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Unrehearsed Futures – Conversations in Theatre Pedagogy

Key Objectives:

  • Initiate a global conversation on drama practice and pedagogy
  • Enable and nurture meaningful exchange between drama practitioners, teachers and students from various drama schools across various countries
  • Create a unified dialogue about global best practices and emerging trends in drama pedagogy and theatre training and practices. 
  • Explore the idea and examples of the ‘future’ of theatre, its purpose, its manifestations, its role in individual life, and society.
  • Give traditional perspectives a global platform and promote cross-cultural syncretism 
  • Document divergent and convergent thought and present them in an accessible format for wider use through an online journal and other forms of downloadable content
  • Build a connected community across the planet who will be a part of the ongoing conversation. 
  • Be a space for new collaborations and initiatives to emerge.

The first series was initiated and moderated by the Drama School Mumbai, and set the stage for questions faced by drama schools and the teachers and students of theatre.

In October 2020, the Drama School Mumbai collaborated with Embodied Poetics, for a second series titled: Response-ability: Theatre Pedagogy in Changing Times.

Curated and moderated by Amy Russell, Founder & Director at Embodied Poetics, the conversations hoped to deepen the dialogue on themes and trends that have emerged in the past few months, with keynote speakers bringing in their diverse approaches to working in theatre and performance during the pandemic.

For the second series, taking off in April 2021, Embodied Poetics and the Drama School Mumbai are pleased to be joined by the University of Cape Town’s Centre for Theatre, Dance & Performance Studies.

Curators Mbongeni N Mtshali and Mwenya Kabwe will work with Amy Russell and Jehan Manekshaw, to bring other exciting contributors onboard to explore our ‘unrehearsed futures’.

In December 2022, Ben Samuels, an award-winning producer and writer, and artistic director of Limbik came on board as a curator for Unrehearsed Futures. We are pleased to share that he will continue curating for the fourth series as well, bringing on exciting and intuitive guests to explore the many possible futures.

The conversations with participants from across the globe, will continue to look at questions of performance, pedagogy, practice, critique, and investigate themes of intersectionality, hybridity, advocacy, and through those, find the opportunities that lie ahead for theatre’s transcendence to a new resilience and relevance.

SEASON 4 – There Will Be A Time…

“I’ve said it before—in contrast to those traditional stories that begin with ‘Once upon a time…’ Zapatista stories begin with ‘There will be a time…” – Subcomandante Galeano (formerly Marcos).

This season of Unrehearsed Futures is inspired by Galeano’s call to see the future as a vital space of action, in which the power to shape the present and thus create the future no longer remains concentrated in the hands of elites. As Galeano’s aphorism suggests, beginning the stories we tell about our lives, our ambitions and the world we want to be part of with “There will be a time…” calls on us to move away from our reflexive preoccupation with a past that remains unchanging and unchangeable, to insisting on a future that not only can but will be, in spite of that past. To begin a story with “There will be a time…” points us towards what late capitalist modernity and its systems of power would have remain unthinkable: that we have the capacity to determine and insist upon a different collective pathway for humanity and our planet.

This season, Unrehearsed Futures takes up this call to engage the future as an imaginative space of radical potential, where we not only name and negotiate the kinds of collective futures we desire based on our collective experience — what could be — to insisting on what will and must be as our point of departure, and from there, devising concrete strategies to manifest that future.

Curators: Season 4

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Season 4

Reportage: Season 3

Reportage: Season 2

Reportage: Season 1

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