In New York, on January 12 of this year (the first anniversary of the earthquake) we met one of the founders of FAVILEK, a Haitian women's group. Maricia Jean came to speak about her experience and that of so many women in the camps. She told us how she had first been raped during the 1990s upheaval, when rape was used as a political weapon. Now, her daughter had been raped in the camps. This is not uncommon -- that grandmothers, mothers and daughters all become victims. She solemnly told us the women in Haiti feel that they have no voice and no avenue for speaking out, and no access to the powers-that-be to express their terrible circumstances. She wants to create a theatre piece to address all of this, but lacks the means. We asked her, what do you need? Her answer took us by surprise: she said what they need is a theatre director, and help with how to go about creating a show. We told her, we of Bond Street Theatre can do this! And we are committed to help. Hearing this, Maricia’s face lit up and she broke out in a big smile. It was the first time she smiled all evening.
Bond Street Theatre will spend three weeks working with two local women’s groups, FAVILEK and KOFAVIV, to help give women a means to speak out about their lives by creating a new show that will be performed in the tent camps throughout Port-au-Prince. We will also bring uplifting performances to the children and families living in tent camps, using theatre to bring some much needed laughter, and as a means to help the community recover its joy and hope.
The project is the initial phase of a long-term commitment in Haiti. The company offers workshops and performances while exploring the best long-range means to address the pressing issues facing women and girls living in the camps. Three team members (Anna Zastrow, Christina Pinnell, and Joshua Wynter) are ready to head to Haiti to start work!
WHY THEATRE? Theatre gives voice to the voiceless and provides people with a safe environment and the creative tools to address critical problems that can directly improve their lives and their community. Worldwide, theatre, through its use of imagery, humor and non-verbal language is recognized as an effective means to disseminate practical information about crucial topics such as health, safety, and community services.
Check out the Haiti Page here: http://www.bondst.org/news/77/the-haiti-project
Read live Blog updates from Haiti: http://www.bondstreetblog.blogspot.com/
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- (30 days)