Community Interactive Theater

Community Interactive Theater

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Community interactive theatre can be seen literary to be the interaction between the theatre and the community. In other words, it is a cultural intervention that combines theatre with social action, aesthetics, pragmatism, and social involvement with intent to generate real change within a community. It is a theatre where the audience, players, scenic and costume designers (and even at times the playwrights) are drawing from the community themselves. Community interactive theatre has metamorphosed into a practice that is quite engaging thereby inviting professional practitioners from the theatre, education and social work. One of the reasons for such invitation is that it has become quite engaging, breaking that imaginary barrier existing between the actors on stage and the audience as the community in this case. This barrier is usually referred to as ‘the fourth wall’ in the field of theatre arts.

It is indeed a learning experience for the participating community especially due to the fact that they are part of the solution.

In the originating theatre cultures, over the years, the impact of community theatre has resulted into some different schools of thought. While some see community theatre as a tool that facilitates articulation and social activism within marginalized groups, others see it from the community development angle as an additional practice at the social workers disposal. The latter sees it as a rehabilitative, therapeutic and educational tool for groups with special needs. Additionally, most local actors see it from the bottom-up viewpoint as a theatre that articulates the excluded life experiences of marginalized groups with the intention of creating a difference in their community.

Despite the differences in interpretation and ideology, it is generally agreed that the main outcome of interactive community theatre is for exchanging knowledge, creative and participatory learning to create change in the community. By this, all the participants are involved in a learning process.

. [1]

Link icon.png Web Resources
Below you have a list of selected websites where you can find additional information and interesting examples of exercises:
Link Content
International Theatre of the Oppressed Organization General information on Theatre of the Oppressed.
International Theatre of the Oppressed Organization/Workshop Example of a workshop of Theatre of the Oppressed.
Improv Encyclopedia/Games Sample of exercises useful to improve improvisation skills.
Improv Encyclopedia/References Reference section related to Improvisation Theatre.
Improv Encyclopedia/Glossary Glossary of terms related to Improvisation Theatre.
Improv wiki/Glossary Glossary of terms related to Breaking The Fourth Wall.
Improv Jstor/Glossary Glossary of terms related to History of theatre.
Creative Learning Glossary of terms related to Creative Learning.


  1. (27 May 2009), Wikipedia (27 May 2009)