Marinella Senatore's artwork Remember the First Time You Saw Your Name on the facade of the Casino Maltese.

To date, SOND has seen over six million participants in 24 countries. It features participants of every age and background, with no previous artistic experience, as well as artists from disciplines as diverse as capoeira, hip hop, breakdance, tango, flamenco, ballet, opera, pop music, gymnastics and much more.

During the local event on June 30, Żebbuġ B.P. Band set the rhythm as passers-by were invited to join the artist and the artistic procession to reactivate our shared public space, from the street to the buildings, in a one-of-a-kind celebration of rebirth and community-making.

Senatore is a multidisciplinary artist who delves into practices of non-hierarchical learning and participatory art. Over the years, she has explored forms of resistance, vernacular and popular culture, dance, music and activism, in order to rethink the political nature of communal action and reconcile individuals and collective bodies.

To do so, she experimented with radio broadcasts, street festivals, operas, musicals and processions such as The School of Narrative Dance (2012-ongoing), centred on the emancipative power of storytelling, agency and public action.

Senatore's exhibition Something About You, currently on at Blitz, is a 10-year survey bringing together paintings, drawings, videos, a powerful project with Russian protest group Pussy Riot featuring a new organic site-specific sculpture.

The exhibition also a public artwork on the historical façade of Valletta’s Casino Maltese.

Remember the First Time You Saw Your Name (2020) is a powerful phrase in a bold red light composition dominating St George Square, Valletta, for the duration of the exhibition. The artwork is an enchanting blast from the past, evoking the Maltese custom of celebrating community during village festas and annual events with festoons, luminarie and light installations.

This exhibition is intended to inspire dialogue in Malta, at a time when collective action seems to be the most effective tool for new beginnings and the birth of communities.

As put by bio-political philosopher Judith Butler: “Freedom does not come from me or from you; it can and does happen as a relation between us, or, indeed, among us.”

While emphasising the stories and hidden potentials of individuals, Senatore does not distinguish between so-called low and high culture, and embraces the power of decontextualisation to open up conceptual windows into an ever-changing humanity represented in plural form.

Something About You is open by appointment until the end of July within the following hours: Wednesday to Friday, 2 to 5pm; Saturday 10am to 1pm.

To schedule an appointment, e-mail

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