Journey to trust


The statement that cooperation requires mutual understanding and looking at things through someone else’s eyes might seem truistic; however, in today’s world, where communication is based on the exchange of information through social networks and difficult questions are answered in a simplistic manner, this statement is very often forgotten, making cooperation itself even more difficult. Since we do not know much about the lives and experiences of our interlocutors, we tend to perceive and judge their actions according to our own categories, notions, and ideas.


While on the individual level understanding the story and world view of someone else might seem to be a long, demanding process requiring efforts from both sides, but still – something feasible, communication on the level of nations or social groups is a far more complex process, which requires a bigger involvement not only of politicians and scientists, but also of ordinary people.


Poland and Germany are close neighbours; however, despite this geographical and cultural closeness, both nations keep each other at arm’s length. In recent years, many people have travelled to visit their neighbours on the other side of the Odra river, making a significant step towards getting to know each other. The visitors go sightseeing, taste traditional dishes and beverages, but is that really enough to be able to understand their neighbours?


Our project aims to go a step further. Together with a group of Polish-German musicians, we would like to set out on a journey to the sources of mutual understanding. Different workshops on historical empathy, overcoming prejudice, looking at our differences with humour, and on the importance of mutual understanding for the creation of our common future will be stops on this journey, as well as the performance of a musical concert programme, the Mass of Trust, written by the talented young composer Zuzanna Koziej especially for our project.


By opening up our concerts to a wider public, we hope to extend the young musicians’ experience beyond the concert halls and workshop rooms. The young musicians will become messengers of the sign of peace to remind the audiences and all of us that what we have in common is stronger than what divides us, and that mutual trust, though not easy, is possible. We believe that music is an appropriate medium to deliver this message by means of the power it has to unite people who, although speaking different languages, all use the same language of music.


We are convinced that cooperation and friendship are the basis for a peaceful future of both nations and we hope that our project will be a visible sign of unity and hope and will bear long-lasting fruit.