WOW! WE'VE HIT OUR MINIMUM! Now on to our 1st stretch goal - $9,000.
That means two awesome things have happened:
- Rewards unlocked - School bundles at 50% off plus Facilitator's Editions & on-site teacher training.
- An instant upgrade to all rewards with the new book (paperback or digital) because it funds professional documentation during this summer's final research stage with educators.
Shakespeare's Ensemble: Creative Ownership Project is a resource book with online support created by Creatively Independent that draws students to Shakespeare's playground because of their own point of view and curiosity, not because they "have to". Over five years, we've refined our process—combining play, mindfulness, and ensemble devising. Our work focuses on the student in front of you making it accessible and challenging for middle school through grad school - amateur to professional.
WHAT IS CREATIVE OWNERSHIP?
For five years, we've explored this process with three shows:
1. HAMLET (2011)
2. A Midsummer Night's Dream (2012)
3. Henry V - adapted into "To The Breach" (2014)
Henry V (2014) Creatively Independent/Rotations Theatre, Germany - young professionals in a highly stylized production with only 5 ensemble members
TOPICS INCLUDING IN THE BOOK:
- Making the material relevant through the students' eyes by activating their identity, intetion, and potential impact
- Establishing collaborative rituals and routines in the classroom to promote creative flow
- Freeing up teachers' limited resources (like time and energy) with ensemble building
- Cutting a play to challenge and support your current group. We include our edits of A Midsummer Night's Dream, Hamlet, and Henry V to show the range from traditional to drastic/interpretive edits
- Tools for every class/rehearsal process: Productive Play, Embracing Risk, Failing Gloriously
- Being inside the process - the student-teacher collaboration
- Responsibilities: student-led projects within a production
- Casting: how to assess and draw out unique skill sets within each student
- Guiding and backing off: when to push, provoke, support, and stand beside
- Activating creative ownership beyond Shakespeare
THE BOOK'S NOT DONE YET... We have one more research stage - teachers.
Stage 4: A Midsummer Night's Dream will be devised May 30- June 18, 2016 with Creatively Independent and an ensemble of teachers. During this stage, we'll create the Facilitator's Edition with extra coaching and exercises, plus online videos of the process.
As well as professional artists, these enthusiastic folks are full time, adjunct, and freelance teachers in middle school, high school, college, professional development and international institutions.
WHY A KICKSTARTER ?
Stages 1-3 were co-funded by Creatively Independent and other theatre companies, schools, arts foundations, and ticket-paying audiences.
Stage 4's need to focus on process takes out those key funders and makes your contributions essential towards our minimum goal of $6,000. We have kept the budget tight and already raised 50% of our costs to ensure housing, rehearsal and performance rental, and technicians.
OUR MINIMUM GOAL IS $6,000
8* teachers x $250/week x 3 weeks = $6,000
*Chris Beauieu is the 9th ensemble member, but as co-founder of Creatively Independent is waiving any stipend, as is Jess Pillmore for directing.
STRETCH GOAL #1 - $9,000: Allows us to professionally document the final stage and include those resources in the book and online.
STRETCH GOAL #2 - $12,000: Provides 50% of the book's editor and graphic designer's fees.
KICKSTARTER IS ALL OR NOTHING! TO SEE THIS THROUGH, WE NEED YOU!
**We can give schools a solid foundation in creative ownership with your help! Getting the word out, donating, and making a ruckus... It all becomes an investment in creative ownership for all!**
The need for ownership is crucial to creativity and education. As poet Adrienne Rich stated, “when someone with the authority of a teacher, say, describes the world and you are not in it, there is a moment of psychic disequilibrium, as if you looked in the mirror and saw nothing.”
We fully believe ensemble devising, play, and mindfulness are necessary tools for a student's journey towards owning their answers to:
- Who are you? (Identity)
- What do you want? (Intention)
- How does that extend beyond you? (Impact)
But for many educators, devising is either very new or used solely for creating new works; play is used in small doses; and mindfulness is more theory than practice. We believe it is because educators do not have the resources to learn, explore, and incorporate these tools with ownership themselves.
This must change.
And it can with your help!
This isn't about Shakespeare.
This isn't about arts education.
It's about empowering students to own their creative point of view through arts education and Shakespeare.
This shift would drastically alter education as we know it, addressing:
- The wave of learned helplessness in schools.
- Diversity and accessibility.
- The arts as vital to human development.
[VIDEO] By Lavilla School of the Arts/Aimee Barusch, a long time client, showing how our work reaches the students and staff beyond the skill - towards self-discovery.
Thank you for your time and support! Please spread the love and share the campaign with anyone who believes in progressive education, the arts, the student's voice, Shakespeare, and creative ownership.
So much love to you, rock stars! Your generosity is an investment in education that inspires and empowers!
ABOUT CREATIVELY INDEPENDENT
Co-Founders, Christopher Beaulieu and Jess Pillmore, have been teaching artists for over twenty years, empowering educators and sparking students with customized curriculum. In 2005, Creatively Independent was born from a desire to promote sustainable artistry and activate the arts in education, bringing back a balance of education–drawing out that which is latent–and training–passing down proven techniques. CI travels internationally tours 250+ days/year engaging students from toddler-professional in residencies, keynotes, consultations and physical theatre performances. Combined, Chris and Jess have directed/choreographed over 60 shows from Off-Broadway, Fringe, International, Regional and Educational. Chris is the current Movement Committee Chair for the Southeast Theatrical Conference, as well as a graduate of Dell’Arte International. When not on the road, CI is expanding their 7-acre retreat in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. Every summer, CI develops new works and offers professional development in teaching artistry and play. CI’s Artistic Director, Jess Pillmore is a published author. HowlRound features Jess’s Sustainable Artistry series her provocative essay on ageism towards children in education appeared in Psychology Today. Her book, Creatively Independent, was supported by international best-seller and frequent Ted speaker, Seth Godin. She is currently writing "A Fire Just Waiting", a new musical about a modern Joan of Arc featuring folk singer Ani DiFranco's music.
OUR TRAINING & AWARDS
TRAINING: MFA Interdisciplinary Arts (Goddard), BA Theatre (FSU), Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts, Movement Studio (NYC), Society of American Fight Directors, Pilobolus
AWARDS: Best Female Actor Combatant (Nat’l SAFD), Founder’s Award (Nat’l SAFD), Best Musical (Dir. /Chor., Minneapolis Fringe w/ Neo-Futurists)
TRAINING: Shakespeare & Co., Dell’Arte International, Society of American Fight Directors, Pilobolus
AWARDS: National Endowment for the Arts grant, Paddy Crean Award (Society of American Fight Directors)
"Chris has a gift as a director... Jess clears away the weeds to reveal a path to engage the real art and convergence of play.”
- Michael Fields (Producing Artistic Director, Dell'Arte International)
“It was a pleasure and a revelation watching Christopher open up a safe, joyous environment for the students to rediscover their sense of play. Through his use of deceptively simple children’s games, he took the temperature of the room, made instant assessments, and, by asking astute questions, allowed the students to make their own discoveries, have ownership of their work, and empowered them to go deeper into the material with greater ease and facility. I fully intend to use these techniques in my own classroom- I cannot recommend Chris highly enough!”
– J. David Brimmer (Assoc. Prof. NYU/Tisch & SAFD Fight Master)
“What Jess Pillmore is outrageously, poetically and inspiringly suggesting is that if we are willing to be responsible for the Consequences of our actions, we are free to make the choices we have yet to dream of making and in doing so open the floodgates of creativity and cooperation within ourselves and those around us. This just might lead to a world where the ‘golden rule’ is not a quote but a way.
- Daniel Stein (Clinical Professor, Head of Movement and Physical Theatre Brown Univ/Trinity Rep. MFA Acting Program)
Thank you! Please share far and wide!
Risks and challenges
With over 20 years of devising under our belts, and 10 years producing successful projects (plays, albums, books, tours), there is no risk in completing Stage 4, finishing the book and delivering our thank you goodies.
The true risk will be in our artistic choices, solely... And your help allows us to take more risks during the project! Your support enables us to focus on the process, break more ground in arts education and truly help educators and students with our research.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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