Photo via Grips Theater Personal Reflections from a Tandem Participant Ossama Helmy (Origami, Alexandria) has participated to Tandem Shaml in 2016-17, and partnered with Lydia Ziemke (suite42, Berlin) on FOLD YOUR WORLD - Personal freedom and political responsibility in Egypt and Germany. He now shares a couple of thoughts (and advice) from his own Tandem experience. On visas and travel I am used to going through the visa process, many times, over and over again. When I came to Berlin for my placement, I was very frustrated that they hadn’t given me a visa for a whole year, but just for three months. In Berlin, during our workshop about the meaning of freedom, I met Abbas from Iraq. During the break, I told him my story about the visa. He then told me his story: he had walked for two weeks from Iraq and finally arrived in Germany as an illegal immigrant. It blew my mind for a moment - I definitely have a privilege being an artist and having invitations and regular visa to travel and move across the world. In a way, Origami is my passport. And now that we are in Berlin every few months to play the show, I now have a visa for one year! Photo by Lydia Ziemke On Love In Alexandria, we have a legendary party flat. There, after the start of the Tandem project, I met a nice girl. We liked each other from the first moment and I was telling her about my work, my art, my Tandem project. And I told her, that my partner was coming to Alexandria soon (Lydia was just preparing for her placement). Unfortunately, she understood “my girlfriend” and so she assumed that I was not free and she lost her interest in me. So, please take my advice and always be clear when you talk to potential lovers about your Tandem partner!