Community created the ‘remote control’ technique, this

Community Theatre

Community
Theatre is part of a community, most community theatre groups are non-profit
businesses with large casts, but most have two professional staff members.
Community theatre raises awareness to the public and is educational.

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There are
many different themes in community theatre, for example, rape; bullying; murder
and teen pregnancy. These themes are situations that happen in everyday life,
these are performed to spread awareness at schools, community clubs, youth
clubs, local theatres and many more.

Community
Theatre has many different clients such as young children, teens, and people
who want to learn about the situations that are performed. However when
performing these types of performances you have to be aware of what people might
have been through or experienced in the past and think about how they would
feel, also consider ages and make the performance appropriate.

This type of
theatre has been around for quite some time, a person who led a community
theatre group in the 1900s was a woman called Joan Littlewood, but Littlewood
took serious situations and made a mockery out of them, an example of this
would be ‘oh what a lovely war’ Joan turned it into humour (Dark humour).

Another
technique that Littlewood used was the ‘living newspaper’ technique, this is
where she took a newspaper headline and would evolve a piece of theatre from it
and then perform it to the public. Joan also created the ‘remote control’
technique, this was where either the person performing or the audience would
say the controls of a remote control such as play, pause, rewind and stop.
Littlewood did this to get the audience involved and to understand clearer on
the situation.

Another
theatre director was Augusto Boal, he was a Brazilian theatre director and practitioner
who was known for theatre of the oppressed, and this is a theatrical form that
is used for educational movements. The theatre of the oppressed was created in
the 1970s, Boal used theatre techniques to promote social and political change,
and the audience becomes active/involved, for example, ‘spect actors’ to change
a situation within the performance.

Local community theatre performances

The Red room (27/10/17) – This performance will be situated at
the Pomegranate Theatre, it’s a spine chilling new play based on a ghost story
by HG Wells, about a room that is apparently haunted, the characters are very
curious about the room and so decide to venture the so called ‘haunted room’,
the outcome of this is unexpected and terrifying.

This
performance’s target audience is age twelve and above, the focus of this
performance is to build tension and to get the audience involved, this is
similar to both Joan Littlewood and Augusto Boal as they both got the audience
involved but in their own different ways. The purpose of this performance is to
promote cultural diversity, this is because this performance may expose new
tastes and experiences for the audience on life after death or spirits, which
is the moral message of this performance. I hope this performance will
entertain the audience and make them become tense during this performance and
get people to explore new experiences about life after death.

Nicholas Nickleby the Musical
(22/11/17)  Presented by Chesterfield
Operatics Society– This
performance is also situated at the Pomegranate Theatre, it is a musical
theatre show that is based on the novel by Charles Dickens, and this
performance is about the death of Nicholas’s financially replete father, to
which Nicholas and his family travel to London to receive assistance from his
Fathers older brother Ralph and the journey to employment, investments, human
nature and business begin for Nicholas.

The target
audience for this any age but I think this performance would be more
appropriate and enjoyable for adults and OAPs. The purpose of this performance
is to promote social diversity on businesses and family, this is similar to
Joan Littlewood as she used social diversity whilst acting. I hope this
performance will interest the audience and make them about life during business
and employment.

Talk: Derbyshire in the civil war
(18/10/17) presented by Brian Stone – This performance is situated at the Winding Wheel, it is a
performance/talk about the English Civil War of 1642-1651, which is known as
one of the most important period in English History, Derbyshire’s economic and
political importance. The talks purpose is to educate the audience about the
roots of conflict have affected our country and the progress it has led to.
This performance promotes social diversity of England’s history. I think the
target audience for this performance is juniors and above as this talk will be
very educational and would be extremely appropriate for schools, if they are
studying that subject in history classes. The moral message from this
performance would be to think about how England has changed and what was done
for these changes to happen. This type of performance is similar to Joan
Littlewood as she used war in her performances and wanted her performances to
be educational and this performance I also similar to Augusto Boal as he used
techniques to express social and political change. I hope this performance will
be educational for the audience and will get people to think differently about
English history.

Even though
these performances are all community based there are some differences, such as
different narratives, for example, the civil war performance is more
educational whereas the other two performances are more for entertainment
purposes. There are many types of community theatre but overall community
theatre is to raise awareness for educational purposes to keep people safe and
aware during everyday life, and also to help people understand what they could
do if they were in a certain situation or how to avoid it and how to deal with
the after affects which communicates important life lessons to the public, at
its best community theatre delivers important messages to every social demographic
part in the community that they serve. This type of theatre makes it accessible
to the hard to reach groups who wouldn’t necessarily have access to theatre of
any sort, for example, theatre is taken to them.

 

By Natasha
Comins

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