Podcast „Postcards from the Province“

Stay in touch – across closed national borders. With “Postcards from the Province" the project office Hi2025 is producing a podcast for the regions of Europe.

It is only three months ago that the Province Lab took place in the Hildesheim region. Experts from eight European countries were invited. The topic: Development of rural areas through culture. Together they went on a trip through the region in a fully occupied tour bus. In the evening they sat together – at a long table in a restaurant. It was a different time. A different, taken-for-granted Europe.

“We are witnessing just how precious this exchange is. This is especially true for the regions of Europe – we can learn so much from each other", emphasises Sabine Zimmermann, who organised the Province Lab for the Network for Culture & Local Traditions. After all, the challenges many villages and small towns in Europe have to face are similar – the withdrawal of social structures, abandoned village shops, too few doctors, ageing. “That's why we didn't want to stop our exchange – just because the borders between us were being closed temporarily."

This is made possible by the podcast “Postcards from the Province", actively supported by Radio Tonkuhle. Sabine Zimmermann talks again with the experts who visited Hildesheim in March. Very relaxed. Mostly half an hour, sometimes longer. For example with Froukje de Jong-Krap, a farmer from Leeuwarden in the Netherlands, who talks about the diverse landscape around Hildesheim and the possibilities of making art from it. Spela Težak, youth social worker from Slovenia, describes the difference between geography and lifestyle. How far the journey is – over 1000 kilometres from Ptuj to Hildesheim – and how similar the small towns and villages here and there are in spite of that. And Viktoras Bachmetjevas, a philosopher from Kaunas, even sees Sibbesse, where he was a guest in March, as the archetypal European setting. “If you're looking for the DNA of Europe, it's these small towns somewhere in the midst of Germany, Belgium or France."

“With our 'Postcards from the Province' we are addressing a European audience," says Max Balzer, responsible for public relations at the project office. “That's why the podcasts are published in English." After all, especially in these times, a European public and strong networks between the regions are essential.

“At the same time, our podcasts from the province should also show the diversity of the Hildesheim region," adds Anna-Lena Schotge. For this reason, the project office's designer travelled through the region with her camera and took very special postcard motifs that are being published with the podcasts.
“After all, the DNA of Europe can be discovered in our region," laughs Sabine Zimmermann. “If that's not a reason to write a postcard!"

Podcast „Postcards from the Province“

photos: Anna-Lena Schotge

Episode 1

In the first episode of our new podcast series, Sabine Zimmermann from the project office Hi2025 talks to Viktoras Bachmetjevas from Kaunas, Lithuania.

The philosopher and former cultural advisor for the ministry was a guest at the “Province Lab" in Sibbesse—"somehow the core of Europe".

It is about commonalities of Kaunas and Hildesheim, about treasures and self-confidence of regions beyond the general interest and of course about Sibesse itself.

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Episode 2

In the second episode of our podcast series, Sabine Zimmermann from Projektbüro Hi2025 talks to Froukje de Jong-Krap from the Netherlands.

Frouke is the organizer of the project “Potatoes go wild”, which played a major role before and during the European Capital of Culture 2018 in Leeuwarden. The discussion will focus on the great potential of cooperation, the unexpected possibilities that have arisen from the collaboration of artists and farmers, and the importance of getting into conversation with different groups. And of course it is also about the unused potentials of the Hildesheim region.

Episode 3

In the third episode of our podcast series Sabine Zimmermann from the project office Hi2025 talks to Igor F. Petković from Graz in Austria.

Igor is an artist and philosopher and spent three days exchanging ideas with people in Henneckenrode during our “Province Lab" project. The conversation is about sleeping beauties, new stories and new heroes, stereotypes, but also possibilities that city, country and neighbourhoods offer.

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Episode 4

In the fourth episode of our podcast series, Sabine Zimmermann from the project office Hildesheim 2025 talks to Špela Tezak from Ptuj in Slovenia.

By the way, Slovenia is the country that will be the second European Capital of Culture in 2025.

Špela is involved in youth work in Slovenia and spent three days exchanging ideas with people in Hildesheim during our “Province Lab" project. This conversation focuses on similarities and differences between Ptuj and Hildesheim and the potential of the places where we live here and now in this time.

Episode 5

In the fifth episode of our podcast series, Sabine Zimmermannn from the project office Hildesheim 2025 talks to Christine Sell from Huntly, Scotland.

We hosted Christine as a member of Deveron Projects. This project regularly organises visionary artistic projects in the small town of Huntly that are a strong motor for development of the town.
During our Province Lab Christine was a guest in Freden. The talk is about comparing the regions, about the value of places like these and about opportunities and obstacles of rural areas.

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Episode 6

In the sixth episode of our podcast series, Sabine Zimmermann from the project office Hildesheim 2025 talks to Omar Rajeh from Beirut, Lebanon.

Omar is choreographer and dancer and right now lives in Lyon, France. Sabine and Omar are talking about the value of traveling and about going abroad to focus locally. The talk is also about community building and the real needs of society.

Episode 7

In the seventh and last episode of our podcast series, Sabine Zimmermann from the project office Hildesheim 2025 talks to Anastasia Pashikhina from Barcelona in Spanien.

She is addicted to travelling and already visited 60 countries. Her main focus lies on rural tourism. Therefore, she took part in our Province Lab as an expert in tourism.

The talk is about the advantages Hildesheim has compared to metropolises and tourism hotspots. Both are also talking about what expectations visitors have and what needs to be done in the region of Hildesheim to meet these expectations.

By the way – Anastasia seems to know our region much better than our inhabitants and already planned her next tour.

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