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Approaching WWI by means of theatre

Can you approach the First World War by means of theatre? Yes, you can, say members of the German improvisational theatre group ‘hidden shakespeare’. They are offering a workshop during the HistoryCampus Europe 14/14 in Berlin in May called “Express yourself! Looking at war from a theatrical angle”. Sixteen young people from eight different countries signed up for the workshop. They will explore the theatrical means of expression of body and voice.

You may wonder why one would approach the subject of war by means of improvisational theatre. Especially since improvisation is the opposite of war itself. “Improvisational theatre”, says Mignon Remé, co-founder of ‘hidden shakespeare’, “is about cooperation rather than competition, about communication rather than confrontation.” Through theatre, participants will approach the subject of WWI in a very hands on-manner, involving all their senses rather than just working with written words.“

Sara Sepic from Bosnia and Olivia Wagner from Germany are excited to participate in this workshop. Sara loves history and theatre. “I see this workshop as a way to combine two different aspects of life (theatre and history) and create something new.” Olivia especially likes improvisational theatre. She enjoys being spontaneous and imaginative. “I expect to see different situations come up connected with the war years: some funny, some very emotional and thought-provoking, and hope to learn a lot.”

“There will be room for all kinds of ideas – sound, images, scenes, etc.”, says Mignon Remé. “The young people will be surprised at the means of expression they have at their disposal!”