Christians are by definition people who engage: with Christ, with other people, with the church, and with the world in which they live. Theatre is a powerful force for engagement when people share the same space and time together. Jesus said the ones who will be blessed by the Father and inherit the kingdom are the ones who feed the hungry, clothe the naked, visit prisoners and the sick and welcome strangers – and those people aren’t necessarily (or often) in our churches. “And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’” (Matthew 25:40) How can theatre be a force for social justice, personal transformation and community engagement? In this experiential Happening we will explore how to explode our preconceived ideas of theatre in Christian ministry and turn our eyes toward the “least of these” among us.
In addition to intensive training at Warehouse 242 the participants in the workshop will venture out into the community to engage with people who are being helped by social service agencies. In these community settings, the workshop participants will experience how theory is turned into praxis. Groups being considered for this experiential component include people in homeless shelters, at-risk youth in an after school program, adults with disabilities and other groups. The goal is to take the participants out to two different community settings to see how applied theatre ministers to people who are “the least of these.”
Dr. Dale Savidge
Dale Savidge is the Executive Director of CITA, an organization he helped found 30 years ago. He earned two Masters degrees in theatre and a PhD in English and Theatre (from the University of South Carolina). In 1996 Dale launched Associates and Savidge, an arts management organization for professional actors. He is the founder and Executive Director of the Applied Theater Center where he practices as a drama therapist and creates programming for people with disabilities, in detention centers, in drug rehab centers, and with foster children. He is the coauthor of Performing the Sacred: Theology and Theatre in Dialogue.