Social Play

Social Play

Social Play was a two day workshop designed around movement, theater and art as a form of social change for artists, working professionals and students of any field interested in SEA. The workshop aimed to engage and stimulate the mind and body in a meditative and creative way with contextual concerns observed and experienced by participants in Pakistan.

The participatory model of this workshop is inspired by the techniques of the founder and practitioner of Theatre of the Oppressed, Augusto Boal and Sanjoy Ganguly. It aimed to encourage the audience to seek social justice via action in a safe space. Working with dramaturgical and Participatory Action Research (PAR) techniques (Singhal, 2004), we aim to engage & activate audiences; where facilitators and participants work together to understand a problematic situation and change it for the better.

The workshop was formatted in three stages in the following order:

1. Feeling
2. Thinking
3. Conclusion

Intial start of the workshop included theatre warm ups to shake, loosen and exhaust the participants which allowed them to fully immerse and get themselves comfortable to eventually create images for Forum Theatre which is large part of the Theatre of the Oppressed and of this workshop.

Mirroring exercises, meditation and movement with sound, and conscious actions and reactions of our own bodies were one of the first steps to induce empathy and anticipation for ‘The Other’ (read: participant) through guided tasks by the facilitator or ‘Joker’.

The workshop eventually moved into creating images with the body of different roles experienced and observed via various exercies (available in Resources section), and finally themes of conflict were introduced via Forum Theater through guided exercies.

At the end of every exercise was five-minute discussion - where discussions around power, social dynamics, personal & collective agency and thought process would take place. These discussions helped participants and moderators (together) in deconstructing, learning and unlearning various behaviours in our surrounding.

The second day of the workshop was formatted in a (slight) reverse order from day 1 whilst having a heavy emphasis on TO (Theater of the Oppressed) and Forum Theater.

1. Thinking
2. Feeling
3. Conclusion

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We would also like to especially thank T2f for their generosity for providing us with the space to conduct this workshop.

For more details and queries regarding the workshop, email at poiesis.socialart@gmail.com