QuEST has been busy with Theater of the Oppressed Workshops!
The QuEST Project is the polical arm of Out Now, and uses interactive theater to address issues of oppression and ways we can work together to combat them.
In our workshops, we act out real life scenarios of oppression, often from events that happened in our own lives for schools, community groups, conferences and workplaces. After playing out a scene that re-enacts oppressive situations, we ask the audience, or spectactors as they are referred to in Theater of the Oppressed, to talk about what played out, and discuss ways the group thinks someone could have stepped in, spoken up, or offered support in order to stop the oppression, or change the outcome.
Spectactors (the audience) are then asked to join QuEST in replaying the scene using the ideas generated from the group discussion, to shut down the oppressor, or empower the oppressed. We will play these out with a few different outcomes to see what strategies work best until the group feels like we were able to come up with some great solutions.
We consider these scenes as practice for our lives, as many people struggle to step in at critical moments of oppression. The workshop is meant to empower the participants to figure out how we can all support each other as a community, and fight together against social and institutional oppression. We cover many different types of issues, such as the Prison industrial Complex, racism, classism, homophobia, transphobia, sexism, misogyny, ageism, ableism fatphobia, xenophobia, and other topics.
Lately, we have been busy at many local schools and community centers, with more workshops planned through the winter. QuEST loves doing our work outside of the office, reimagining what community really can mean. We learn so much from our Spectactors, and it is a tool that allows us all to create great strategies to fight oppression in our own lives. If you know group, class, or organization interested in QuEST coming to do Theater of the oppressed, email firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’d be glad to come!