The Center for Applied Theatre rocks. Seriously. I’ve known Mark and Jenny for a number of years now and am always inspired and activated by their work. They make people excited to take on the tough topics, and they give us the tools to do it. My name is S. Leigh Thompson and I am the Co-founder and Executive Director of The Forum Project, an organization using creative tools for creative change in New York City. Over the years I have come across many other organizations using applied theatre, but few are as expert, skilled and effective as the Center for Applied Theatre in Milwaukee. The Center for Applied Theatre’s approaches are innovative and inspired. They think beyond traditional applied theatre and look to new, exciting ways that will encourage exploration and discussion about important issues. Their work is dialogic, participatory and so much fun! And CAT’s work with young people is exciting and yields tremendous results. programs develop confidence and critical thinking and helps to build community among youth. Mark and Jenny are experts in using creative and engaging tools to address difficult social issues. Through activities that employ movement and the voice, they challenge and support participants to explore complex topics and examine themselves and their worldviews, all by using theatrical techniques. They are truly thoughtful and passionate facilitators of the work. It’s almost impossible not to learn something new when playing along. This is why The Forum Project is excited and proud to continue to learn from and grow with the Center for Applied Theatre, and we can’t wait for what they come up with next!
S. Leigh Thompson
Executive Director, The Forum Project
Mark and Jenny are creative, compassionate, flexible, insightful guides and jokers. I have taken several workshops in Theatre of the Oppressed with them, and will continue to do so every chance I get. Their co-jokering is always compassionate, very very fun, and challenging. I always learn from them!
Theatre of the Oppressed joker, past president of Pedagogy and Theatre of the Oppressed, and Associate Professor at Wheelock College, Boston
The Center for Applied Theatre brings to any work site an unusual breadth of experience, including much one-on-one work with Augusto Boal himself. They also bring a deep understanding of social and economic justice infused with genuine compassion for all those on the margins of power. Their adaptating of techniques to specific circumstances is very impressive. Few community-based theatre artists bring the range of experience and skill as do Jenny Wanasek and Mark Weinberg. I always recommend them, and I do so with confidence and without reservation.
Doug Paterson, PhD.
University of Nebraska-Omaha, Founder of Pedagogy and Theatre of the Oppressed
Center for Applied Theatre is organization that epitomizes the vision of Arts @ Large. They work with school communities to unearth the profound narratives and knowledge that young people inherently hold but may be resistant to unveil. Mark and Jenny have the ability to meet both young people and adults where they are and work as partners to transform the way we see ourselves and our community.
Program Manager, Arts @ Large
I want to thank you both for your invaluable contribution to HIRE Center’s organizational growth. You were both outstanding. The workshops were definitely thought provoking and had a profound impact on all of those who attended. Without a doubt, staff seems to be more welcoming and accepting of their coworkers point of view, ideas, and perspectives. The exercises and the forum theatre were just phenomenal – they stirred much participation and brought to light many of the challenges that were preventing Hire staff from building a cohesive organizational mission. You helped us resolve a chronic organizational crisis in that we are now capable of reexamining our assumptions with a different set of filters. Your work without a doubt has helped us understand the importance of building a supportive work environment. Your work has inspired us in trying our best, and in continuing making a difference in people’s lives by strengthening what we already have: a talented, committed, and dedicated staff.
Hire Center Manager