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Political Theatre

Content here focuses on theatremakers, companies, and projects engaging with politics and political action. A great example of the power of this work is the video series Political Theatre as a Civil Right from the British-Romanian political theatre company BÉZNĂ Theatre.

The Latest

Livestreaming a Conversation: Freedom Talk at the Power of Art
Video
Livestreaming a Conversation: Freedom Talk at the Power of Art
We Don’t Call It Occupation, We Call It Ihtilal, Suffocation
Friday 8 July 2022
Jenin, Palestine
Livestreaming a Convening: Canales Abiertos / Open Channels
Video
Livestreaming a Convening: Canales Abiertos / Open Channels
Un Taller de Teatro Popular del Caribe desde Santiago de Cuba y Nueva Orleans / A Caribbean Theatre Workshop from Santiago de Cuba & New Orleans
Saturday 9 July 2022
Santiago de Cuba
Freedom Talk@SpeakUp
Video
Freedom Talk@SpeakUp
Focusing on the Situation of Artistic Freedom and Public Art in Turkey
Tuesday 14 June 2022
Turkey
open channels 2022 poster.
Livestreaming a Convening: Canales Abiertos / Open Channels
Video

Livestreaming a Convening: Canales Abiertos / Open Channels

Un Taller de Teatro Popular del Caribe desde Santiago de Cuba y Nueva Orleans / A Caribbean Theatre Workshop from Santiago de Cuba & New Orleans

Saturday 9 July 2022
Santiago de Cuba

The Stone Center for Latin American Studies, The Cuban and Caribbean Studies Institute of Tulane University (New Orleans, Louisiana), and Estudio Teatral Macubá present Canales Abiertos 2022 livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Saturday 9 July at 7 a.m. PDT (Los Angeles, UTC -7) / 9 a.m. CDT (Mexico City, UTC -5) / 10 a.m. EDT (Santiago de Cuba, UTC -4).

event poster for freedom talk at the power of art.
Livestreaming a Conversation: Freedom Talk at the Power of Art
Video

Livestreaming a Conversation: Freedom Talk at the Power of Art

We Don’t Call It Occupation, We Call It Ihtilal, Suffocation

Friday 8 July 2022
Jenin, Palestine

Safe Havens Freedom Talks (SH|FT) presents a Freedom Talk at Power of Art: We Don’t Call It Occupation, We Call It Ihtilal, Suffocation livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Friday 8 July at 8:30 a.m. EDT (New York, UTC -7) / 12:30 p.m. UTC / 2:30 p.m. CEST (Stockholm, UTC +2) / 3:30 p.m. EEST (Jenin, UTC +3).

event poster for freedom talk at speak up.
Freedom Talk@SpeakUp
Video

Freedom Talk@SpeakUp

Focusing on the Situation of Artistic Freedom and Public Art in Turkey

Tuesday 14 June 2022
Turkey

Safe Havens Freedom Talks presented a Safe Havens conversation at Speak Up livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Tuesday 14 June 2022 at 8:30 a.m. EDT (New York, UTC -7) / 12:30 p.m. UTC / 2:30 p.m. CEST (Stockholm, UTC +2) / 3:30 p.m. TRT (Istanbul, UTC +3).

A person standing amongst city approved homeless deterrent pegs on a bench.
Humanizing Homelessness: An Interview with Lisa Hoelscher of Gathering Ground Theatre
Essay

Humanizing Homelessness: An Interview with Lisa Hoelscher of Gathering Ground Theatre

19 May 2022

Gathering Ground Theatre—an Austin, Texas collective comprised of people with lived experiences of homelessness and allies—creates performances that aim to influence public opinion and local legislation. Anna Rogelio Joaquin sits down with Lisa Hoelscher to discuss Lisa’s experience as a co-creator and performer of works that expose issues like hostile architecture and camping bans, as well as the company’s current work on a memorial performance.

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).

event poster for the gathering 2022.
The Gathering from the CrossCurrents Festival
Video

The Gathering from the CrossCurrents Festival

Productions, Readings, Discussions, and Workshops Focusing on Climate Change, Immigration, and Indigeneity

Wednesday 4 May to Saturday 7 May 2022
United States

The Laboratory for Global Performance and Politics at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. presented The Gathering, livestreamed on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv from Wednesday 4 May to Saturday 7 May 2022.

event poster for the safe havens freedom talk Intersectionality Matters.
Intersectionality Matters
Video

Intersectionality Matters

Problematising the Mainstream Discourse on Gender Analysis in Afghanistan

Wednesday 4 May 2022
Afghanistan

Safe Havens Freedom Talks presented a conversation Intersectionality Matters: Problematising the Mainstream Discourse on Gender Analysis in Afghanistan livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Wednesday 4 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).

Kunafa and Shay Teaser Image.
Site-Specific and Devised Theatre in Lebanon
Podcast

Site-Specific and Devised Theatre in Lebanon

With Sahar Assaf & Zeina Daccache

20 April 2022

Site-specific performances have the possibility to truly make all the world a stage. To produce site-specific and devised theatre performances in the United States and abroad, artists must engage with the questions of the politics of any space, what communities inhabit or use it, and who is invited into it. Sahar Assaf, a Lebanese theatremaker and the new artistic director of Golden Thread Productions, and Zeina Daccache, an actor, director, and the founder of Catharsis: Lebanese Center for Drama Therapy come together to talk about site-specific and devised theatre pieces in Lebanon, the rest of the MENA world, and the United States.

event poster for new york theatre artists for ukraine with yellow and blue ukrainian flag.
New York Theatre Artists for Ukraine
Video

New York Theatre Artists for Ukraine

A 12-hour online marathon of readings and conversations with 24 New York theatre institutions

Saturday 16 April 2022
New York City

The Martin E. Segal Theatre Center presented New York Theatre Artists for Ukraine: A 12-hour online marathon of readings and conversations with 24 New York theatre institutions livestreaming on the commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Saturday 16 April 2022 at 7 a.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 10 a.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 5 p.m. EEST (Kyiv, UTC +3).

Kunafa and Shay Teaser Image.
Theatre as Advocacy/Palestinian Theatre
Podcast

Theatre as Advocacy/Palestinian Theatre

With Ahmed Masoud and Hanna Eady

13 April 2022

Theatre is a powerful tool for political and community advocacy efforts. From the stage to the streets, theatre can illuminate underheard narratives, reveal different perspectives on political events, and humanize the struggles of groups. There is a long history of theatre as a tool for advocacy in the Palestinian community in the US and abroad. In this episode, we talk to two Palestinian writers and theatremakers who have been using the art form as a way to bring awareness to the conflict in Palestine, give audiences with concrete tools for change, and provide direct relief to Palestinians internationally.

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.

event poster for Tonight my Heartbeat is Uneven:  Artists Respond to the War in Ukraine Tonight my Heartbeat is Uneven Artists Respond to the War in Ukraine.
Tonight my Heartbeat is Uneven
Video

Tonight my Heartbeat is Uneven

Artists Respond to the War in Ukraine

Wednesday 30 March 2022
United States

Arlekin Players Theatre presented Tonight my Heartbeat is Uneven: Artists Respond to the War in Ukraine livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network on Wednesday 30 March 2022 at 10 a.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 1 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 5 p.m. GMT (London, UTC +0) / 7 p.m. EET (Kyiv, UTC +2).

event poster for talleres for dreaming episode 3.
Artists are the Vanguard of Revolution
Video

Artists are the Vanguard of Revolution

An Artist Talk by Kristiana Rae Colón

Tuesday 22 March 2022
United States

Cara Mía Theatre’s Mellon Playwright in Residence Virginia Grise presented Talleres for Dreaming: Episode 3 livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network on Tuesday 22 March 2022 at 4 p.m. PST (San Francisco, UTC -8) / 6 p.m. CST (Chicago, UTC -6) / 7 p.m. EST (New York, UTC -5).

SEGAL TALKS with Maria Bruni and Golenko Maxim Georgievich (Ukraine)
Video

SEGAL TALKS with Maria Bruni and Golenko Maxim Georgievich (Ukraine)

Join us for an urgent conversation with Ukrainian theatre artists Maria Bruni and Golenko Maxim Georgievich

Friday 18 March 2022
United States

The Martin E. Segal Theatre Center presented SEGAL TALKS, a conversation about curating, producing, and presenting theatre and performance in the time of COVID with Maria Bruni and Golenko Maxim Georgievich (Ukraine), livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network on Friday 18 March 2022 at 12 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 4 p.m. GMT (UTC +0) / 6 p.m. EET (UTC +2).

portrait of the artist wearing a tophat and looking through a monacle.
Coffeehouse Chronicles #162 with Penny Arcade
Video

Coffeehouse Chronicles #162 with Penny Arcade

Part Artist-Portrait, Part History Lesson, and Part Community Forum, Coffeehouse Chronicles Takes an Intimate Look at the Development of Downtown Theatre in New York City

Saturday 5 March 2022
United States

La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club presented Coffeehouse Chronicles #162 with Penny Arcade livestreaming on the commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv livestreaming on Saturday 5 March 2022 at 12 p.m. PST (San Francisco, UTC -8) / 2 p.m. CST (Chicago, UTC -6) / 3 p.m. EST (New York, UTC -5).

event poster for school of resistance right to regularisation.
School of Resistance: Right to Regularization
Video

School of Resistance: Right to Regularization

Raising the Voice of Undocumented Refugees in Belgium and Europe

Friday 4 March - Saturday 5 March 2022
Ghent, Belgium

IIPM and NTGent presented School of Resistance: Right to Regularization livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Friday 4 March and Saturday 5 March 2022.

An audience sits in a dark red theatre, watching actors in costume perform.
Freedom and Theatre: An International Meditation
Essay

Freedom and Theatre: An International Meditation

24 February 2022

Producing artistic director Kellie Mecleary shares her experience participating in Vaba Lava Narva Theatre Centre’s first International Freedom Theatre Festival in Estonia.

event poster for safe havens freedom talk the power of art event.
The Power of Art
Video

The Power of Art

To Create and to Oppose: People Will Not Listen to Politicians, but They Will Listen to Artists

Friday 4 February 2022
Norway

Safe Havens Freedom Talks presented a conversation on The Power of Art livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Friday 4 February 2022 at 8:30 a.m. EST (New York, UTC -5) / 14:30 CET (Oslo, UTC +1).

School of Resistance
Video

School of Resistance

Pitfalls of Representation: Assemblies in Theatre

Saturday 29 January 2022
Ghent, Belgium

NTGent presented School of Resistance, Pitfalls of Representation: Assemblies in Theatre livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Saturday January 29 2022 at 10 a.m. PST (San Francisco, UTC -8) / 1 p.m. EST (New York, UTC -5) / 19:00 CET (Ghent, UTC +1).

Several performers with large puppets standing in a field.
Ground Lessons: Performing with the Potato People at Bread and Puppet
Essay

Ground Lessons: Performing with the Potato People at Bread and Puppet

26 January 2022

Denise Rogers Valenzuela shares the way that learning to perform improvised crowd scenes with large, flat puppets—called naked population puppets or potato people—encourages an embodied practice that resists individualism.

Close on the faces of  three actors staring into the camera.
The Fight for the Right to Vote
Essay

The Fight for the Right to Vote

13 January 2022

Carlyle Brown’s Down in Mississippi is a celebration of a movement that gave birth to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Brown sat down with Todd London in October 2020 to discuss the creative process, historical context, and contemporary resonance of his play.

Poster for Addressless.
A Conversation About the Making of Addressless
Video

A Conversation About the Making of Addressless

An interactive theatrical game about housing insecurity

Tuesday 11 January 2022
United States

Rattlestick and Center for International Theatre Development presented a conversation about the making of Addressless livestreaming on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network Tuesday 11 January 2022 at 12 p.m. PST (Los Angeles, UTC -8) / 2 p.m. CST (Chicago, UTC -6) / 3 p.m. EST (New York, UTC -5) / 20:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 21:00 CET (Budapest, UTC +1).

Several people dancing together in a room.
Thinking Through Racism: Nigerian Theatre’s Response
Essay

Thinking Through Racism: Nigerian Theatre’s Response

11 January 2022

Eseovwe Emakunu sits down with theatre practitioner Israel Wekpe to discuss how he and other Nigerian theatre artists use theatre to address racism and discrimination.

event poster for school of resistance: Art in conflicted areas.
Practices from Euromaidan to Belarus / Art in Conflicted Areas
Video

Practices from Euromaidan to Belarus / Art in Conflicted Areas

Conversations questioning civil and artistic practices of resistance.

Friday 17 December 2021
Munich, Germany

IIPM and NTGent in collaboration with the Münchner Kammerspiele presented School of Resistance: Practices from Euromaidan to Belarus / Art in conflicted areas livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Friday 17 December 2021 at 8 a.m. PST (Los Angeles, UTC-8) / 11 a.m. EST (New York, UTC -5) / 16:00 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 17:00 CET (Munich, UTC +1) / 18:00 EET (Kyiv, UTC +2).