Updates

The original contributors and curators for the documentary and anthology continue to innovate and transform the field of peacebuilding and the arts. Read about their recent activities, upcoming events, and other updates.

  • Daniel Banks
  • Catherine Filloux
  • Kate Gardner
  • Roberto Gutiérrez Varea
  • Mary Ann Hunter
  • Roberta Levitow
  • Allison Lund
  • Ruth Margraff
  • Dijana Milošević
  • Aida Nasrallah
  • John O'Neal
  • Madhawa Palihapitiya
  • Lee Perlman
  • Jo Salas
  • Polly Walker

panel

Reflections & Responses

Read our viewers' stories.

One-Year Anniversary


banner

This July, we celebrate our one-year anniversary of the release of the feature documentary "Acting Together on the World Stage" as well as the publication of Volume I of the Acting Together anthology.
vol1

It’s been an exciting year for the Acting Together project, starting with the global launch in the fall of 2011. In the fall and winter, the documentary was screened by our partners around the world, in Peru, Argentina, Canada, Switzerland, the Netherlands, South Africa, Kenya, Pakistan, Kashmir, Cambodia, Korea, China, and in over ten cities and college campuses in the United States. 

There is no doubt that the Acting Together resources are doing their work in the world, stimulating conversations in communities and classrooms. In October 2011, for instance, Dijana Milošević and Cindy Cohen led a master class for artists and community workers in Northern Ireland, and the film was screened in both Derry and Belfast. In April 2012, fifty theatre artists in Bogota, Colombia explored the conception of reconciliation illustrated in the film; they are eager for the anthologies to be translated into Spanish. First Nations students of the Justice Institute in Vancouver considered which approaches to painful legacies keep communities trapped in victim status and conflict dynamics, and which engender healing and the letting go of grudges. Theatre artists in Sri Lanka are chomping at the bit for Tamil and Sinhalese versions of the film. 

AT-dccumentaryIn June, filmmakers Cynthia Cohen and Allison Lund were named winners of the 33rd Annual Telly Awards for educational documentaries, a tremendous honor for the whole production team, which includes Theatre Without Borders and Brandeis University’s Peacebuilding and the Arts program. Allison Lund said, “As an individual, I often feel powerless, a single flame. But in producing this film, in bearing witness to both horrendous crime and stunning ingenuity, I become part of the 'powerful fire' that Polly Walker evokes at the film's conclusion. Instead of casting my eye in resignation at the greed and rampant inequalities of my world, my gaze has been uplifted by the vitality that can craft responses to these problems, by the imagination that can inform justice seeking.” (Read her insightful reflections.) We have also received thoughtful and appreciative responses from members of communities who watch the film. Read our viewers’ stories.

panel

Cindy Cohen and Allison Lund
at the post-screening discussion.
Brandeis University. 2011.

In December 2011, on the occasion of the release of the second volume of the Acting Together anthology, Brandeis hosted a symposium, “Just Performance: Enacting Justice in the Wake of Violence.” The event explored the justice-seeking possibilities of four types of performance: trials, truth commissions, theatrical works and public rituals, focusing on Acting Together case studies from Peru, Cambodia and the United States. Panelists presented varied approaches to seeking justice in the aftermath of violence, with the hope that professionals working in these very different modalities might coordinate to better serve communities recovering from gross violations of human rights.

All in all, we are thrilled with the widespread use of the Acting Together materials in both peacebuilding and educational settings. At Georgetown University, the anthology 
CEC
has become the basis for a new program in peacebuilding and performance, attracting students from the school of foreign service and from performance studies. The anthology is also being used in the drama therapy program at Lesley University in Cambridge, and at the law school at the University of British Columbia. 

Anthology co-editors Roberto Gutiérrez Varea and Polly Walker have incorporated the books into their courses at the University of San Francisco and Juniata College, respectively. Other contributors to the documentary and anthology continue to do innovative and transformative work the field of peacebuilding and the arts. 

Looking to the future, we hope for another fruitful year in which the Acting Together project will continue building a strong community of peacebuilders and artists working in zones of violent conflict. Read about our contributors’ recent activities and upcoming events.