Albanians are only allowed to marry Albanians

Home love in upheaval - "I perceive a standstill here with many Albanians"

You want to be a mouthpiece for everyone who no longer has a voice in the conflict between cultures. How do you show that on stage?

We showed the story of a young Albanian woman who applies for asylum in Switzerland. The application is denied, but the officer falls in love with her. It doesn't matter where the woman comes from or what she does in Switzerland. The only thing that counts is the encounter. It's a nice conflict.

Are there also unsightly conflicts?

I meet them again and again, including myself. Sometimes I don't even know why I am in a conflict again and what I did wrong. Maybe the fact that I have a different temperament alone could be responsible. For me this is an ugly conflict because it is intangible.

I was blown away by the people of Pristina, really. Meanwhile, I perceive a standstill among many Albanians here in Switzerland.
Author: Albana AgajActress

What clichés do you face?

A woman once told me that it was amazing that as an Albanian I only had a child in my early 30s. So there is the cliché that an Albanian woman has children with 20 children. It is true that 15 years ago the topic of marriage was in the foreground among young Albanian women. Visits to Kosovo were primarily important in order to find the Prince Charming. Something like that still happens today, but much less so. In Pristina one is further along.

How do they experience the young people in Pristina?

They are cosmopolitan, they don't hold on, they move. Pristina is a great city with wonderful people, lots of young people. It has self-confident, emancipated women and great theater people who work a lot for little money. They want to advance this city and this country. I was overwhelmed, really. Meanwhile, I perceive a standstill among many Albanians here in Switzerland.

Kosovo has become home again. I really enjoy being there, especially in Pristina. It is love.
Author: Albana AgajActress

Also with the young Albanians in Switzerland?

They are so in between. You have not yet completely freed yourself from the traditions. But they all don't get married at 20 or get their first car from their dad. The boys in Switzerland feel Albanian, but they have a mixed identity. You are looking in a space in between.

What is your relationship with Kosovo today?

The country has become home again. I really enjoy being there, especially in Pristina. It is love.

The interview was conducted by Aleksandra Hiltmann.

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Albana Agaj is from Kosovo and is an actress. She works in the theater group «forever productions». In a co-production with theater people from Kosovo, she staged a play that was shown in both countries.

hilta / galc

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