Mixed Company Theatre presents a New Community Arts Project that reconnects Youth and Older Adults in Toronto’s diverse communities, INTERGEN.
With the support of the Ontario Trillium Foundation, MCT will bridge the gap between Older Adults and Youth who live in culturally diverse Toronto neighbourhoods including – Weston/Mount Dennis, Humber Valley and Alexandra Park near Chinatown. Designed to increase understanding between older people and teenagers, the project seeks to break down intercultural and intergenerational barriers by sensitizing both groups to the issues, realities, and concerns they have in common as well as those which potentially cause conflict. This project encourages social inclusion, volunteerism and community engagement
This three year project will collaborate with UrbanArts, Heritage York Members at Historical Lambton House and Scadding Court Community Center. Through interactive workshops with participants both young and old we will create theatrical scenes depicting people’s realities, concerns and their generational issues. In the forum theatre tradition, these scenes will be presented for and by its communities to spark important discussions and generate ideas for positive change.
In the third and final year, MCT’s Associate Artists, Project Participants, Mentors, and Community Partners will collect the interactive workshop material to produce 2 Forum Theatre Productions. We will weave together our stories, cultural, and personal discoveries throughout this creative process. The interactive performance showcasing Toronto’s Inter-Generational realities will be performed for the public in a Toronto venue. Stay tuned for more details!
Closing of Spring Moon
Spring Moon is a production that was a milestone of our InterGEN Project . This was the result of an exploration of Chinese intergenerational relationships in Toronto and featured community performers and emerging artists from across the GTA. The show was created with the input of Chinese youth and seniors from Eastview Community Centre, Scadding Court Community Centre, Broadview Manor, The Phoenix Arts Academy, the Markham youth and Toronto Community Housing.
Based on the real-life experiences of the Toronto Chinese community, Spring Moon tells the story of a resilient immigrant peoples through the eyes of three Chinese grandmothers who survived hardship and crossed oceans to give their granddaughters a better life. Although separated by differences of language, culture, and distance, the unconditional love that exists between grandmothers and their granddaughters is a connection that cannot be broken. Spring Moon reveals to us that to find out who we are, we will have to understand where we come from.
Spring Moon was performed through 5 shows at the The Citadel in Toronto ON and was presented in Cantonese, Mandarin, English, and French with Chinese and English surtitles.
After almost a year of workshops, readings and rehearsals, the 3 seniors had never been on stage before, and who played the role of the 3 Chinese grandmothers, asked us “When do we get to do this again?” This, by far, was the biggest moment of the entire project for Mixed Company Theatre! We hope to bring Spring Moon to you soon again!
Closing of Shelf Life, our first InterGEN production
Mixed Company Theatre presented its first production of the ongoing InterGEN Project entitled Shelf Life, written by Luciano Iogna and directed by Simon Malbogat. This premiere play explored the intergenerational gap and was inspired by workshops held with residents living in Toronto’s neighbourhood of Weston / Mount Dennis, in association with Lambton House and Urban Arts Toronto.
Shelf Life was presented at the Tarragon Theatre Extraspace, Nov 30 – Dec 4, 2016.
For more, check out CBC’s coverage of the show.
Script Development Workshops & Public Play Reading
With the support of the Trillium Foundation, MCT’s is entering its final year in our a three year Inter-GEN program. Continuing our work within two separate communities at Lambton House and Urban Arts in Weston/Mount Dennis, and Scadding Court Community Center in Alexandra Park/Chinatown, we hosted a series of in-depth workshops with teens and seniors to create two full length productions.
Recently our playwrights Luciano Iogna and Diana Tso took their inspiration from the workshops to create the first drafts of these community plays and presented them in-house at MCT through two separate readings. Readings included members from each community as well as our project leaders. The playwrights took the feedback and are now finalizing their pieces.
MCT has been collaborating with seniors groups from Broadview Manor, and from Francis Beavis Manor in collaboration with Eastview Neighbourhood Community Centre. We’ve been using various artistic mediums to prompt the sharing of intergenerational stories, including theatre games, spatial awareness and mirroring exercises, dance, drawing, and sculpting, as well as one-on-one discussion with participants, exploring the differences and similarities between their childhood experiences, compared to those of later generations.
InterGEN Workshop at UrbanArts
Thanks to everyone who came out to our most recent workshop and shared their stories! We look forward to further developing our InterGEN play, which will be performed in December of 2016!
Theory of Change Workshop
We created visual representations of the changes we wish to make in our communities, which has helped us focus on the issues that are most important to us, and find new and better ways of achieving these goals.
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