Public Exploration Of Issues of Concern
Forum Theatre performances present short plays which show an oppressive situation that needs to be changed. Audience members are invited to replace actors on stage and try to change the situation. Other actors respond in character, trying to maintain their oppressive or exploitative power. Each new attempt reveals important information about the nature of that particular oppression and its systemic context. Forum Theatre provides a means for defining core issues, revealing their relationship to systemic oppressions, raising questions and promoting discussion, and even testing solutions in action.
Center for Applied Theatre jokers/facilitators have developed a process that uses image games and exercises from Theatre of the Oppressed, virtues exploration, and interactive story-boarding activities to guide groups in the creation and performance of their own Forum Theatre pieces. [With youth or student groups for whom online or live performance is not feasible, we adapt Forum Theatre to the creation of graphic story books and videos.]
CAT also offers workshops to share our development process with community-based theatre companies and NGO/service/activist groups interested in the development and performance of Forum Theatre as a tool in their social justice work.