After the students and teachers of University of Theatre and Film Arts, Budapest (SZFE) occupied their university building for 71 days in autumn 2020 to fight for the freedom and independence of the university, the Freeszfe Society, an independent creative, educational and cultural space, was founded in February this year.
Former and current students, teachers and staff of SZFE work together here autonomously and democratically in a free atmosphere of creative work and education. For example, they run the educational programme „Emergency Exit Program“, which is a cooperation on a European level that won the European Citizen Award and enables Freeszfe students to successfully graduate.
Robert Wilson, Theatre director and member of Akademie der Künste in Berlin supports the movement: “I consider it my civic duty to state that I do not agree to the gutting of educational and artistic independence and freedom, nor to the unhealthy concentration of too much power and influence in the hands of a few” – Robert Wilson; Paris, September 17, 2021
At the moment, the members of the Freeszfe Society do the work necessary for the survival of society without any compensation: they teach, manage, plan, organise. Moreover, students who have left SZFE and joined Freeszfe have lost their benefits – their scholarships, their health insurance and the possibility of a student loan, which used to be guaranteed by the state. Freeszfe also faces the challenge of finding permanent premises in Budapest for the future.
A fundraising campaign is currently underway. Any support that the Freefsze Society receives will help the students with their exams (films and productions) and secure them some scholarship: