PVCC to host free theatre workshops

Piedmont Virginia Community College’s Theatre Department will hold “Theatre of the Oppressed Lab: Creativity and Democracy,” the first workshop in a free monthly series, on Saturday, Sept. 21, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The workshop is open to those 14 years of age and older and will take place in the Maxwell Black Box Theatre in PVCC’s V. Earl Dickinson Building on the college’s Main Campus in Charlottesville.

Associate Professor of Theatre Arts Brad Stoller, drama therapist Mecca Burns and artist/community activist Matthew Slaats will lead participants through a series of participatory games and exercises that were first developed in the 1960s. The practices were designed to address issues of power and privilege, spur social change and strengthen democracy in communities.

Stoller and Burns received training in Theatre of the Oppressed techniques directly from its creator, Brazilian thespian and activist Augusto Boal. They have facilitated workshops in communities across the U.S. and in Uganda, Kenya, Spain and Romania. Slaats is the creative director of local nonprofit PauseLab, and his work in the community focuses on participatory modes of democracy that strengthen residents’ voices in defining the future of their neighborhoods.

No experience is necessary to participate in the series, but pre-registration is required. For more information or to register, contact Stoller at 434.961.5246 or bstoller@pvcc.edu.

Additional dates for this series are Oct. 19 and Nov. 16, 2019, and Jan. 18, 2020, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. All sessions will take place in the Maxwell Black Box Theatre.

The workshops are part of PVCC’s 2019-20 Fine Arts and Performance Season. A full list of this season’s events is available online at www.pvcc.edu/performingarts.

The V. Earl Dickinson Building is located at the south end of College Drive. Ample free parking is provided, and the building is wheelchair accessible.