ASC theater professor attends Oregon workshop

(08-19-2009)

Adams State College Professor of Theatre Dr. John Taylor attended The Illumination Project's Summer Institute at Portland Community College in Oregon. He was one of 25 individuals selected to participate in the workshop which was funded by a Ford Foundation Difficult Dialogues grant.

"It was an incredible week of learning," Taylor said. "I am coming back Adams State with so many new ideas that will help me to continue my work in classroom and in my theatre productions. For example, I am developing a new community-based theatre project for next year that focuses on conflict resolution using the techniques I learned as well as Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet."

According to the Portland Community College website, the Illumination Project uses interactive theater to address issues of oppression and to foster a climate of equality, compassion, justice, and respect for all people in the PCC academic community and community-at-large.

During the weeklong institute, Taylor and his co-participants explored the techniques of the Illumination Project and Theatre of the Oppressed. Theatre of the Oppressed is a form of theatre, invented by Augusto Boal, to promote civic engagement, meaningful community dialogues, and problem solving around issues of race, class, culture, gender, immigration, religion and sexual orientation etc.

"After attending this workshop, I am more convinced than ever that the theatre must be a place where society can examine issues of the day and transform the world in which we live."

Taylor's trip was funded by the award he won as a 2009 ASC Presidential Scholar.

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