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Theatre-In-Education Marc Goldstein The theatre education industry/movement has seen some rapid changes since its initial developments and establishment in the 1960's. However its origins mainly lie in the early years of the last century. It was the initial establishment of companies such as Bertha Waddell's in Scotland and Esme Church's in the north of England that thoroughly established the main roots of TIE. Mainly the initial aims of these companies was to stimulate, educate and inform young people through encouraging them to participate in enjoyable and imaginary based theatre programmes. Despite early attempts in Britain in the mid 1930's, where a Glasgow Director of education allowed the Bertha Waddell's company to perform in junior schools within school time, the majority of the advances within the movement came after World War Two. Due to the nature and after-effects of the time, many post war Education Authorities felt the need to sponsor drama and live theatre companies to aid in their areas learning processes. ...read more.


Boal had many links with the philosophy of TIE. Throughout his career Boal was engrossed with the political oppression in many South American countries. He sought to use theatre as a medium for confronting this oppression. One of the key areas with which Boal concerns himself is the role of the audience in the theatre experience. He strongly believes that the purpose of 'theatre of the oppressed' is to change the people (spectators), as passive beings into the subjects, actors and transformers of the action. For theatre-in-education the role of the audience is central. Based on Boal's theory the spectator is often used. By using the spectator central to the performance you are effectively giving the audience a voice and are thus stimulating the participants to take charge of their actions and make changes to the piece. In essence, the viewers become the viewed. Another central role is the role of 'the joker' who technically acts as a medium for the performance. He/she can stop or start the performance as and when required and can effectively referee the performance. ...read more.


Its key role, to inform and instruct a specific audience. Indeed, one could best describe TIE as using theatre for the sole purpose of educating. There are of course many strengths and weaknesses to theatre-in-education. Its main weakness lies within the unfortunate fact that it is not yet fully recognised by many local education authorities as having true educational value therefore it is increasingly difficult to allow the movements messages to spread to wider audiences. Furthermore funding is not easily accessible so thus limitations are put on the organisations capabilities. Its strength lies within its flexibility. Conventionally the schools drama curriculum has mostly adult drama therefore TIE establishes a new angle which is more likely to be productive as it uses techniques which allow for the children's imagination to be used to its full potential. Furthermore it often allows for issues to be raised that might not necessarily be easy to cover by traditional teachers. For example, it may highlight racism, homophobia, disability, all issues that traditionally the classroom might shy away from; instead TIE brings it to the forefront and allows for its open debate. ...read more.

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