The Theatre of the Oppressed
I have already mentioned in my ravings of the Fear and Loathing in Bris Vegas writings of how idols have affected me or inspired me throughout my life thus far, the earlier part of which had heavy leanings in the theatre department. My life lived and breathed drama and I would do anything to immerse myself in this world. It is little wonder then, that I too a degree in Drama and Theatre Studies to pursue my interests and along this journey, I was introduced to someone I now consider to fit the description of Idol, at least in my eyes and indeed to others that have studied his craft.
The person in question, is Augusto Boal, a Brazilian theatre practitioner who developed the Theatre of the Oppressed. By using theatre as a means to deliver knowledge and social concepts and transform this, by allowing the audience a voice, whereby they can interact with the performance and even change the direction that the narrative is taking. In doing so, “the people” are given a voice and can look at variable ways to impact or change things within society for the good.
Boal’s work has been recognised in the theatre industry globally and in 2008 was a Nobel Peace Prize Nominee in recognition of his contributions to society. I’ll leave this post from Democracy Now, which gives a descriptive background in an interesting Obituary, dedicated to his practice, including an interview in which Boal lends his views.