Liberating Spirits in India, Across the Internet, in Prison

Feature in Issue 7-2 | Summer 1995

It is in the nature of being human to want the freedom and opportunity to control one's own destiny. But, as is well known, on a global and national scale these basic rights are often denied – whether through oppressive regimes, lack of education, social circumstances, or the need for those in power to maintain the status quo. Many working in the ‘total theatre’ world apply its techniques in settings other than traditional ‘theatre’ and use the principles to develop confidence and self worth in others, giving people the opportunity to rise above their surroundings.

In this feature Ris Widdicombe interviews Purna Chandra Rao on his work in India where he has used techniques developed from the teachings of Augusto Boal and Eugenio Barba to empower the poor. Sue Mitchell, explains how inmates at Peterhead prison have become more aware of the responsibilities they have to themselves and to each other through involvement in the prison's Education Unit Drama Group. Faye Chang reports on her attendance at two recent events at the ICA in London addressing contemporary Black culture and looks at how the Internet is becoming a political and cultural vehicle for challenging repression. And finally John Keates of Fecund Theatre talks to Mark Cunnington about a recent youth project, using the life of Jim Morrison, which placed the importance of integrity of process and performance high on its agenda.

This article in the magazine

Issue 7-2
p. 14 - 15