top of page

Talks Programme 4: Social & Political Urgencies

In this talk we listen to the people who inspired the creation of the summit - the alumni of BNCN's Leadership Programme, New Horizons Leadership Programme (NHLP) produced by Cirkus Syd for the network in 2020-2021. Together with three of them, we will talk about current social & political urgencies: how they are connected, how to deal with them, and what should be done/changed.

In the first part of the talk NHLP alumni Marina Rieger will:

  • make an introduction to what is social and economic sustainability (GlobalGoals, value-based company)

  • discuss how “climate change needs system change” and how is circus trailblazing in arts & culture

  • talk about models to manifest future skills in artivism (interactive moments for note-taking)

  • share personal experience of regional-public-private & independent commoning, from Swedish and German projects.

Marina Rieger focuses on the urgencies we face in our societies from a social and economic perspective, based on the agenda 2023 and UNESCO SDG’s for culture and arts.

Professionals in the independent performing arts have developed models to manifest value-based work in the arts and creation processes that overcome product-focused funding schemes. Drawing from her learning journey with NHLP in 2020/21 through recent project examples, Marina invites the audience to become aware of the artivist agency we can transform in the circus and performing arts to act as trailblazers in facing political urgencies of our world.

In the second part of the talk, NHLP alumni Elena Kosovec will discuss how to be an artist during the war, including:

  • personal introduction

  • summary of the current Russia-Ukraine situation and why Baltic countries are so involved in it

  • moral aspects of speaking about political urgencies through art, a brief analysis of historical context - art as an escape vs art as an act of activism

  • examples of artworks created in Lithuania since the beginning of the war

  • summary and call for action.

NHLP alumni Elena Kosovec focuses on the current political situation in Ukraine, its impact on the art field of the Baltic region, and the choice that artists face - speaking about the war through their art or creating an escape to support society’s mental health in order to endure the crisis, analyzing the current situation as well as the historical context.


Nika Parkhomovskaia, a writer, producer, researcher & curator with a wide knowledge of contemporary Russian and European theater/dance/circus. Has great experience in organizing international festivals and theater collaborations, making performances and projects with non-professionals. In total produced more than 50 performances, international and national festivals, site-specific, participatory, new circus, applied theater, New Horizon’s and social dance labs as well as video dance festivals, screenings, and residencies. From June 2022 is based in France where continues to collaborate with all kinds of minorities and keeps her work sustainable and politically engaged.


Marina Rieger (she/her) was born and raised in Berlin/Germany and relates to the topic as a NewHorizon’s Leadership Program alumni.

She holds a BA from Humboldt-University Berlin in Nordic Studies and Cultural History and Theory and implements her work within contemporary circus arts in her current MA studies in Performing Arts at Stockholm University of the Arts.

From growing up with social circus in Berlin and touring as a performer, she currently freelances as circus producer for Zirkus ON ( and advocates for the development of circus arts in Germany with the German Circus BUZZ (

Elena Kosovec is a contemporary circus artist from Vilniu s, Lithuania. Her main discipline is aerial rope. She started practicing aerials in 2015, learned rope technique in various courses and schools in Barcelona, Turin, and through continuous individual practice and research. In 2016 together with a couple of other circus artists, she created Taigi Cirkas company. Since 2018 Elena has been the head and co-founder of the Contemporary Circus Association of Lithuania, running educational and creative projects for circus professionals. In 2019 she obtained a circus dramaturgy certificate from ESAC (Belgium) and CNAC (France) circus schools and started working as a circus dramaturg.


bottom of page