Perspectives and conditions for theatre makers worldwide
The stage is the world. What seemed well possible at Shakespeare’s times proves to be foolish today: thinking about the world as a unit that can be comprehended from one single perspective, namely the European perspective. Already, the public awareness for political and economical globalization has been concerned. Regarding culture, however, there is this subtle hybrid idea Europe being the hub of the universe. This is especially identifiable for our understanding of theatre. With theatre we are still thinking purely European. In consequence, we train and further the skills, and we rate the quality of a theatre production in this way. Theory and practice of European theatre is norm and benchmark that serve as a rule for our judgment. With Theaterwelten we aim to break away from this fixation. The basic idea of Theaterwelten is a broadened thinking. At Theaterwelten we want to reveal the awareness for the diversity of theatre, for the different worlds of theatre. Through distinct and hands-on experiences a deeper understanding is determined for different theatre concepts and diverse significances of theatre in areas distant from Europe. Experience through productions, acting in the course of mutual workshops, and reflection by way of lectures, seminars, exhibitions and discussion forums is the inner trio of arrangements. Target and principle of Theaterwelten is the encounter with other, non-European ideas and approach in the theatre field at eye-level. Therefore, the six global regions (Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia and Oceania as well as North and South America) are equally represented. (1 workshop, 1 production per region). With Theaterwelten the focus is on a comprehensive concept of theatre work. The point is that social and cultural procedures are recognized differently and responded to in distinctive ways. The understanding of theatre must not restrict itself to aesthetic categories, but should rather include political and social criteria. Theatre is a social power.
Theaterwelten believes that amateur theatre can be a social alternative to face geo-political realities and to overcome boundaries. And this in a playful and simple way. A specific togetherness that elicits enthusiastic emotions, thus really creating an encounter at eye level for a while. In doing so the level of hand-on workshops has to be opened to at least two dimensions. The staging of distinctive theatre world by presenting their productions is essential and will add to the general picture of theatre worlds. Representation as second dimension, next to hands-on activities in workshops as first dimension. They are the basic conditions of reciprocal appreciation and mutual understanding.
The third dimension is that of reflection. Here, anything but the reflection of the previously seen by the participants is addressed, although Theaterwelten would well be suitable to develop a school of observing. No, the crucial task of third dimension “sense” is to examine the different conditions of theatre making in this world. Theatre allows the actor and the audience a deeper understanding of the world. Theatre performances represent a distinct culturally shaped image of the world. By cultural diversity the theatre forms of the world regions shape a heterogeneous understanding of the world. Theaterwelten sustainably allows people new access and participation and enables them to achieve cultural diversity. The long-term goal must be to also carry out Theaterwelten in all other regions in order to establish a lasting network. The Theaterwelten blog has also been launched and is meant to be maintained for not losing contacts between the meetings. Here, one can follow all activities or express new ideas and perspectives. The blog is one possibility to continue and a platform for all who like to participate.