The Performing Arts for Social Change


Today, theatre is increasingly defined as a commercial enterprise. This course will examine the use of theatre for social impact, examining its practice, theory, role, and production. Discussions will include how theatre is used for creating personal and social change and the key elements of successful projects. Classes will look at the full scope of a social change initiative—from process to performance to organization to impact. Interactive class sessions will include participation in a creative process involving community building, team building, conflict resolution, social-issue analysis, and scene creation. Each student will be expected to develop a coherent theory of change and to construct a viable performing arts-based project “blueprint.” Students will also visit a rehearsal of The Possibility Project, a nonprofit organization in Manhattan, uses the performing arts to empower teenagers to transform their lives and communities. Paul Griffin is founder and president of The Possibility Project. This class meets once a week.