to the Land
to the First Peoples of Turtle Island
to the courage, to the strength of communities standing tall
to the soil to the water, sun & moon
for all the food we harvest in this season of changing leaves
to each one of you
for Co-CREATING CHANGE
gifting the world with your passion
for Transformation big or small
of all that is to come
sustaining the creativity to wombanifest
all that we believe
Sending Oceans of Gratitude for your ongoing support!
(everyday, not just on one day a year)
As the winds of autumn dance in full swing, we wish you grounding breaths, open hearts and active voices! Especially in the upcoming election–your VOTE for CHANGE makes a difference!!
As the colourful, whimsical leaves gather in abundance, we are grateful for the abundance of exciting, humbling and transformative opportunities we are diving into this fall!
In Toronto (& London):
We were delighted to creatively support the newcomer youth leadership development program at the YMCA in Brampton and lead an Artist Facilitation Training session for the amazing new artists we’ll collaborate with for Tokens4Change this year.
We had the chance to work with the incredible staff at For Youth Initiative to lead a two day intensive arts-based facilitation training.
We had the gift to collaborate with Aisha Haque from Western University’s Teaching Support Centre to co-create and perform a forum theatre play at their recent Perspectives on Teaching Conference. The play raised issues of discrimination and exclusion on campus to motivate professor’s to rehearse how to address and collaboratively transform oppression in their classroom environments. Learnings from the performance were shared in UWO Theatre Professor, Kim Solga’s blog: The Activist Classroom.
Pictured above, Actors: Natalie Abdou, Rehana Tejpar, Naomi Tessler with spect-actor-Kim Solga who stepped into the play to bring change into the classroom through the role of our professor character played by Hartley Jafine. Thanks to our incredible ensemble for making the full forum an incredible learning opportunity for all!
We are honoured to be working with the Advocacy Centre for Tenants Ontario (ACTO) to create and stage a legislative theatre performance entitled “People’s Assembly for the Right to Housing” for National Housing Day on November 20th, at 12:30pm at Holy Trinity Church. This is a free event, and ALL are WELCOME! There will be a rally leading up to the performance. We will share more info on our website once it’s available. We hope you can join us and support this deeply important cause which affects all Canadians.
Thank you to everyone who joined us for our Theatre of the Oppressed Intensive! We’re looking forward to our next Theatre of the Oppressed Games Night coming up this Monday, November 2nd and our next Rainbow of Desire Workshop on December 11th. We hope you can make it! See below for all the details.
We had a passionate group of children and youth ages 6-13 join us for our first ever: Branch Out Theatre Day Camp in Chelsea, Quebec. We spent the week with a balance of nature and social justice–hiking and finding natural props in the forest along with co-creating forum theatre plays addressing gender based violence and family conflicts, which culminated in a community performance for the campers’ family and friends.
We had the chance to work with staff from Ottawa Community Housing to shake up their staff meeting with a workshop on creative play and team building led by guest facilitator extraordinaire-Lucy Lu of Third Space Playback.
Our Stand Up, Speak Theatre Project– a social justice and theatre after school program for LGBTQ+ & Allied youth has started up again this fall in partnership with The Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity (CCGSD) and we look forward to growing our ensemble and performing at upcoming events in Ottawa. See below for more details!
We are thrilled to announce the launch of the Creative Well Theatre Project, in collaboration withMegan Piercey Monafu. This project seeks to provide theatre programming to adults struggling with mental health and culminate in the co-creation and touring of a forum theatre play addressing the social stigma attached to mental illness. See more details below!
Naomi Tessler is delighted to be giving a talk on Arts for Social Change for the Carlton’s Political Science Society Professional Development Day coming up in November.
And… with deep breaths, we are excited to share news about our upcoming performance of: (off) Balance, a heart centred play about finding equilibrium when your world is reduced to a diagnosis. Created and Performed by: Naomi Tessler
Direction and Dramaturgy by: Bronwyn Steinberg.
(off) Balance is being produced November 13th-21st as part of TACTICS at Arts Court Theatre in Ottawa, tickets available here. See the full details and reflection on the devising of (off) Balance below.
We would love nothing more than to keep Branching Out through Theatre with you! If you are interested in inviting Branch Out Theatre to facilitate a workshop or devise an engaging performance with your organization, school, community health centre, workplace, library, youth program, your next event, conference, retreat and more, please get in touch.
Thank you for being a part of the Branch Out Theatre community.
In Peace and Light,
Naomi Tessler, M.A.