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"Trigger" for Change

Not In Our State 2014, Montana State-Wide Summit on Sexual Assault. Presenting "Trigger" for Change: Theatre as a Tool for Social Dialogue
by

Sydoney Blackmore

on 3 April 2015

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Transcript of "Trigger" for Change

Trigger
for Change:
Theatre as a Tool for Social Dialogue

Dialogue
"[There is an] intrinsic need of the human psyche—body, mind, heart, spirit—for dialogue." -Michael Rohd

Soapboxes, the invalidation of emotions, and retreating into privilege
Arms Wide Open
Issue affects everyone, so allow everyone to have a voice, but not spread inaccurate information.
Directing and Design Choices
Multiple actors playing same character-necessity that worked
Costuming
Unrealistic set-very theatrical staging
Original Project Construction
Changes Within Process
Final Event Structure
Posters
Tables
Programs
Multimedia
Staged reading
Tossing Fuzzies
Four-Corners discussion
Interested?
Emotional
Topic prevalent in media
Rarely address emotionality
1). Afraid to trigger survivors
2). Asking attention for depressing topic
Provide emotional connection for those "without" it
Impact of live vs. recorded performance
Personal
Specific person's story which has parallels to others' stories
Every person's perception of art is colored by their human experience
Safe
Theatricality keeps audience aware that it's not real
Reference point outside oneself
Leave the emotions at the theater, but the lessons stick
Network
Pitched idea to DHC Advisor

Faculty mentor for School of T&D

Contacted people on campus working with the issue
Kimberly Brown-Campbell
Elizabeth Hubble
Lucy France
Christine Fiore
Define Structural Elements
Company research

Use
The Trigger
text, most likely some kind of production

Discussion Panel
Keys to Success
Flexibility
Budget
Personnel
Exact event structure
Passion
Ensemble building: Theatre games!
Do what we are asking the audience to do
NO SOAPBOX
Company Members' Involvement
Had members of different committment levels so that we had more people participating in the discussion

Necessary for different perspectives
Multimedia
Addressed need for logical reasoning through statistics

Hooked audience right from the beginning

F#@K YES!
Sex positive consent promotion
Dialogue
Educated, respectful discussion necessary to hear all opinions on issues
Four-Corners Discussion
Organically developed statements
End with hope
Provide opportunities for more info
Requirements for Participation
Educated
Respectful
Understanding
Standing your ground
Advantages
All emotions validated
All perspectives heard
Faulty assumptions stated
Successes
Passionate, responsible, dedicated company
Strong theatrical presence
Positive audience response to event construction
Strong company support network
Strong support from campus faculty
Improvements
Play did not depict most common sexual assault circumstance for our community
Discussion disconnected from staged reading
On survey: How did you find out about this event?
Augusto Boal
Brazil
Theatre of the Oppressed
Legislative Theatre
France
"Cops in the head"
Rainbow of Desire

Rehearsal for Real Life
Theatre in prisons
Stage Play- theatre and autism
Resources
Games for Actors and Non-Actors-
Augusto Boal
Theatre of the Oppressed-
Boal
The Rainbow of Desire-
Boal
Legislative Theatre-
Boal
Theatre for Community, Conflict, and Dialogue-
Michael Rohd
Acting Successful
-Jillian Campana
The Illumination Project: Portland Community College
Words of Caution
Theatre is DIFFICULT
Strong theatrical elements must support work and message
Support system and ensemble NECESSARY
Why Theatre?
Etiquette
Sexual assault is undeniably emotional.
Where did this all begin?
History of Applied Theatre
Using theatre as a tool on your campus
Sydoney Blackmore
sydoney.blackmore@umontana.edu
(218) 390-1190

Marit Olson
marit.olson@umontana.edu
(406) 451-2939
Thank you for your time!
Questions? Comments? Concerns?
Cultural etiquette of respect within audience
Disadvantageous cultural etiquette for online videos
Read script
Research
Desire to bring my new awareness others
Did Louis CK draw you in?
Is this an appropriate hook for a varied audience?
What do you think is the most important tool in stopping rape culture?
Key Turning Points
Nature of victim “blaming”
Understanding legal process
Close to home
Connect to our campus
Regularity of sexual assault - here and now
Not the stranger - acquaintance - everything right and still victimized
Uneducated public - esp. young women
Structures keep people down
Universal problem - affects everyone
TIME
923.5
recorded
hours
Audience Survey Results
I am more informed about MT laws and University policies
I better understand how sexual assault affects the survivor
I felt safe to discuss my opinions in the discussion portion
I feel the discussion helped me understand issues and concepts surrounding sexual assault
I feel the theatrical performance enhanced my understanding of the issue of sexual assault
This event has affected my perspective on the issue of sexual assault
~13% strongly agreed
75% agreed
~12% disagreed
~53% strongly agreed
~43% agreed
~3% disagreed
75% strongly agreed
25% agreed
~55% strongly agreed
~42% agreed
~3% disagreed
~55% strongly agreed
~39% agreed
~6% disagreed
~33% strongly agreed
50% agreed
~17% disagreed
Full transcript