Racism has no role to play on stage, back stage or off stage in any school, community or nation. The Educational Theatre Association, the International Thespian Society, and the Educational Theatre Foundation speak out with communities of color against hate and prejudice wherever it appears. Our commitment to building a diverse, inclusive, and equitable organization is an ongoing journey involving our staff, board of directors, members, and friends in the theatre and education fields. If you would like to get involved and help make a difference — through involvement in an initiative or simply sharing your experiences from a DEI perspective — please contact us. Please go here to learn more about the steps we are taking.
Where do I begin?
Recent events have brought to the forefront the urgent need for educators everywhere to seek resources on how to address racism and marginalization in the classroom, and many have expressed a need to begin by educating themselves first. A wonderful starting point can be found on the website of the National Art Education Association, "Black Lives Matter; An Open Letter to Art Educators on Constructing an Anti-Racist Agenda". This powerful piece is written by Dr. James Haywood Rolling, Jr., Professor of Arts Education at Syracuse University and President-Elect of the National Art Education Association. Another important work is the Asian American Performer's Action Coalition's study "The Visibility Report - Racial Representation on NYC Stages". For an informative look at anti-racist theatre practices read "We See You White American Theatre" by The Ground We Stand On coalition. Another highly recommended resource is the National Museum of African-American History and Culture’s Talking About Race. And finally, don't miss this article "Celebrating Diversity is Not Enough" by Susan Santone.
For more resources - this list of links originally published by the Arts Education Partnership offers a great beginning:
- Ibram X. Kendi: How to build an antiracist world
- Let's get to the root of racial injustice | Megan Ming Francis | TEDxRainier
- Keynote Address with Shawn Ginwright, Phd : Discusses the role arts educators need to play in the post-COVID-19 world to support reconnection and healing after this time of uncertainty and isolation.
- Putting Racism on the Table video series by the Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers
- What is Systemic Racism? Video Series by Race Forward
- Racial Equity During and After the COVID-19 Pandemic (conversation with Ibram X. Kendi, New York Times bestselling author and founding director of the Antiracist Research and Policy Center at American University).
- Webinar on Abolitionist Teaching in a Global Pandemic featuring Bettina Love
- Cook Ross (DEI Consulting agency) Webinars
Great teaching resources, blogs, professional development, lesson plans and op ed pieces created by people of color may be found on the website Learning for Justice website (formerly Teaching Tolerance).
Looking for plays or other resources to add to your curriculum? Here are some links to help you get started; watch for a more complete list coming soon.
Black Work Broadway tracking plays by people of color on Broadway. Open Source Scripts Toward an Anti-racist Tomorrow by Idris Goodwin. Free for production as long as no admittance fee is charged. The Diversity Production Pro Project Vocational training in the trades and skills required for careers in the Artists, Crafts, and Technicians departments of the entertainment industry in alignment with Assembly Bill 1664 Bocanegra/Calderon Film and Television Workforce Development Program.
Finally, if you are looking for ways to start the conversation with your students; explore social justice theatre. Social justice theatre resources may be found right here on Theatre Educator Pro. Archives of webinars on teaching social justice from 2019 and early 2020 are collected below. Please continue to watch this space as we add links to our Culturally Inclusive Teaching webinars planned for later in the summer of 2020, along with more offerings next season. We hope the live and archived versions of these webinars will make a timely addition to your professional learning.
Theatre Educator Pro Resources
DEI & Culturally Responsive Teaching
Introduction to Equity-Based VocabularyContains 3 Component(s), Includes Certificate Includes a Live Web Event on 07/27/2021 at 4:00 PM (EDT)
An introductory exploration of important vocabulary to help us move towards being anti-racist.
Thriving as an API CreativeContains 2 Component(s), Includes Certificate Recorded On: 05/18/2021
In honor of Asian Pacific Heritage Month, join this panel discussion and conversation.
Exploring Asian American Theatre ArtistryContains 2 Component(s), Includes Certificate
Donatella Galella introduces viewers to a history of Asian Americans, concepts and representations in this webinar highlighting key plays that would work well in the theatre education classroom.
Director's Cut (Curating. Unbiased. Theatre.)Contains 2 Component(s), Includes Certificate Recorded On: 02/25/2021
Theatre arts educators and directors play a pivotal role in establishing an inclusive artistic environment that embraces diversity and is demonstrative of truth in storytelling. This webinar is designed to support participants in evaluating the discriminatory practices and exclusionary behaviors that divide our American stages. The hope is that through guided discussion and assessment, the participants will identify best practices that curate anti-racist theatre that is created for, is a reflection of and is inclusive to all cultures and communities.
Culturally Inclusive Teaching: Creating an Action PlanContains 2 Component(s), Includes Certificate
Identify steps a teacher can take to unpack their own practice and re-think their curriculum and methods.
Theatre for Social Justice
"Stage the Change" - Social Justice Through a Playwriting Based CurriculumContains 2 Component(s), Includes Certificate Recorded On: 12/08/2020
Ruthie Pincus, Executive Director of Stage the Change, will provide a collection of strategies to lead your students to identify their passions and use their arts voices to create work that makes a difference in their community. This work engages students in a personal way and helps to develop them as empathetic engaged global citizens and artists, eventually becoming artists who understand the power of their young "arts voices."
"Stage the Change" - Social Justice Through a Playwriting Based CurriculumContains 2 Component(s), Includes Certificate
In this webinar you will learn strategies to lead your students to use their arts voices to create work that makes a difference in their community and to help to develop them as empathetic engaged global citizens and artists, eventually becoming artists who understand the power of their young "arts voices."
Theatre of the OppressedContains 3 Component(s), Includes Certificate
Learn about Augusto Boal's Theatre of the Oppressed and how to teach it in your classroom.
Bringing Human Rights and Social Justice into the ClassroomContains 3 Component(s), Includes Certificate
Karen S. Watson offers this webinar on theatre for social justice and devising techniques.
Devising as Constructivist Teaching PracticeContains 3 Component(s), Includes Certificate Recorded On: 10/24/2019
Bethany Nelson, Emerson College offers this webinar to address the theory underlying the practice of devising theatre. Length: 60 minutes
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