A verbatim collaboration

ARTSY: Flinders University Lecturer Dr Sarah Peters will work with D'faces of Youth Arts and Port Augusta group Shock 'n' Awe on a verbatim theatre project.
ARTSY: Flinders University Lecturer Dr Sarah Peters will work with D'faces of Youth Arts and Port Augusta group Shock 'n' Awe on a verbatim theatre project.

An ambitious verbatim theatre project that will see D’faces of Youth Whyalla collaborate with Port Augusta theatre group Shock ‘n’ Awe will kick off with a workshop in Port Augusta in February.

“Allowed to Be” will see the young performers share their stories with one another through interviews with the guidance of Flinders University Lecturer Dr Sarah Peters.

Country Arts SA has contributed a grant of $7,340 to the project, which will explore the pressures and constraints that young people face.

The term ‘verbatim theatre’ refers to recording real life stories and using them as a stimulus for drama performance. 

“The interviews can inform the creation of a plot line which has authenticity because it was inspired by real life experiences,” Dr Peters said.

Dr Peters said that verbatim theatre helps young people improve their listening and interviewing skills by challenging them to source stories from one another.

“I think young people have a great capacity for empathy which they can channel into a project like this – I think they’re going to be fantastic,” she said.

Dr Peters said she was excited to meet the young people from both theatre groups and hear what they want the end performance to be about.

“I’ve done quite a few diverse collaborations with different groups for verbatim theatre and people always get more out of it than what they expect,” she said.

D’faces Company Manager Olivia White said the drama group were ‘excited to be able to combine forces and take the youth artist’s development of verbatim theatre to the next level with expert guidance’.

Workshops will be held on February 5, February 26, March 19 and April 2, with the groups and working on the project separately between those dates.

The project will then culminate in four days of workshops between April 15 and 18.