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PTPI’s 2014 European Forum / Theater Training Course: Day 5

August 25th, 2014

Leaders from Bulgaria, Croatia, Germany, Israel, Kosovo, Macedonia, Morocco, Romania, Serbia, and Spain were selected for the 2014 program in Berlin, Germany. Participants will share their experiences throughout the course of the program:

Theater Training Course participants take part in an exercise using Merlin's cards

Theater Training Course participants take part in an exercise using Merlin’s cards

Theater Production Day - Today was the 5th day in our quest to learn about how to use theater to combat marginalization and poverty. Our great team is feeling tired and yet excited to go deeper and deeper into secrets of theater productions.  With all the impressions we gathered yesterday at KREATIVHAUS and being silent most of the time in the afternoon whilst practicing non-verbal theater methods, I felt like each of us had a lot to say today.

We were very fortunate to start the day with Merlin’s cards – an exercise led by our fellow colleague Judith – the drama therapist from Irael. It was not surprising for me to receive the card indicating giving knowledge to others and as the wheel turns, I am the one sharing my thoughts on today’s activities with you.

The theater production workshop was opened by the theater expert Martina Brückner (accompanied by her lovely dog), who made us think about all the things that could go wrong with theater production. In small groups we explored some of the most common practical and psychological problems, which may occur before, during and after. All the issues were explored further and the experts proposed some solutions. Our great trainers Zoran and Martina outlined The Golden Rules for Theater Productions. To me it was very useful to see that they were very similar to the means used to overcome obstacles in pretty much every other project we take on. One of the rules that stand out was: Expect the unexpected, as it will definitely happen. Martina, Zoran, and Verena elaborated further on some basics about writing your own theater play.

After lunch we continued with an energizer conducted by me, which made people laugh and got them all tuned up for work. The most meaningful moment for me was the moment we began working on the task to create our own Concepts for Theater Production.  After overcoming the anxiety caused by the lack of experience and the confusion in our national team of such an unusual work for us, the ideas just start flooding the blank papers and soon we had four original concepts of theater productions aiming at different target groups we work with and exploring important issues they face on a daily basis. During the debriefing of the group work, I was mesmerized in the open space of sharing and mutual support that was established. I can not find words to express all the emotions going through my head during this afternoon and all the inspiration I got whilst listening to the other national teams who had also created amazing concepts for Theater Productions.

Revealing the know how of Theater production and looking behind the curtains of  art-making made me feel privileged and rich and I will gladly share my treasure of newly gained skills and knowledge back home. I can’t wait to start working on the implementation of our ideas and see the results of the other participants too.

- Emilia Crushcov, PTPI’s Plovdiv, Bulgaria Chapter

The 2014 PTPI Theater Training was funded with support from the European Commission

Program objectives include:

  • Increase participants knowledge and appreciation of other cultures
  • Learn how to best raise awareness of culturally-related stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination
  • Exchange ideas and experiences related to humanitarian service projects
  • Practice techniques useful for working with young people and marginalized groups
  • Develop skills that will enable participants to combat marginalization and poverty via theater productions by and for young people
  • Empower and motivate participants to use these skills in their own communities

Learn more about People to People International at www.ptpi.org or on the PTPI Facebook Page

 

 


PTPI’s 2014 European Forum / Theater Training Course: Day 4

August 22nd, 2014

Leaders from Bulgaria, Croatia, Germany, Israel, Kosovo, Macedonia, Morocco, Romania, Serbia, and Spain were selected for the 2014 program in Berlin, Germany. Participants will share their experiences throughout the course of the program:

Film-Training-Course-Kreativehaus

Performers at Kreativehaus in Berlin, where Theater Training Course participants learned techniques they will be able to use in their own communities

Today, we visited KREATIVHAUS in Berlin Mitte, which is an institution that offers diverse social, cultural, and educational programs to people from the neighborhood and beyond. We had the chance to get to know and observe their summer holiday program for children, ages 5-10. Together with the children, we watched an introductory theater play that took us to a zoo in Australia from which a wombat managed to escape. In search for the little animal, we and the children went on an imaginary journey through Australia, learning from an actor expert about animals in Australia, jumping and collecting food together with kangaroos, singing, listening to stories, and doing handicrafts with aborigines. The journey was concluded with a final theater scene in which the fugitive wombat decided to go to the outback instead of returning to the zoo.

Participants describe the experience in this way:

I have always believed in the proverb: ‘We are creative only if we are given an opportunity.’ This is  what I have experienced today at the creative house in Berlin. Children have shown a great part of their creativity during the three stages.” – Rachid El Machehouri (Morroco)

“This was an extraordinary experience for me. All those children having fun and learning things about Australia and the animals living there points to the importance of child development from an early age. KREATIVHAUS, keep up the good work!” – Jana Stanoeska (Macedonia)

“It was a wonderful experience. I enjoyed the creativity of all three stages. This gave me inspiration for making something like this in our center. Thanks a lot for this opportunity.” – Florin-Cristian Predescu (Romania)

“As a teacher being the first time in Berlin, this was an amazing experience as I learned new methods how to devise roles for children.” – Soha Msallha (Israel)

“It was a very relaxing experience, overcoming the borders between childhood and adulthood, entering the world of fairy tales. For me, personally, it was more an animation than a theater performance and I enjoyed interacting and playing with the children and becoming a child once again. It was also kind of sad to realize how much we become stuck in our adult world. Thank you for letting me play.” – Emilia Crushcov (Bulgaria)

“This was a wonderful journey into children’s world” – Raluca Ioana Vasile (Romania)

“We saw a play that dealt with the topic of wild animals being held in captivity. This is an important topic, which I discussed before with friends and colleagues. I appreciated that this complex issue was being put on stage. Although I didn’t always agree with the answers that were given, I enjoyed the play.” – Utz Ebertz (Germany)

“I was very happy to visit Kreativhaus today. I liked the experience, the children, the play, and the movement from one stage to another.” – Nikoleta Yaneva (Bulgaria)

After our excursion, we returned to our training venue in Berlin Spandau and engaged in a variety of non verbal theater methods and pantomime. During our intercultural party, we learned dances from Macedonia and Kosovo, discovered Serbian and Bulgarian history and arts, got to know different aspects of Morrocon lifestyle and culture, tasted our diverse food and drinks and celebrated.

- Verena Denk, Director, European Programs and Outreach, PTPI

The 2014 PTPI Theater Training was funded with support from the European Commission

Program objectives include:

  • Increase participants knowledge and appreciation of other cultures
  • Learn how to best raise awareness of culturally-related stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination
  • Exchange ideas and experiences related to humanitarian service projects
  • Practice techniques useful for working with young people and marginalized groups
  • Develop skills that will enable participants to combat marginalization and poverty via theater productions by and for young people
  • Empower and motivate participants to use these skills in their own communities

Learn more about People to People International at www.ptpi.org or on the PTPI Facebook Page

 

 


PTPI’s 2014 European Forum / Theater Training Course: Day 3

August 22nd, 2014

Leaders from Bulgaria, Croatia, Germany, Israel, Kosovo, Macedonia, Morocco, Romania, Serbia, and Spain were selected for the 2014 program in Berlin, Germany. Participants will share their experiences throughout the course of the program:

Film Training Course participants break down cultural barriers and get to know one another

Film Training Course participants break down cultural barriers and get to know one another

Combat Marginalization Day - Thirty participants, three coaches, people from all over Europe, the Middle East, and Northern Africa working together on one larger topic: “Our Margin for Theater.”

In the last three days we got to know each other more and more, as we worked together very intensively, laughed, shared experiences from our home countries and worked in very diverse constellations. Looking back it’s really amazing how the team spirit increased with every day. I mean it’s not self-evident in such a big group that you get along with everybody. I have the feeling that all of the participants are really trying to understand each other and see things from different perspectives. This is what multicultural learning is all about, right?

The days are passing by really quickly, as always when you´re doing something that you like or that is very intense. You don´t really feel like working, but in the end of the day you notice how much new stuff you’ve been talking about and that your head is actually kinda dizzy. Well, but it’s not that uncomfortable dizziness, but sort of a: “Wow, it has been a long day and I´m really tired, but it was also really good stuff that I learned dizziness.” The last days I could have gone to bed really early, because there are so many things I wanted to think deeply about and also find some rest, but at the same time the people are really enjoyable, so we spent half the night talking in the lobby.

Today was the first day that we’ve been working on the actual topic of the workshop. After the presentation of our recent projects and lunch, we had our first theater classes. We started with some warm-ups that might have looked a bit silly for an outsider, but helped us to emerge into the topic and feel free to start acting. The end and highlight of the day was a play that we performed in groups of five people and for which we had 10 minutes of preparation. All in all it was another very nice day that we spent in Johannesstift, Spandau-Berlin, working on “Our margin for theatre” and learning how to make a difference with the power of expression.

- Korede Amojo, Berlin, Germany

The 2014 PTPI Theater Training was funded with support from the European Commission

Program objectives include:

  • Increase participants knowledge and appreciation of other cultures
  • Learn how to best raise awareness of culturally-related stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination
  • Exchange ideas and experiences related to humanitarian service projects
  • Practice techniques useful for working with young people and marginalized groups
  • Develop skills that will enable participants to combat marginalization and poverty via theater productions by and for young people
  • Empower and motivate participants to use these skills in their own communities

Learn more about People to People International at www.ptpi.org or on the PTPI Facebook Page