A Participatory Approach to Youth & Community Development

A case study created by Kieran Gopaul.

;xSTx;br;xETx;;xNLx;This is a multimedia case study of a participatory theatre arts program for youth that was made possible through [University of Southern California’s M.A. in Applied Theatre Arts](https://dramaticarts.usc.edu) (USC), and its community partnership with [Los Angeles High School of the Arts](http://lahsa-lausd-ca.schoolloop.com/) (LAHSA). The approach and methods used reflect the core of USC’s graduate program in Applied Theatre Arts, namely Paulo Freire’s and August Boal’s participatory and critical approach to education and theatre respectively. As graduate students, [Rosie Marston-Higdon](http://scalar.usc.edu/works/digital-assemblage/index) and I co-designed and facilitated this program from January-May 2013. I created this case study to document and share the work we, facilitators-in-training and youth participants accomplished together.;xNLx;;xSTx;br;xETx;;xNLx;I have summarized this program through four objectives that appear sequentially in this web-based timeline, although they overlap in practice. The first objective, ;xSTx;span style="font-size: 14px; font-style: italic";xETx;Sharing Responsibility;xSTx;/span;xETx;, is to establish trust in a group setting. The second objective, ;xSTx;span style="font-size: 14px; font-style: italic";xETx;Mind & Body Awareness;xSTx;/span;xETx;, is to focus on the natural expression of our bodies to elicit personal stories that are shared using theatre and art-based activities. The third, ;xSTx;span style="font-size: 14px; font-style: italic";xETx;Critical Consciousness;xSTx;/span;xETx;, is to consider how our own stories are related to our surrounding environment, and its socio-economic realities. The fourth objective, ;xSTx;span style="font-size: 14px; font-style: italic";xETx;Creating Our Own Narrative;xSTx;/span;xETx;, is for youth, and in some instances members of their community, to collectively create original theatre performances that provide a space for self-expression, dialogue, and rehearsing alternative responses to challenging situations. A short introduction provides background and in a conclusion, I reflect on co-facilitating this cultural process for youth and community development. ;xNLx;;xSTx;br;xETx;

2013-01-15 00:00:00

A Community Partnership

2013-02-01 00:00:00

Sharing Responsibility

2013-03-01 00:00:00

Mind & Body Awareness

2013-04-01 00:00:00

Critical Consciousness

2013-05-01 10:20:00

Creating our own Narrative

2013-06-01 14:00:33

Reflections on our Work

2013-07-01 00:00:00

Sources of Inspiration

A Participatory Approach to Youth & Community Development

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