The Freedom Theatre

The Freedom Theatre is developing a vibrant and creative artistic community in the northern part of the West Bank. While emphasising professionalism and innovation, the aim of the theatre is also to empower youth and women in the community and to explore the potential of arts as an important catalyst for social change. Through its work, The Freedom Theatre aims to: - Raise the quality of performing arts and cinema in the area. - Offer a space in which children and youth can act, create and express themselves freely, imagining new realities and challenging existing social and cultural barriers. - Empower the young generation to use the arts to promote positive change in their community. - B...
Jun 11, 2013

Visiting communities in the West Bank and '48 Pale

Since the March Freedom Ride, the Freedom Bus troupe has been busy visiting communities in the West Bank and ’48 Palestine!

Families Interrupted, organized by Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, opened at Al-Midan Theatre in Haifa.  This event included a photographic exhibition, panel discussion, and performance by the Freedom Bus troupe.  The event brought attention to the Israeli Citizenship Law – one of 50 apartheid laws that discriminate against Palestinians with Israeli citizenship.  Approximately 200 people attended this event.

The Freedom Bus troupe also took part in M.A.N – Music & Nature.  The aim of this festival was to strengthen cultural and artistic exchanges between Palestinians and Syrians in occupied Golan.  The event included interactive workshops, theatre, and live music from Arabic bands and artists including Akhir Zafir (Amman), Toot Ard (Golan), Jowan Safadi and Fish Samak (Haifa) and the artists Ala Azzam and Ruba Shamshoum.  The Freedom Bus troupe performed Our Sign is the Stone and also used Playback Theatre to enact stories shared by audience members. 

Our Sign is the Stone is a production based on testimonies gathered from the village of Nabi Saleh.  The play attests to the struggles, sacrifices and steadfastness of Palestinian communities engaged in civil resistance against Israeli practices of land confiscation and discrimination.  In addition to its performance at this festival, Our Sign is the Stone was performed four other times reaching over 300 people.

We are so proud of the work the Freedom Bus trope has accomplished in a very short time.  Thank you once again for your support!  Your gift has meant so much to the growing, dynamic group of artists we work with!!  Tomorrow (12 June 2013) is another Bonus Day on GlobalGiving!!  All donations made to the Freedom Bus project will be matched at 40%!  Don’t miss out!  Plan your gift early – matching begins at 9am EDT and we know we can count on you!!

Mar 20, 2013

March Freedom Ride/ Ride for Water Justice

Core Training in Playback Theatre with Jo Salas
Core Training in Playback Theatre with Jo Salas

The March Freedom Ride (17 March till 29 March) has been organized with several grassroots organizations and is currently taking students, artists, and activists through the Jordan Valley and South Hebron Hills.  This arts and educational event began this past Sunday, 17 March 2013 with an orientation at The Freedom Theatre followed by a night of music and Playback Theatre.  The evening proved to be a great ice breaker for participants as they got a chance to learn about each other through the telling of stories, some experiencing Playback Theatre for the first time. 

For the past 3-days participants have been in the Jordan Valley taking part in building and reconstruction work, tree planting, guided walks, and discussion groups while enjoying evenings filled with Playback Theatre, live music, Dabke, and other cultural events.  After the Jordan Valley participants will make their way to the South Hebron Hills.

In preparation for the ride a Core Training in Playback Theatre was held in February, facilitated by the founder of Playback Theatre Jo Salas.  Participants in this workshop acquired and/or strengthened their skills and knowledge about the philosophy and application of this applied theatre art.  In an effort to learn more about the communities taking part in the ride and to strengthen our working relationship with community members, the Freedom Bus held a solidarity stay in February in the Jordan Valley in the communities of Ein Al Hiluwa and Khirbit Samra.  The main objective of this event was to raise awareness about Israeli apartheid practices and to engage children in exercises that stimulate their imagination and creativity.

The March Freedom Ride has been organized to correspond with International World Water Day, held annually on 22 March as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.  An international day to celebrate freshwater was recommended at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED).  The United Nations General Assembly responded by designating 22 March 1993 as the first World Water Day in light of the increase in demand for water access, allocation, and services.

This year, the Freedom Bus will highlight issues of inequality surrounding water allocation and the accompanying social and economic impact upon Palestinian communities living in the Jordan Valley.  Day 6 of the ride, which falls on 22 March, will consist of an all-day solidarity walk from Mak-hul to Ras Al Ahmar via Al Hadidya followed by an evening of Music (featuring DAM, Toot Ard, and Ministry of Dub-Key).

Core Training in Playback Theatre with Jo Salas
Core Training in Playback Theatre with Jo Salas
Core Training in Playback Theatre with Jo Salas
Core Training in Playback Theatre with Jo Salas
Day 3 - March Freedom Ride 2013
Day 3 - March Freedom Ride 2013
Day 3 - March Freedom Ride 2013
Day 3 - March Freedom Ride 2013
Day 3 - Abu Naji, Zajaal Poet,March Freedom Ride
Day 3 - Abu Naji, Zajaal Poet,March Freedom Ride

Links:

Feb 7, 2013

Final Report but Not Goodbye

Brick making
Brick making

In just 6 weeks, the Freedom Bus troupe will embark on its March Freedom Ride!  In preparation for the March ride and those to come the Freedom Bus troupe has been engaging in performances and workshops throughout the West Bank and Egypt.

This past January the Freedom Bus troupe visited the communities of Fasayi’il al-Fauqa and Fasayi’il al-Wusta in the Jordan Valley joining them in their struggle to remain on community land.  This three-day event included mud-brick making, building work, discussions, storytelling for children, Playback Theatre, and traditional music. 

From the 20th January to February 2nd the Freedom Bus traveled to Egypt for the second annual Playback Theatre workshop in Cairo. This 4-day intensive workshop led by the Freedom Bus troupe provided participants with the opportunity to learn and practice basic elements of Playback Theatre while trying out different roles; such as story-teller, conductor, musician, and actor.

The Freedom Bus troupe and the communities we serve would like to thank you for your support!  We have updated this project and to eliminate duplication on GlobalGiving site this page will need to come down but no need to worry as you will still be able to follow and support us by searching The Freedom Bus – Community Theatre (just as before).  We apologize for any confusion this might cause and encourage you to continue supporting the Freedom Bus troupe and to visit our project page, The Freedom Bus – Community Theatre (same name, same project).

Next week we will be posting a new video, which by the way we will be entering into the GlobalGiving video contest – so be sure to have a look and lets us know what you think.  Lots of exciting things happening in the next few months and we hope you will stay with us for the ride…

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