THE COUNTY HOME SCHOOL THEATRE PROJECT is a five-week program that uses playwriting and theatre to educate and transform the lives of incarcerated juvenile offenders who are nearing the final stage of their treatment and are preparing to re-enter the community. Through developmental writing workshops, theatrical production and mentoring relationships the workshop develops creative self-expression, social interaction and discipline. The workshop channels the diverse emotional energies of the participants into structured forms of artistic expression. Check in here over the next few weeks to hear about this year’s project as we head towards our performances August 14 & 15 2pm @Pillsbury House & Theatre
we’ve settled down to a group of seven young men, 6 of whom are determined to make it and the seventh sits on the fence. He has all the tools to make it, but as the youngest, is the most concerned about the opinion of the other residents. When he is focused he is fantastic. He’s a natural leader, on a football team he’d be the quarterback; on the basketball court, a point guard. With that skill set, he’s often standing in the way of his own success. When he doesn’t, his charismatic personality takes the group with him. Also, because he’s the youngest and he’s missed so much school, his writing skills are the weakest. His ideas are often restricted by poor spelling and sentence structure, but his understanding and awareness of the workings of his situation brings a power to his writing that can’t be denied. I’m torn between the difficulty of classroom disturbances and the beauty of his insights.
P.S. Now, we’re going into the next week and the aforementioned young man didn’t make it. His decision was that the workshop just isn’t for him. My heart drops but the show must go on!
Enjoy this sample of one of the kids writing:
trapped in incarcerated placements
I’m feeling anxious
Looking to begin a new start
But found myself beginning to lose heart
Wish to show the world my true art
Need to get my head straight first
Wonder if they can tell I left straight dirt
Remembering Kentrell my body starts to fidget
Seeking Zen and Health
But my body burns with sickness