Tapestry Playback Theatre produces communitry performances using the playback theatre format, conducts workshops on personal development, and develops community projects using playback theatre.
What is Playback Theatre?
Playback Theatre is created through a unique collaboration between performers and audience. Someone tells a story or moment from their life, chooses actors to play the different roles, then watches as their story is immediately recreated and given artistic shape and coherence, through elements of movement, cloth, music and the spoken word.
Building community through personal stories
Playback Theatre creates a ritual space where any story - however ordinary, extraordinary, hidden or difficult - might be told, and immediately made into theatre. And where each person's uniqueness is honoured and affirmed while at the same time building and strengthening our connections to each other as a community of people.
The original Playback Theatre Company came together in 1975, with Jonathan Fox as its director. This was in the mid-Hudson valley of upstate New York and part of the experimental theatre explorations of the 1970s - looking for ways of reaching out to its audience, bringing theatre closer to everyday reality, and breaking away from the tradition of scripted theatre. Since then, Playback Theatre has spread across the world with companies and practitioners in over 30 countries. It thrives in a variety of settings, existing as community theatre gatherings as well as a professional service to both the business and social sector.
· Community ritual & theatre: Jonathan Fox had lived in Nepal and experienced these deeply embedded into the rhythms of everyday life.
· Oral tradition of storytelling: where people gather together to hear and share the old stories - the world of myths and legends and folktales.
· Psychodrama: while there are differences in form and practice, there are many shared values in Playback Theatre and psychodrama. For example,
o spontaneity and the release of creative energy
o inclusiveness – every individual has a place in the collective.