Letsema! / Collaborate! An intercultural exploration of ‘theatricality’ for young audiences
ASSITEJ South Africa and ASSITEJ Belgium join forces to facilitate research opportunities and international collaboration in theatre for young audiences for artists interested in cross-cultural exchange. The Cradle ReWired project explores: How work may be presented in real life, using innovative means, and when audiences are not able to engage normally with theatre/theatre spaces.
The programme will happen through digital engagement and mutual exploration between paired artists from South Africa and Belgium.
The project will examine the notion of “theatricality” and what components are needed or invented to bring an audience into a theatrical experience, and when some or all of the usual theatre elements may not be possible. It will provide insights into the realities within which artists live and work within their paradigms, and in so doing, broaden the scope for possibilities within the work itself.
The project hopes to foster innovation and dynamic exchange and support the creation of new work using new methodologies and approaches, which will allow audiences in Belgium and South Africa to access the arts.
CRADLE REWIRED – Creative Conversations: ASSITEJ SA and ASSITEJ Belgium
South African members are invited to apply with their digital productions for sharing with a dedicated, international audience. This is part of the broader artistic exchange with ASSITEJ Belgium.
How do these pieces of theatre translate across cultures? Does their meaning remain the same? What fresh interpretations do new audiences bring to an understanding of the piece for the artists who made them?
The selected South African work/s will be shared with an age-appropriate audience in Belgium, and a conversation will be facilitated between the theatre-makers and this audience.
In addition, Belgian works will be shared in South Africa, and the artists involved from both sides will have an opportunity to share their experiences of this cross-cultural exchange. This will be an opportunity to get to know one another’s audiences and realities.
This programme creates a national framework for connecting children and young people with the theatre best suited to them. It comprises an online catalogue for finding the best work most suited to the children and young people of our country, as well as an ongoing programme to make these connections.
Through Theatre4Youth, we take children to the theatre and take theatre to children in creches, community halls, schools, theatres and other spaces.
Full-time Theatre4Youth coordinators are currently based in a different province: Western Cape, Gauteng and KZN. We also have part-time representatives in all other provinces.
This dynamic team ensures that ASSITEJ SA knows what is happening in all parts of the country and that we are able to strategize to connect artists with audiences and vice versa.
In response to COVID-19, the site also provides space for virtual theatre and online workshops to be made available to schools, and children learning at home, across the country.
Kickstarter is our highly acclaimed and awarded arts-education programme supporting teachers to be able to deliver quality Creative Arts in schools. It targets teachers and community-based artist facilitators to build capacity in delivering the formal Creative Arts curriculum at Intermediate Phase. It uses an experiential, easily accessible, step-by-step methodology, which has been tried and tested since 2000. The programme is generously funded by Rand Merchant Bank.
Kickstarter works across four provinces, inclusive of Free State, Gauteng, KZN and Northern Cape, training 80 teachers across 40 schools on an annual basis.
Under lockdown, Kickstarter has gone virtual, and Artist-facilitators have created video material and other content for teachers to use to develop their teaching practice. ASSITEJ SA is working hard to ensure that teachers are supported during this challenging time. ASSITEJ SA has also contributed our Creative Arts approach to write the national textbooks soon to be released by the Department of Basic Education.
ASSITEJ SA is looking to recruit two new board members to ensure that we have the required capacity and skills to oversee our next phase of growth and expansion. We are particularly interested in attracting suitable candidates with skills and knowledge of either IT, Social Work/Child Psychology, Monitoring & Evaluation, Governance or Fundraising at a senior level.
The roles are unpaid voluntary positions. Board members are expected to attend four board meetings a year, and to stay abreast of life within the organisation between board meetings. Board members may be asked to join a sub-committee which could meet two or three times per annum, or be linked to a particular project.
Board meetings are held online, generally on Monday evenings, once a quarter.
About the roles
We are seeking to appoint two board members to join the board whose skills and experience will enhance the work of ASSITEJ SA.
We are seeking candidates who can demonstrate:
• Commitment to the objectives of ASSITEJ SA in terms of promoting access to the arts for children and young people, and the value of the arts in education
• Willingness to act as an ambassador for ASSITEJ SA and to promote its work in their personal capacity
• Willingness to fulfil the fiduciary duties of board members of ASSITEJ SA with integrity, honesty and passion
In addition, the prospective candidates should have at least one of the following:
Please submit a motivation letter (2-pages max). This should include at least two contactable references. In the motivation, kindly outline why you would like to become a board member of ASSITEJ SA and how your experience or knowledge could contribute to the work of the organisation.
Subject line: Application: Board Member for ASSITEJ SA
Closing date: 15 December 2021
Short-listed candidates may be asked to submit a supporting CV. They will be asked to meet with the Chair of the Board during January 2022 and attend the first Board meeting scheduled for late January 2022.
South African children and young people will have access to quality, performing arts especially designed for them, contributing to a more empathic, engaged and creative society.
We build the sector of theatre for young audiences in South Africa through supporting and developing the artists, empowering education through the performing arts, creating strategies for access to the arts, and advocating for the role of the arts as an essential right of every child and young person.
We are the official national centre of ASSITEJ (Association Internationale du Theatre de l’Enfance et la Jeunesse/International Association of Theatre for Children and Young People). (Link to ASSITEJ website: www.assitej-international.org)