In the previous blog post, we looked at facilitation styles and different ways of talking about human rights. But how can we use these skills and knowledge on stage? How can we involve performative arts in human rights and non-formal education?
This was the guiding question for the participants of Civil Stage, a multi-phase Erasmus+ training for trainers. The second part of their programme in Tbilisi concerned improv – on stage improvisation and forum theatre, a form of immersive theatre first developed in Brazil. It was largely inspired by the work of Paulo Freire and the thesis put down in his book, “Pedagogy of the Oppressed”.
Forum theatre explores the relationship between the “oppressor” and the “oppressed”, while giving the audience an opportunity to intervene and relate to the situation that is being played in front of them.
On 1 November, the participants of Civil Stage acted out three separate stories in front of a local audience in the Children and Youth National Center's theatre in Tbilisi. In their performance, the participants sought to contextualise human rights in a familiar setting (for example school, home or work).
The final performance was a chance to put their ideas into practice. The following day was largely devoted to evaluation, and what comes next. Over the next few months, participants will go back to their communities and apply forum theatre or improv in their work. In April, some of them will be invited to present results and share their experience in Utrecht, the Netherlands.
The project is supported by Erasmus+, and includes partner organisations from Armenia (Voluntary Service of Armenia), Belgium (DROA), Belarus (Developing Center for Efficient Communication, “Human Library”), Finland (MIILZA), Georgia (Youth Association DRONI), the Netherlands (Stichting Internationale Werkkampen), Russian Federation (Youth Assembly of Nations Living in Tatarstan), Spain (Ecocompartimos), Ukraine (Non-Formal Education for Youth) and the United Kingdom (Creative Communities CIC).
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