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:

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Reflections & Responses

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Jo Salas

Salas

Jo Salas under an olive tree before a Freedom Bus performance just outside Al Walajah, a West Bank village soon to be surrounded by the separation wall.


Updates:

In April, Jo Salas spent a week in the Jenin refugee camp in Palestine with the Freedom Theatre, which is developing a Playback Theatre project called the Freedom Bus. The project was initiated by Ben Rivers, who co-wrote a section within Salas’ chapter of the Volume II, Acting Together anthology about working with Sri Lankans in San Francisco. This September, the Freedom Bus will travel throughout the West Bank, stopping in villages to perform Playback shows and inviting people to tell their stories of the occupation. Salas trained the actors and witnessed three performances, and heard unforgettable stories of oppression and resistance. She also visited with Iman Aoun, whose work with Ashtar Theatre is featured in Chapter 4 of Volume I of the Acting Together anthology. 

The No More Bullying project continues in local schools in upstate New York, as well as in other regions where Playback ensembles have been trained. The group is currently seeking funding for this work.

Additionally, in the past year, three members of the AHRDO ensemble in Afghanistan traveled to New York and Washington DC to present a play based on stories told in Playback shows. The members also attended a workshop that Salas taught in New York City, and it was deeply moving for Salas to hear them tell their stories. AHRDO has been using Playback extensively as part of their Legislative Theatre project about Women's Rights. Sadly, Z, the key female member of this team (and one of members who visited the U.S.), was violently attacked a few weeks ago after receiving threats about her work. She is still trying to find safety for herself and her children. In the past year, Hjalmar Joffre Eichhorn, who spearheaded the project in Afghanistan, has led Playback Theatre workshops in Bolivia, the Maldives, Kyrgyzstan, Northern Ireland and East Timor.

Upcoming Events/Workshops:

No More Bullying!: Using improvisational, personal-story-based theatre to empower witnesses, victims, and schools
August 8, 2012
AATE conference, Lexington, Kentucky

Acting Together Case Study:
Read Jo Salas’ original case study for the Acting Together project.



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