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Peacebuilding, Conflict Transformation, and Conflict Zones

This section features content created in conflict zones or in response to cultural, political, or social conflict. You can start by reading a conversation with Chilean playwright Guillermo Calderón about theatremaking in Chile during the fall 2019 crisis, a piece about the bombing of Gaza’s last-remaining arts space, or an essay about a project highlighting plays from Arab and Jewish playwrights about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The Latest

How Slovo. Theater Group Fights for Ukraine on the Cultural Front
Essay
How Slovo. Theater Group Fights for Ukraine on the Cultural Front
by Audrey Rose Dégez
6 December 2022
ArtsLink Assembly 2022: Greener Grass? Cultivating Transborder Connections Between Ukrainian Cultural Communities
Video
ArtsLink Assembly 2022: Greener Grass? Cultivating Transborder Connections Between Ukrainian Cultural Communities
A Platform for Ukrainian Artists, Curators, and Cultural Leaders to Share Perspectives and Ideas for the Future of the Cultural Life of the Country.
Wednesday 30 November to Friday 2 December 2022
Warszawa, Poland and Kyiv, Ukraine
Nothing About Us Without Us
Essay
Nothing About Us Without Us
How Theatre and Performance Art Can Help Migrants and Refugees in Situations of Uncertainty
by VIKTOR VILISOV
27 October 2022
Five performers, with one of them holding a baby, stand in a line on stage and hold a Ukrainian flag together.
How Slovo. Theater Group Fights for Ukraine on the Cultural Front
Essay

How Slovo. Theater Group Fights for Ukraine on the Cultural Front

6 December 2022

Slovo. Theater Group uses theatre as a tool to fight against cultural oppression by promoting Ukrainian culture abroad. Audrey Rose, the group’s producer, discusses the process of making theatre during active war as a way of resisting oppression and violence.

Arts Assembly 2022 event poster that says: Greener Grass?
ArtsLink Assembly 2022: Greener Grass? Cultivating Transborder Connections Between Ukrainian Cultural Communities
Video

ArtsLink Assembly 2022: Greener Grass? Cultivating Transborder Connections Between Ukrainian Cultural Communities

A Platform for Ukrainian Artists, Curators, and Cultural Leaders to Share Perspectives and Ideas for the Future of the Cultural Life of the Country.

Wednesday 30 November to Friday 2 December 2022
Warszawa, Poland and Kyiv, Ukraine

CEC ArtsLink presented ArtsLink Assembly 2022: Greener Grass? Cultivating Transborder Connections Between Ukrainian Cultural Communities livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network Wednesday 30 November to Friday 2 December 2022.

Five children in a dark room surrounded by cots.
Nothing About Us Without Us
Essay

Nothing About Us Without Us

How Theatre and Performance Art Can Help Migrants and Refugees in Situations of Uncertainty

27 October 2022

Theatremaker Viktor Vilisov examines the important role theatre can play in supporting migrants and refugees.

Kunafa and Shay Teaser Image.
Buffer Fringe Performing Arts Festival
Podcast

Buffer Fringe Performing Arts Festival

4 October 2022

In this special episode, Marina and Nabra sit down with Lebanese actor, theatremakers, and peacebuilder Raffi Feghali to talk about the Buffer Fringe Festival. Buffer Fringe is an annual festival with a mission for peacebuilding and social justice, organized by Home for Cooperation and situated in the buffer zone in Cyprus. Buffer Fringe runs 7-9 October 2022, presenting three days of international, interdisciplinary, experimental performances under the theme of Pockets (beyond). Join us as we explore improv in Lebanon, experimental theatre in a geographically contentious area, and artistic curation for peacebuilding.

event poster for puppets in the green mountains festival 2022.
Puppets in the Green Mountains 2022
Video

Puppets in the Green Mountains 2022

Access Through The Arts Panel Discussions Exploring the Theme of Roots and Wings

Saturday 10 September - Sunday 18 September 2022
United States

Sandglass Theater presented events from the Puppets in the Green Mountains Festival 2022 livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Saturday 10 September, Saturday 17 September, and Sunday 18 September 2022.

A person on the ground writing on a sign.
When Performance Art Is an Anti-War Instrument, Part Two
Essay

When Performance Art Is an Anti-War Instrument, Part Two

4 August 2022

In part two of his essay, Russian theatremaker Viktor Vilisov delves deeper into the performative nature of war itself and how art can create spaces for collective remembrance and grief.

Person holding a sign.
When Performance Art Is an Anti-War Instrument, Part One
Essay

When Performance Art Is an Anti-War Instrument, Part One

2 August 2022

Russian theatremaker Viktor Vilisov analyzes the power performance protest holds in opposing war, oppressive governments, and state violence.

Five men in white robes sitting in a semi-circle.
Exposing the Ills of Forced Marriage of Women and Young Girls in Nigeria Through the Theatre
Essay

Exposing the Ills of Forced Marriage of Women and Young Girls in Nigeria Through the Theatre

16 May 2022

In 2021, Nigerian director Josephine Awele Odunze directed a powerful production of Wedlock of the Gods by Zulu Sofola. Odunze sits down with Eseovwe Emakunu to discuss the play’s connections to issues Nigerian women face today, as well as her hopes that theatre can contribute to attaining true gender parity in Nigeria.

event poster for safe havens freedom talk Destroying History: Urbicide and Destruction of Cultural Heritage in Bamiyan.
Destroying History
Video

Destroying History

Urbicide and Destruction of Cultural Heritage in Bamiyan

Thursday 12 May 2022
Afghanistan

Safe Havens Freedom Talks presented a conversation Destroying History: Urbicide and Destruction of Cultural Heritage in Bamiyan in Afghanistan livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Thursday 12 May 2022 at 8:30 a.m. EDT (New York, UTC -7) / 12:30 p.m. UTC / 2:30 p.m. CEST (Stockholm, UTC +2) / 5 p.m. AFT (Kabul, UTC +4:30).

Six people dressed in fake soldier uniforms protest the war with a banner.
There Was Some Contemporary Culture Left in Russia. Then Putin Started a War.
Essay

There Was Some Contemporary Culture Left in Russia. Then Putin Started a War.

4 April 2022

Russian theatremaker Viktor Vilisov details the rapidly dwindling infrastructure for free expression in Russian culture in a time of war. As theatres and theatre workers navigate the deterioration of their sector, elements of performance persist in anti-war protests and state political messaging alike.

The Future Is Now: Conversations with Ambrose Idemudia Joshua and Rusanda Curcă
Podcast

The Future Is Now: Conversations with Ambrose Idemudia Joshua and Rusanda Curcă

12 November 2021
Creating a Platform for Black-Palestinian Solidarity
Essay

Creating a Platform for Black-Palestinian Solidarity

6 July 2021

Jen Marlowe shares how her documentary play There Is A Field became a framework for exploring Black-Palestinian solidarity.

protestors at the people's climate march
Puppets in Protest
Essay

Puppets in Protest

6 April 2021

Sarah Plummer discusses how puppets aid socially engaged groups during protests in three key ways: amplifying tension, creating accessible messaging, and evoking solidarity.

four actors onstage
There’s an Array of Theatrical Talent on Display in Kosovo. So Why Won’t Its Government Support It Properly?
Essay

There’s an Array of Theatrical Talent on Display in Kosovo. So Why Won’t Its Government Support It Properly?

25 January 2021

verity healey, who spent time in Kosovo for its Theatre Showcase last October, discusses the precarious nature of Kosovo’s independent theatre sector and shares her thoughts about the plays she saw while visiting.

three people standing outside
Liberating Terror
Essay

Liberating Terror

Clown and Activism

13 November 2020

Sayda Trujillo talks about white supremacy’s prevalence in clown pedagogy and shares how the invincible spirit of the clown has shaped her, “seeping through every tiny crack possible to make itself present to speak, to laugh, to sing, to bounce, to witness, and to encounter.”

triptych of three clowns
A Very Very Very Serious Clown from Lebanon
Essay

A Very Very Very Serious Clown from Lebanon

10 November 2020

Amrita Dhaliwal and Nathaniel Justiniano speak with Lebanese humanitarian clown Sabine Choucair, covering the differences between clowning and bouffon, joining the revolution, environmental work, and more.

Glod in red, a silhouette of a person with their arm raised.
A Discussion on Peace by Piece by Nabil Sawalha
Video

A Discussion on Peace by Piece by Nabil Sawalha

Part of BÉZNĂ Theatre's GLOD: Political Theatre as a Civil Right series

Monday 17 August 2020
International

Glod: Political Theatre as a Civil Right presented Peace by Piece by Nabil Sawalha livestreamed on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Monday 17 August 2020 at 10 a.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 1 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 6 p.m. BST (London, UTC +1) / 8 p.m. EEST (Cluj, UTC +3).

four actors onstage
Storytelling as an Act of Survival
Essay

Storytelling as an Act of Survival

The Tradition of Hakawati and its Influence on We Live in Cairo

10 December 2019

Lama El Homaïssi reflects on her experience working with American Repertory Theater on their musical We Live in Cairo, diving into representation in storytelling, the oral Hakawati tradition, and more.

protest image saying culture is the national fund.
Hungary’s Funding Emergency in the Performing Arts
Video

Hungary’s Funding Emergency in the Performing Arts

A call-to-action panel discussion about the context of this crisis and how to help.

Sunday 8 December 2019
Budapest, Hungary

A call-to-action panel discussion about Hungary’s funding emergency in the performing arts livestreamed from Jurányi performing arts theatre, Budapest on the commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv Sunday 8 December 2019 at 1:30 p.m PST (Los Angeles, UTC -8) / 4:30 p.m EST (New York, UTC -5) / 21:30 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 22:30 CET (Budapest, UTC +1) / 23:30 (Bucharest, UTC +2).

a large group of protesters with a Chilean flag
Theatremaking During Political Crisis
Essay

Theatremaking During Political Crisis

A Conversation with Chilean Playwright Guillermo Calderón

19 November 2019

ArtsEmerson Artistic Director David Dower speaks with Chilean playwright Guillermo Calderón about the ongoing protests in Chile.

close up of an actor playing the cello
The Search for Truth in Putin’s Russia
Essay

The Search for Truth in Putin’s Russia

How Teatr.doc’s “Civil Theatre” Is Exposing Injustice

4 June 2019

verity healey looks at Teatr.doc’s latest show, Torture, and the vital need for “truth-telling” theatre.

actors performing outside
Theatre During a Time of Upheaval
Essay

Theatre During a Time of Upheaval

15 May 2019

Farai Mabeza offers an overview of theatre in Zimbabwe, from the major theatre in the capital city, to smaller community theatres, to the country’s festivals.

actors onstage
From Kosovo
Essay

From Kosovo

A Playwright Who Provokes Change

4 April 2019

Karen Malpede sits down to talk with Kosovar playwright and provocateur Jeton Neziraj about freedom and theatre.

person onstage
From Gaza City to the Golden Gate
Essay

From Gaza City to the Golden Gate

A Call to the International Theatre Community to Join the Struggle for Cultural Justice

12 February 2019

With the bombing of Gaza’s last-remaining arts space—the Al Mishal Cultural Centre—in August 2018, Jessica Litwak and a group of international theatremakers are calling for justice.

 

four performers in parkas performing outside
The Rise of Climate Refugees in This Sinking Island
Essay

The Rise of Climate Refugees in This Sinking Island

24 January 2019

Maximilian Kempf discusses climate change theatre through the lens of the Anthropoligists’ show This Sinking Island.