This course on devised theater is aimed at students who have experienced living in more than one culture and are interested in creating a multilingual theater piece inspired by their own experiences of crossing cultures, sensing boundaries, and the role of transformation. We will read selections from contemporary writers, such as Marjane Satrapi, Gloria Anzaldua, and Kapka Kassabova. We will build the performance by invoking myths, songs, dance, and poetry as a threshold to personal experience in diverse cultures.
Participants will select, devise, and dramatize episodes, including personal, family, and cultural myths, with their peers as a way to share a moment of challenge, survival, or resilience in dealing with borders, crossing boundaries, and what lies beyond. We will create an inclusive, multicultural narrative composed by all the students in the course. Songs, visual imagery, and movement sequences will also be collaboratively composed. This course will be conducted parallel to Burcu Seyben’s Migration: In Between Cultures course, allowing the two groups to have joint meetings to share knowledge, process, and discoveries. Themes of love, gender, sexuality, class, metamorphosis, obstacles, violence, and imagination will be investigated along with resilience, perseverance, and the power of art. We will use methodology from Augusto Boal, Ping Chong’s Undesirable Elements, Frantic Assembly, and the Tectonic Theater Project. The course will culminate in a performance of the devised piece.