Getting Ready for the School Tour

Today is the day!

What day? Well, you’ll just have to keep reading.

Today is the day our Seven Visions school tour gets documented, in perpetuity (that’s a word that lawyers use, I learned it from Legally Blonde), for the viewing pleasure of students far and wide.

Since we can’t take our tour into schools like we usually do, we’re filming it and bringing it students and schools via streaming. With a mixture of pre-recorded and live footage hosted by actor, facilitator and all-around awesome person Josh Ranville, junior high and high school students from across Manitoba – and maybe even further – will still have the opportunity to experience this powerful story about what reconciliation means to today’s youth in the style of forum theatre that Sarasvàti is known for presenting.

Forum Theatre is a type of theatre created by the innovative practitioner Augusto Boal as part of what he calls “Theatre of the Oppressed”. While practicing earlier in his career, Boal would apply ‘simultaneous dramaturgy.’ In this process the actors or audience members could stop a performance and attempt to change the outcome of what they were seeing.

This was an attempt to bring audience members into the performance and give them input into the dramatic action they were watching. Students experience and develop a deeper sense of awareness when given the opportunity to contribute and reflect, which is a necessary and an important aspect of the drama curriculum. With Forum Theatre, students are encouraged to step outside themselves and to explore different ways of thinking and being.

In our adapted tour presentation, Josh will be streaming live from our new office space, chatting with youth across the province about the play and hosting conversations about how situations within the play could be navigated differently.

And even though the actors can’t be there live to improvise these new scenarios as suggested by the students, there will be plenty of extra scenarios to explore in a choose-your-own-adventure style that stays true to the idea of forum theatre.

(If you’ve ever seen the movie Clue, with its multiple endings, it’s kind of like that!)

Prepping to film a theatre production and figuring out how to deliver it to schools and students in a meaningful, interesting way has been a lot of hard work, but in a few days that hard work will be ready to share with schools, with Josh ready to give teachers a much-needed break from virtual teaching and give students an experience with theatre unlike any that have had before.

You can stay up to date with Sarasvàti as it explores the landscape of digital theatre more via our social media platforms. Upcoming not-to-miss posts will very likely include any or all of the following:

  • An actor getting drenched in ice coffee repeatedly in order to get the perfect shot
  • Many outtakes of failed improvised scenarios
  • Copious amounts of hand-sanitizer, face masks and face shields
  • And so much more!

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