Theater for Change UW

Theater for Change UW (TfC UW) uses interactive and participatory theater to advance community dialogue and address issues related to classroom and institutional climate.

We use Theater of the Oppressed and other participatory theater approaches to:

  • Generate and rehearse a variety of responses to challenging situations related to inequity, institutional climate, and interpersonal conflicts.
  • Advance dialogue among faculty, students, staff educators, and administrators about issues of power, privilege, and oppression that affect us all.
  • Promote performance and arts-based pedagogies (i.e., active learning and multi-modal approaches) in educational settings.
  • Co-create inclusive and equitable teaching and learning environments.

TfC UW is a collaboration between the Center for Teaching and Learning and Memory War Theater, a Seattle-based theater company devoted to personal and community transformation through performing arts, partnerships and education.

Since 2012, TfC UW has engaged hundreds of audience members in intersectional, critical dialogue on issues such as White Privilege, Racism, Heterosexism, Policed Bodies, Socioeconomic Classism, Ableism, and Microaggressions.

Upcoming courses and events

DRAMA 490F/599C Acting Up: Teaching Theater for Change

Spring quarter: Tuesdays/Thursdays (2:30-4:50) 5 credits

How do you make positive change in classroom and institutional climates so that all of our students thrive? That’s an increasingly urgent question in higher education and beyond. One evidence-based answer: by building practical skills in Theatre of the Oppressed, social change theater, and other arts-based pedagogies. These skills promote inclusive educational environments, whether in a classroom, online, or in community contexts.

In this multidisciplinary course, students practice using the language and methods of theater to challenge institutional oppression and advance community dialogue about power and privilege. This practice generates opportunities for collective problem-solving. The course culminates in a student-generated interactive theater performance and dialogue.

Instructor: Tikka Sears, director, Theater for Change, Center for Teaching and Learning & affiliate faculty, School of Drama

Spring Time Schedule

Interested in learning more about TfC’s work?

Watch the 2019 EduTalks presentation: A Place Called School. Tikka Sears, Elba Moise, Debi Talukdar and Sooz Stahl of UW Theater for Change share their work using interactive theater to identify and interrupt moments of oppression, advance community dialogue and imagine possibilities for positive change in schools.