A contest. A community.
A call to action.
For 50 years, World Theatre Day has been celebrating the power of theatre to strengthen cultural exchange and mutual understanding across borders. What began with UNESCO and the six founding centers of the International Theatre Institute (ITI) has grown into an international network of over 100 countries and thousands of artists. For World Theatre Day 2012, Theatre Communications Group, home to the US Center of ITI, wants to hear from the generation of theatre-makers that will bring this legacy forward into the next 50 years.
This is a generation that finds itself at a hinge point in history: never before has communication across borders been so easy. The local is increasingly global, with the consequences of political, environmental and economic actions reverberating across state lines. The essential human impulse of creative expression is finding new means of support and connection in the face of old systems of repression and control.
Finding ourselves at this hinge point, we ask: could this next generation of theatre-makers be a Generation Without Borders? What role can theatre play in replacing old divisions with a vibrant interdependence?
To explore these questions, we’re holding an essay contest for this Generation Without Borders. Theatre-makers younger than 30 or currently enrolled in an educational institution or training program are invited to submit an essay less than 500 words responding to one or more of the following questions:
- What does Generation Without Borders mean to you as a theatre-maker?
- What borders will your generation of theatre artists transcend or transform, and what kind of work is necessary to create such change?
- 50 years from now, when we look back at what this generation has accomplished, what will we say?
Generation Without Borders is more than just a contest; it is also a call to action.
As John F. Kennedy said in the speech that launched the Peace Corps, “The generation which I speak for has seen enough of warmongers. Let our great role in history be that of peacemakers.”
We want to hear about the generation you speak for – what will be the great role in history for the theatre-makers of the Generation Without Borders?
In response to the questions above, please create a document for your essay using a font no smaller than 11-point. Please include your name, contact information (street address, email), date of birth, university or training program affiliation (if applicable) and a brief bio of no more than 200 words with your submission.
Submission files should be saved as LastName_FirstName and sent to email@example.com with the subject headline ‘WTD Essay Competition.’ Please do not fax or mail your essays; handwritten materials will not be accepted. Essay contest and prize winners will be notified by email.
An international panel of artistic and cultural leaders will review the essays and select several that best resonate with TCG’s core value of Global Citizenship and the themes of Generation Without Borders. Those selected will be shared on TCG’s website, and some will be published in American Theatre magazine. Additional prizes will be awarded to randomly selected entries and participants will be invited into an online working group to further the conversations provoked by the essays. All essays must be received by March 9, 2012 to be considered; winners will be notified by March 15, 2012.