Photographer:Fotograaf: Still from the YouTube clip of Treaty Ciao!
Bella Ciao – thanks to the Netflix series La Casa de Papel, this very old song was the summer hit of 2018. Since there are no copyrights to the song, hundreds of different versions have been made all over Europe. The Young European Federalists Maastricht – amongst them many students – decided to make their own version: Treaty, ciao!
‘Treaty’ refers to the Maastricht Treaty, which was signed in 1992 and established the European Union. “We are not saying goodbye to it, but we think not enough has been achieved since then,” says Thilo Buchholz, president of YEF Maastricht, initiator of the project and UCM student. “Originally it’s an anti-fascist song, written by Altiero Spinelli, one of the founding fathers of the European Union. Of course, no one cares about that on the dance floor, but I wanted to refer to the origins of the song by combining entertainment with a political message.”
YEF strives for a more transparent Europe with stronger rights for its citizens. “We believe that we need a European constitution for that, more direct elections, a more independent European Court. The EU as it is today, is too complicated – you have to study it to be able to understand it.”
The students recorded the song last summer and also made a video clip that can be seen on YouTube. “The responses have been more positive than I thought. People are not just entertained, they also appreciate the message,” says Buchholz, who took on the role of lead singer. “Not because I have the best voice, but because I can live with the embarrassment the best,” he laughs. “We decided that not being able to sing beautifully shouldn’t stop us from making this.”