How to create an art experience in which the young audience feels at home and included?
To develop 3Place – involve – artistic – physical, each partner has chosen the topic based on their strengths, resources and needs for development. Each topic has a year-long focus with a camp, a festival visit, digital workshops and ongoing field work in each organisation and their community.
Dark Theatre will focus on 3Place Artistic
As a co-organizer of the international festival REGIONS, organiser of international students’ meeting Gaudeamus Theatrum and as a regular guest of other international festivals Drak also can share and compare their experiences with foreign practice. All these activities provide a good basis for activities in Third place. Drak will focus on the Third place; Artistic and Involve.
Education is an integral part of their practice and experience, but they would now like to try out new formats of workshops following the artistic process of production of performances to engage and make the performing arts relevant to their young audience. The aim of the workshop is to deepen the experience with the performance and broaden the context in the form of joint practical activities based on the methodology of theatre teaching and drama education under the guidance of a theatre lecturer.
Methodical inspiration, on the other hand, is a guide for teachers, based on which they can work with their students before and after visiting the theatre – it connects the production with the school curriculum and gives specific tools (in the form of activities, games and topics for discussion) to develop selected competencies of students. With young participants from other countries, their local artists and audience will meet new perspectives and possibilities for their place to gain the third dimension of belonging, also
for non-locals. Drak is also experienced working in the public space, which will inform the other partners in the collaboration. They will develop one camp, in addition to local fieldwork and one digital workshop each year.
Drak is a Hradec Králové theatre based not only on the traditions of (East) Bohemian puppetry, but also on the principle of devised productions building on imagination and unique originality, aimed at children as well as adults. Throughout their history, Drak has been pioneering new methods and creative approaches, which has brought them several awards, both national and international.
Over 60 years, productions of Drak, a proud heir of the strolling puppetry legacy, have been seen by spectators in more than 650 towns and cities located in 38 countries over five continents. In 2010 theatre expanded: a venue called Labyrint opened, featuring a new studio stage, interactive laboratory and exhibition spaces, which led to the reopening of the International Institute of Figurative Theatre, and to the development of educational, exhibition and residential programmes. Creation for youth audiences form an important part of the Drak Theatre’s repertoire and represent one of the key priorities of the theatre’s current artistic management, which they want to further develop it. At the same time, they
consider production for youth to be an extremely important area in the context of the entire theatrical production, which is still unjustly neglected and underestimated. Therefore, from the position of one of the important Czech theatres for children and youth, we want to support the further development of this area not only through our own production, but also organisationally. The first step on this path was the successful implementation of the conference Who’s Afraid of Theatre for Youth? in November 2021 at the Drak Theatre, which aroused great interest both
across the Czech theatre community and among teachers. The lively discussion that broke out at the conference confirmed that this topic is important not only for their theatre, but resonates with all the groups mentioned, and we have therefore decided to pay special attention to it in the upcoming period.
We intend to do so through their own staging work or theatre in education programs linked to it, the offer of interesting foreign inspirations and by initiating the establishment of a specialised Czech theatre network focused on the youth production.