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Climate Emergency

Climate change poses an existential threat to humanity and theatremakers need to be part of addressing it. Here, you’ll find content about artistic work that engages with the climate crisis, as well as learnings about how to make theatre practices more eco-friendly. Chantal Bilodeau’s long-running Theatre in the Age of Climate Change series is a must-read, and don’t miss Groundwater Arts’s video series on the Green New Theater.

The Latest

It's Not Easy Being Green
Essay
It's Not Easy Being Green
by John J King
14 September 2021
Performance and Environmental Justice
Video
Performance and Environmental Justice
Part of Ecoperformance Week at The Ringling
Wednesday 8 September 2021
Sarasota, Florida, United States
Artists/Ideas/Now—Imagine Democracy
Video
Artists/Ideas/Now—Imagine Democracy
A Conversation About the Climate Crisis and its Impact in the Middle East and North Africa
Wednesday 15 September 2021
Liverpool, United Kingdom
The Sustainable Theatre Practice Treaty
Essay

The Sustainable Theatre Practice Treaty

24 September 2015

Ian Garrett, Director of the Center for Sustainable Practice in the Arts, asks will we be party to the Sustainable Theatre Practice Treaty?

Archipelagos, Fragile Shores, and Orphan Seas
Essay

Archipelagos, Fragile Shores, and Orphan Seas

A reflection on climate change and performance

23 September 2015

Caridad Svich on writing about the inescapable reality of climate change.

Mourning Becomes Arctic Requiem
Essay

Mourning Becomes Arctic Requiem

The Story of Luke Cole and Kivalina

22 September 2015

Playwright Sharmon Hilfinger discusses how she developed Artic Requiem: The Story of Kivalina with composer Joan McMillen.

A Courtship with Impermanence
Essay

A Courtship with Impermanence

21 September 2015

New Orleans-based artist Nick Slie writes about creating Cry You One, an interdisciplinary, site-responsive project addressing the ongoing effects of climate change on the Gulf Coast.

Nurturing Local Seeds Into Global Vibrancy
Essay

Nurturing Local Seeds Into Global Vibrancy

Climate Change Theatre Action

20 September 2015

Chantal Bilodeau kicks off our second Theatre in the Age of Climate Change series by writing about her work on the international Climate Change Theatre Action initiative.

Latinos and the Rebirth of Post-Katrina New Orleans
Essay

Latinos and the Rebirth of Post-Katrina New Orleans

29 August 2015

José Torres-Tama writes about his experience in New Orleans during and after Hurricane Katrina, ten years ago.

Sarah Cameron Sunde's 36.5 / a durational performance with the sea
Video

Sarah Cameron Sunde's 36.5 / a durational performance with the sea

Monday 10 August 2015
The Netherlands

36.5 / a durational performance with the sea was livestreamed on HowlRound TV on Monday 10 August from 1:45 a.m.-2:45 p.m. EDT (New York) / 12:45 a.m.-1:45 p.m. CDT (Chicago) / 11:45 p.m. (8/9)-12:45 p.m. MDT (Denver) / 10:45 p.m. (8/9)-11:45 a.m. PDT (Los Angeles). For rain date and more info, please visit 365waterproject.org.

Music and Movements
Essay

Music and Movements

Cry You One at the International Festival of Arts & Ideas

2 July 2015

David Bruin on Mondo Bizarro and ArtSpot Productions’ Cry You One at the Arts & Ideas Festival in New Haven, Connecticut.

This Changes Everything 2015 Dialogue Series on Climate Change
Video

This Changes Everything 2015 Dialogue Series on Climate Change

11 May, 18 May, 30 May, and 1 June 2015
New York, NY, United States

The Foundry Theatre presented their 2015 Dialogue series This Changes Everything with events in New York City that will be livestreamed on global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on 11 May, 18 May, 30 May, and 1 June at 4 p.m. PDT (Los Angeles) / 6 p.m. CDT (Chicago) / 7 p.m. EDT (New York) / 23:00 GMT / 12 a.m. BST (London).

Supporting the Intersection of Art and Activism
Essay

Supporting the Intersection of Art and Activism

26 April 2015

Jennifer Sokolove talks about funding work around climate change, and how organizations can reimagine granting to support work at the intersection of art activism.

Out of Sight, Not Out of Mind—Hearing the Voices of the Future
Essay

Out of Sight, Not Out of Mind—Hearing the Voices of the Future

25 April 2015

Norwegian composer Marte Røyeng has created a musical exploring sustainability with children, hoping to help them think about big issues.

Walking The Awkwardly Heroic Yet Often Depressing Path of Near Impossible Catastrophe Evasion Through Kick-Ass Poetics
Essay

Walking The Awkwardly Heroic Yet Often Depressing Path of Near Impossible Catastrophe Evasion Through Kick-Ass Poetics

24 April 2015

Elizabeth Doud addresses the emergency of climate change and the need for a poetics to shift consciousness.

Where Is The Hope?
Essay

Where Is The Hope?

23 April 2015

Jeremy Pickard of Superhero Clubhouse searches for hope and asks impossible questions as he creates nine Planet Plays, which examine the world in the context of climate change.

The Nature of Positive
Essay

The Nature of Positive

22 April 2015

Australian scenic designer Tanja Beer explores designing with the intentions of enriching audiences as well as our environment and communities.

36.5 / a durational performance with the sea
Essay

36.5 / a durational performance with the sea

21 April 2015

Sarah Cameron Sunde explores the issue of water rising on our planet, explores the drastic changes through art, and implores people to consider the water.

Twitter Chat
Essay

Twitter Chat

How Can Artists Shift the Climate Change Story?—Thurs, April 23—Participate with hashtag #howlround

20 April 2015

This hour-long conversation will take place on Thursday, April 23 on hashtag #howlround at 11am PDT (Vancouver) / 1pm CDT (Austin) / 2pm EDT (Toronto) / 18:00 GMT / 7pm BST (London).

Looking for the Ending (Or is it the Beginning?)
Essay

Looking for the Ending (Or is it the Beginning?)

20 April 2015

Alanna Mitchell talks about transforming her book Sea Sick: The Global Ocean in Crisis into a one-woman show, and the conversation she found in theatre.

In Search of a New Aesthetic
Essay

In Search of a New Aesthetic

19 April 2015

Chantal Bilodeau kicks off the series Theatre in the Age of Climate Change with an account of her trip to the Canadian Arctic and how that changed how she wanted to write plays.

Before Resilience
Essay

Before Resilience

The Ethics of Theatre Production

17 April 2015

Adam R. Burnett looks at resilience in theatre, how artists seem to forget where they’ve been, and the ethical responsibilities in the production of production.

Devising The Environment
Essay

Devising The Environment

Experimenting Inside The Black Box

10 March 2015

In this last post in his series, Stephen Spotswood reports on the piece of theatre his students devised, and muses on its successes and everyone’s willingness to participate.

Devising the Environment
Essay

Devising the Environment

Finding A Narrative In The Noise

8 January 2015

Everyone starts to wonder what they’re creating with Stephen Spotswood on his journey to devise a piece with both environmental studies and theatre majors.

Trespass Theater
Essay

Trespass Theater

Jeff Stark on The Dreary Coast

18 December 2014

The Dreary Coast is a site-specific immersive work that took place in Brooklyn’s Gowanus Canal, and used elements of Greek and Roman mythology, Dante’s Inferno, black metal music, and the canal’s actual history to journey its audience through one of the most polluted waterways in the United States.

A devising workshop.
Devising The Environment
Essay

Devising The Environment

Mixing Science and Theater In The Classroom

26 November 2014

The class is split almost right down the middle between theater majors and environmental studies students, with a few crossovers. That first day we have a much more immediate question to answer: Did this mix of drama and science students have the capacity to merge together into the ersatz devising company we needed them to be? Would they be open-minded, generous, and willing to play? If not, the entire semester would be an uphill process.

CultureHub Logo
The Mirror up to Nature: Reflecting the Environment in Designs, Maps, and Theatre
Video

The Mirror up to Nature: Reflecting the Environment in Designs, Maps, and Theatre

Sunday 26 October2014
New York, NY, United States

CultureHub in New York City presented the discussion The Mirror up to Nature: Reflecting the Environment in Designs, Maps, and Theatre livestreamed on the global, commons-based peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Sunday 26 October at 22:00 GMT (London) / 6 p.m. EDT (New York) / 5 p.m. CDT (Austin) / 3 p.m. PDT (Vancouver) / 9 a.m. AEDT on Monday, October 27 (Sydney). In Twitter, use #howlround.

Climate Science’s Challenge to Artists
Essay

Climate Science’s Challenge to Artists

29 January 2014

Karen Malpede shares insight into the importance and compelling nature of climate dramas.