TWB Digest

Dear esteemed reader,  we hope so far, your artistic labor continues to bring you joy.
This issue presents 2019 opportunities, events and approaching deadlines.

On the Move has short selection of calls and opportunities with a reference page for deadlines.

Culture 360: ASEF Connecting Asia and Europethroughout arts invites willing collaborators, apply to the Magic Oxygen Literary Prize (Deadline December  31st, 2018) and An Artist Residency in Motherhood (open deadline) and more opportunities here.

If you were following the African Dream campaign for the outstanding 3 African Pepites, click on thislink and find out The talented Africans who won.

Women in the Arts and Media Coalition 
Project Submissions
Script Submissions
Other Resources
Check out this Funding Resources pages!

Words without Borderscovers Afro-Brazilian writing

You are invited to the Syrian Film Program at Queens University
December 16- January 19, 2019.

The Magdalena Project 

Global Participatory Project Climate Change Theatre Action Returns In 2019 Time for action! After two successful years, Climate Change Theatre Action (CCTA) is back, bringing together a diverse community of artists and audiences to foster sustainable change on a local and global scale. CCTA 2019 is a collaboration between The Arctic Cycle, the Center for Sustainable Practice in the Arts, and Theatre Without Borders.
In January, 50 playwrights representing every continent as well as several Indigenous nations, will be commissioned to write five-minute plays highlighting the work of our various climate heroes, under the theme “Lighting the Way.” In April, the resulting collection of plays will be freely available to international producing collaborators who will be invited to present an event in their community from September 15 – December 20, 2019, using one or several plays from the collection.
To be the first to hear about the Call for Collaborators, sign up for The Arctic Cycle’s mailing list.


Studios Kabako Wins 2014 Curry Stone Design Prize! Kisangani, Congo.

Studios Kabako Wins 2014 Curry Stone Design Prize! Kisangani, Congo.


“Culture is one of the most powerful means of providing a shelter for a community.

That shelter doesn’t have to be a concrete roof.”

Suad Amiry, founder of RIWAQ, winner of the CSDP award in 2012


The Studios Kabako and Faustin Linyekula are very honoured to have received the CurryStone Design Prize 2014 for the work they have been developping for many years in Kisangani, North East of Congo, and the use of culture as a tool to socially and politically address a urban territory and its communities.


View the film on the Studios Kabako work, produced by the CSDP


The prize will enable the Studios Kabako to pursue in the coming months the work they have initiated in Lubunga around drinking water. In 2015 will be implemented a first water treatment pilote unit, as well as a neighbourhood cultural centre around sound and image for Lubunga communities.

CurryStone Design Prize was founded in 2008 by Clifford Curry and Delight Stone to recognize designers who address urgent social issues. It was established with the belief that design can be a critical force to create positive social transformations and empower local communities.

Prize Director: Emiliano Gandolfi, architect and curator, co-founder of Cohabitation Strategies, Rotterdam.

Jury: Suad Amiry, Clifford Curry, Gary Feuerstein, Louisa Silva, Delight Stone, John Thackara, Antonio Scarponi.

A warm thank you to Peter Sellars for his unfailing support, Delight Stone, Cliff Curry and Emiliano Gandolfi for the trust placed in us, jury's members, Donna Read, Gaël Teicher, Jan Goossens, Bärbel Müller, Stéfanie Theuretzbacher and members of Applied Foreign Affairs, the Studios Kabako team as well as associated artists.



Support Writing about Theatre and Reconciliation in Conflict Zones (Democratic Republic of Congo)

Support Writing about Theatre and Reconciliation in Conflict Zones (Democratic Republic of Congo)

With its theater organization & Reconciliation, theater director Frédérique Lecomte Belgian scene has been pursuing a very important work in conflict areas, mainly in Burundi and Congo. 

She creates and puts on shows with former child soldiers, prisoners and victims of torture, women victims of violence; of vulnerable people trying to survive in very precarious conditions. By giving them a voice so they can express their trauma but also their deepest aspirations, it allows them to rebuild in the dignity of self, respect for others and a glimpse of the future. 

For over ten years, Frédérique Lecomte has built over its projects, a method dedicated to the empowerment of participants through the practice of a theater that is both intense and moving; a theater truly transformative both for those who play for the thousands of spectators who attend the performances. 

This method, she tried to formalize, to share it with other artists. She designed a book that is both a practical guide that can be used as a benchmark for other theatrical experiences in conflict zones and an account of his own journey into the painful history of Central Africa. 

This is a unique and original book, which will be an important contribution to the understanding of what art in general and theater in particular, can lead to the reconstruction of souls in post-war countries. 

The book offers: 

– Two stories Frédérique Lecomte on experiments conducted in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Burundi, 

– A work report of the director Ewout D'Hoore, who accompanied one of the creations, 

– Tests of contextualization on building peace in the Great Lakes region and in the theater of operation (by Marie-Soleil Frère and Karel Van Haesebrouck, both professors at the Free University of Brussels) 

– A series of striking photographs taken throughout the work of Frédérique Lecomte in Central Africa, by Véronique Vercheval Géminel and Benjamin, 

– An original outline of the method invented and developed by Theatre and Reconciliation that can own all those who wish to emulate it. 

However, implementing such a book is expensive … The publisher is committed to prepare and disseminate it can not balance its budget production without your help … 


We are asking for your participation and generosity through the site Kisskissbankbank.


 By clicking this link, you will find a presentation of this book and visuals that will allow you to take the measure of the ambition and enthusiasm that carries such a project. 

 Your contributions are essential if this book can emerge … 

What do we offer you in return? 

– Tempting as you discover the site counterparties; 

– Pleasure to make your small contribution to an ambitious undertaking mobilization theater practice to heal the wounds of the souls of people weakened by conflict; 

– As well as the gratitude of all those former child soldiers in South Kivu prisoners or victims of torture in Burundi, found in the work done with Frédérique Lecomte a door to the future. 

Make this book a reality and that this unique project is known to the majority.

With our warmest thanks. 

Frédérique Lecomte

The Outer Limits – Research outside the comfort zone – Theatre of war – James Thompson article in Times Higher Education

In Place of War project

People take refuge in drama when the bombs rain down, and the arts aid rebuilding when the guns fall silent, says James Thompson, who has travelled to some of the world's most violent regions, only for the horrors of conflict to be felt closer to home

Journeys have defined my experience of conflict zones more than tales of bombs and fighting. Travelling across a country usually tells you as much about the deprivations of war as any history of violence. The distance between Uvira, South Kivu, in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the high-plateau village of Minembwe is only 150km – but in the dry season in June or July it is a stomach-churning 11-hour drive. In the wet season the path is impassable – so the locals walk. Westerners can get passage on a United Nations helicopter if they are lucky (I have never been). I have made this journey by road twice in the past three years. My enduring memories are of the ingenuity of the driver, Musore Ruturutsa, as he steered over impossible holes or improbable bridges; of the steady commentary from Eraste Rwatangabo as he guided us through the varying terrain; discussions with Pastor Antoine Munyiginya about upcoming theatre workshops; and the resourcefulness of Bahati Kimanuka, the driver's assistant, who dug us out of the mud and directed us through rivers.

The Minembwe journeys are my most recent experience of war-zone travel: my first was a land and sea voyage in Sri Lanka between Colombo and the Northern Province capital Jaffna in 2000. The occupation of the area to the south of Jaffna by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam forced my party to take a circuitous route. We drove across the country to the eastern port of Trincomalee, boarded a Red Cross hospital ship (no cruise liner) for the 22-hour journey into international waters and around the island, and then docked in the naval base at the island's tip. I remember the karaoke with the Malay crew in the ship's tiny hold and watching returning cancer patients and young amputees clinging to the deck, stricken with seasickness.

The In Place of War project was born during that visit to Jaffna. I was the guest of the United Nations Children's Fund. Its Children Affected by Armed Conflict Unit had received a request from community workers in the city for someone experienced in developing theatre programmes for young people. Before the visit, I searched out literature on Sri Lankan theatre and found one book, which boldly stated that because of the war there was no theatre in the North. Having arrived in the capital of the region, I discovered how wrong that claim was. There was a theatre department in the local university as well as a major cultural organisation in the centre of the city, plus an impressive children's theatre movement. This was the product of theatre directors who had relocated to the schools: curfews meant that rehearsals could continue only in daytime settings, so the best theatre practitioners were working with primary school children.

I spent my time there training a large group of enthusiastic and dedicated activists, artists and non-governmental organisation workers in participatory theatre – a form where groups create performances that debate issues of relevance to their lives, and audience members are encouraged to comment upon or intervene in the action. I jumped each time a shell thudded in the near distance during a workshop and realised how wrong the writer of the theatre book had been. And it was from here that the two main questions that steered the In Place of War research project emerged: why in war zones do people continue to make theatre, and why do academics assume that they do not?

These questions led to a major Arts and Humanities Research Council grant for 2004-07 documenting theatre and performance programmes in war zones internationally. This was followed by another project, supported by the Leverhulme Trust, running seminars for war-zone artists. And finally the current stage, funded aga
in by the AHRC, developing an online platform where war- and disaster-zone artists can save and share their work.

This project has taken me and my colleagues to war zones internationally, from Gaza to Northern Ireland, from Bosnia to Banda Aceh, Indonesia. We have also brought artists to the University of Manchester to share work from Burundi, Colombia, the Congo, Kosovo, Nepal, Northern Ireland, Palestine, Rwanda, Sierra Leone and Sri Lanka. We have learned that the assumption that the arts have no place in war misrepresents the daily reality of conflict and also fails to reflect how communities seek to resist the worst, or celebrate despite their situation. Academics take this position because they assume that joy is forbidden once the first bullet has been fired and that the arts themselves do not play a part in the competing rhetoric of making war. They are wrong: someone, after all, has to sing on those endless journeys.

Theatre programmes in war zones are diverse and change subtly depending on how close they are to the violence. At the moment the bombs start falling, they tend to focus on protecting children from the situation around them. During the Israeli bombing of Beirut in 2006, for example, a Palestinian theatre director created a project in a local theatre that was being used to house displaced people. The project, titled Laughter Under the Bombs, is one of the best examples I have encountered of the protective role that the arts can play for people in extreme circumstances. It included daily workshops for children and ended with packed public performances (during which the back doors of the theatre occasionally blew open from the pressure of nearby explosions).

As the violence subsides, the potential for movement allows people to start to rebuild, both physically and culturally. When the Sri Lankan government and Tamil Tiger guerrilla leaders signed a ceasefire in February 2002, activists in Batticaloa, a city in the east of the country, began to support local villagers' desire to re-establish the dance drama kooththu. On a visit that year, I watched newly formed dance clubs practising in sandy yards, ensuring that the steps remembered by elders were passed on to young people. Slowly, excerpts of the Hindu epics the Ramayana and Mahabharata were prepared for previously prohibited all-night performances. The tales of war contained within them provided an unacknowledged commentary on the situation, balanced precariously between war and peace.

In Kosovo, in a similarly fragile postwar period in late 1999, the UN Office on Missing People and Forensics was struggling to return disinterred bodies to their families. People were refusing to give blood as a means of identification, preferring instead to believe the rumours that their loved ones were alive and being held in secret prisons. The agency commissioned the Centre for Children's Theatre and Development, a theatre organisation based in the capital, to create a travelling play that would present the dilemmas faced by families. Postwar divisions made a bilingual cross-community play impossible, so instead the centre staged two parallel projects – one in Albanian and one in Serbian – which toured missing people's associations, encouraging more open debate about the importance of reclaiming the dead.

One of the important principles of In Place of War is that "place" is both specific and ubiquitous. Clearly, Sri Lanka children's theatre is not Palestinian children's theatre; theatre and reconciliation in Sierra Leone is not theatre and reconciliation in Northern Ireland. But by understanding the place of war to be ubiquitous, we sought to find it in our locality. This led to projects with Manchester refugees and weekly drama workshops undertaken at the city's office of the Medical Foundation for the Care of Victims of Torture (now called Freedom from Torture). In the eastern Congo, we documented participatory theatre with returning refugees displaced by the continuing bloody conflict in the country, but we also worked with survivors of that conflict in the centre of our own city.

Our work in the eastern Congo started with a visit in 2006 to a theatre team run by an international peace-building NGO, Search for Common Ground, as it created interactive street performances about the conflicts between refugees returning to the Congo from Tanzania across Lake Tanganyika, and those who had remained in the province of South Kivu. Tens of thousands had fled across the lake during the worst years of the war in the late 1990s, and in the early 2000s they started to return.

More recently, I have been collaborating with a charity called Children in Crisis (CiC), which works with Eben-Ezer Ministry International (EMI, a local NGO) to support teacher training and girls' rights programmes in the inaccessible high plateau area above Lake Tanganyika, which is largely populated by the Banyamulenge community. The Banyamulenge have lived in the region since the 19th century and are connected to the Tutsis in Rwanda. Their mistreatment under the Congo's former dictator Mobutu Sese Seko and involvement in the Congo wars, often as a proxy for Rwandan interests, means they have suffered a huge amount, and have been vilified as "foreigners" or "Rwandans" by those who claim a greater degree of indigeneity. The Banyamulenge continue to be caught between local suspicions, Rwandan politicking and the patterns of racism and fear.

The CiC project has sought to overcome lack of investment in the region and to start to build schools and train teachers. During my first visit to the high plateau, after the 11-hour drive, I witnessed some of the performances, worked with a group of war widows to create a short performance, and ran some school workshops. Theatre programmes in schools can provide a practical way to debate issues raised in the curriculum and can encourage young people to participate in discussions about important social issues. My second visit, in June 2011, involved training for community workers and creating small plays on the struggles of girls to get equal access to education. In communities where there are poor levels of literacy, theatre can provide an accessible means of presenting information and encouraging dialogue.

I make no claim as to the particular innovations of my contribution, but I felt privileged to have an opportunity to work in this remote community. On the high plateau, the devastation of war, coupled with the lack of electricity, running water, mobile signal or roads, was met with inspirational dedication from members of EMI and participants, who walked for between three and four hours to attend each workshop.

In October that year, however, I received a phone call from the London office of CiC. The team had once again been driving from Uvira to Minembwe, the journey I had taken with them, on their way to lead a one-month training programme for teachers, but this time they had been attacked en route by a militia group. Three of the 13 people in the vehicle were released because they were not Banyamulenge, allowing the driver-assistant Bahati – whose name means "chance" in Swahili – to escape. Seven others were killed by gun or machete. The driver, Musore, died inside the vehicle as it was shot at during the attack. Several others were taken away and killed in a nearby village. The project's education manager, Eraste, was shot during the opening attack, and so was Antoine, who had a bullet pass through his elbow as it rested on the passenger window. Outside the vehicle, he was ordered to lie face down on the ground – but for some reason the person ordered to shoot him missed his head.

Eraste and two other injured colleagues were left for dead by the side of the vehicle. Antoine hid in the bush. He heard the armed men return a few hours later. When they discovered that some of Antoine's fellow passengers were not yet dead, they finished off his friends with their machetes. All who died were Banyamulenge: four staff members of the CiC and EMI project, one board member of EMI, the young sister of EMI's cook and Musore's father-in-law.

Antoine stayed in the bush all night. In the morning he staggered back down the road until he was eventually found by an army lorry and driven to the hospital in the nearest town.

I returned to the Congo for the memorial with UK-based CiC colleagues a few weeks later. We visited the families and the widows, and attended a painful church service. We also saw Antoine in hospital – and it was from this moment that the place of war started to become more personal. The hospital had no specialist who could operate on his shattered elbow. The discussion was about expensive trips to either South Africa or India to save his arm. On my return to Manchester, I made a call to my colleague at the university's Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute, Anthony Redmond, a specialist in disaster zone surgery, and asked him if he knew of any possibilities in the city. Within 48 hours he had found a surgeon at the Alexandra Hospital in Manchester who was willing to operate for free.

So that November, Antoine arrived at my family home in Chorlton, Manchester. He left the following May. For just over six months my house became a recuperation centre for a theatre worker colleague from a war zone. I went to work as normal at the university and, initially, spent evenings in hospital, occasionally dressing wounds, often sharing food and watching lots of football.

When he was discharged, a community of friends and family took turns to accompany him to hospital appointments and physiotherapy sessions, go for walks with him, cook for him and simply spend time with him. We went to church together: Antoine spent Christmas and Hanukkah with my family; we watched Manchester City together.

I am writing this article from the Congo, on my first return visit since that terrible event in autumn 2011. I am here, nominally, to work with the reformed team: the project has a new director and new trainers. For me, though, the real opportunity has been to see our colleagues' widows and families again and, of course, Antoine. I have been able to hear how his "British Arm", as they now call it, is faring, and share stories of our journeys around Manchester. Antoine has made it clear that he can never again take the road to Minembwe. The burned-out vehicle, which now sits in the EMI office compound in Uvira, is a terrible memorial to the reason why. I doubt that I, too, will be able to go to the high plateau again because the dangers of the route persist and in many ways I no longer wish to travel in war zones. Journeys once remembered as arduous but delightful now have unhappier memories graphically layered over them. In spectacular fashion, my work came home with me – in caring for Antoine and in seeing up close how a bullet can cause such untold suffering. I now know more concretely than ever that the war zone is, sadly, ubiquitous: no mythic voyage is needed to find it.

Postscript :

James Thompson is professor of applied and social theatre and associate dean for external relations in the Faculty of Humanities at the University of Manchester. His latest book, Humanitarian Performance, will be published in July. The In Place of War project won a Times Higher Education award in 2010.

MAPP International Productions News: Seeking Truth in the theater, studio, community and world

mapp logo


Abbey Lincoln Walter Carter
 in the theater

in the theater october 10
Having one incredible work on tour is exciting – having two at once is exhilarating! A brief sample of the reactions filling our email inbox:

About Yasuko Yokoshi's Tyler Tyler

Your piece, built from your carefully crafted but wonderfully wild choreographic choices, reminded me that art exists (as the novelist Milan Kundera said) 'to preserve the ambiguities'. – South Hadley, MA


I was perfectly happy just letting my brain sink into this meditative wonderland where Eastern and Western sensibilities are clearly at odds but also have their similarities…may be the most fascinating thing I've seen all year. – Houston, TX


 I frequently wondered what cultural cues or layers of traditions I was missing but in the end, I decided to let go and absorb it as dance in and of itself. I appreciated the willingness of the choreographer and dancers to mutually cross over the cultural divide. We need more of that in our world. – Amherst, MA

And Ralph Lemon's How Can You Stay In The House All Day And Not Go Anywhere?

I moved from elated to devastated to thoughtful to energized to exhausted to silly to overwhelmed and on and on…. As a dancer and as a human being, I am so grateful and inspired and heartbroken and enriched by what you shared with us. – San Francisco, CA
I still haven't quite exited the work, such was its exquisite power. Kudos for co-creating such a special experience in this noisy world. – Brooklyn, NY
[The dancers] "play" themselves, in front of us, and ask us to feel what we feel, as we contemplate what they feel, how their bodies move, what sounds they make. If we are uncomfortab
le, uneasy, sad, they ask us to notice those feelings rather than run away from them. This alone makes
How Can You Stay an all too rare cultural work.  – St. Paul, MN

in the studio

in the studio oct 10
Dean Moss and collaborators recently offered new glimpses of Nameless forest in showings at The Kitchen (NYC) and at Arizona State University (Tempe). Each viewing sparked a rich back-and-forth between artists and audience, helping Dean and company break through to new thinking about the piece. Next month, they'll be at Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography (Tallahassee), editing and refining the production.

Residencies like these – which provide time, space and equipment – are essential to the artists' creative process on complex projects like Nameless forest. They also give the public a chance to directly experience that process. A shout out to our partners in these residencies, which reflect the producer-artist-presenter collaboration at its most fruitful.

Embarking on her new project, MIRIAM, Nora Chipaumire is driven by concerns that are artistic, personal, sociological and historical – what particular challenges must an African woman negotiate to have a full creative life? She's pursuing this question as she researches the life and work of South African artist and activist Miriam Makeba, and mines her own history:

Being a dance artist is not the narrative I could have dreamt for myself as a young girl in Harare (Zimbabwe).
Dance has allowed me to accept the "chip on my shoulder" (as the poor African girl). The choice between Family and Dance continues to give me deep opportunities for self-discovery and disclosure, and a method through which to proclaim my freedom: that is, like Miriam Makeba, the capacity to envision, and to start, something new.

in the community

Hundreds of people came out for the "WeDaPeoples" Cabaret at Harlem Stage (in NYC) in September, a lively evening of music, dance, poetry, and video supported by MAPP's America Project. "WeDaPeoples" was first created by Sekou Sundiata as a chance to mix art and activism – to "dance to the revolution." Poet Carl Hancock Rux curated an evening of electrifying performances – with Toshi Reagon, Queen Esther, Helga Davis, and Greg Tate to name just a few – to inspire hope in the face of challenging times, and ignite a passion for action and change.

Cathy recently spoke on a panel at the Theater Without Borders conference in NYC. Her impressions:

I was humbled by the invitation to participate in "Acting Together on the World Stage: A Conference on Theatre and Peace Building in Conflict Zones." The event was a monumental achievement, bringing together more than 300 people, with artists and arts practitioners from over 30 countries, many who take life and death risks for their art as they navigate governments, bureaucracies, and armies in their efforts to make positive world change. I was struck by the no-holds barred honesty that characterized the conversations and the presentations, as together we imagined pathways to peace through art practice.

And, don't miss David Soll's new film, Puppet, which follows MAPP artist Dan Hurlin in the creation of his award-winning show, Disfarmer. Catch the world premiere at DOC NYC in early November.

in the world

in the world 10

 Cathy and Ann head to Nairobi, Kenya, for the Building Equitable Partnerships meeting organized by The Africa Contemporary Arts Consortium and hosted by the GoDown Arts Centre. Consortium members and GoDown leaders will be joined by artists – Panaibra Gabriel and Maria Helena Pinto from Mozambique; Faustin Linyekula from Democratic Republic of Congo (that's part of the arts complex he's building in the picture above!); Boyzie Cekwana from South Africa; and Opiyo Okach from Nairobi – to conceive a possible program of long-term, multi-directional cultural exchange.

Emily goes to Bamako, Mali at the end of October, to attend the biennial Danse l'Afrique Danse Festival. Look for her report in our next newsletter.


in suite 502

MAPP's first benefit was a great success! Organized by our super Board member David Gibson and hosted by David's partner at TWO TWELVE, Ann Harakawa, the evening was a warm celebration of MAPP's long, productive relationship with Ralph Lemon and Cross Performance. Many thanks to our Board and Benefit Committee members, and to all the friends – old and new – who joined us.

New season, new intern! MAPP welcomes Maegan Keller, who immediately got her feet wet working at the benefit. Denisa Musilova, a wonderful intern who has been with us since the spring, is sadly (for us) moving on, and we wish her well.

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Photo credits: Ralph Lemon; Julie Alexander and Kayvon Pourazar in Tyler Tyler by Alexandra Corrazza; Gesel Mason and David Thomson by Antoine Tempé; Nameless forest by Tim Trumble; WeDaPeoples Cabaret by Vaughn Browne; Les Studios Kabako, Democratic Republic of Congo by Faustin Linyekula.