In February Rachel of the This is Rubbish team was invited to give a presentation and workshop to a group of undergraduate applied theatre studies students at Aberystwyth University. Some of the participatory methods of engagement that This is Rubbish uses are synonymous with applied theatre, especially pop up, public FEASTING.
After a brief TiR history and a run through of relevant events the group of 26 students was split into three and given the task of designing a Feast. Each group was asked to concentrate on 6 key areas, being as creative, inventive and ambitious as possible. These areas were: Food sourcing, Location, Logistics, Messaging, Theatrics, and Equipment.
The workshop resulted in the germination of plans for a medieval banquet to celebrate local food and educate on the plethora of fantastic welsh ingredients we have growing and grazing around the area. Group two plotted a 50’s barn dance to bring together the youth and the elderly. And the third, ‘Celebrate the shape’ a waste space picnic, drawing our attention to all the wildly wonky and weirdly wasteful from a whole plethora of industries.
All in all a really fun and educational afternoon for all, with the students really absorbing how theatre and participatory event design can be used to educated and inspire action on complex and difficult issues…. and I got to go home knowing that apparently what we do is called ‘Applied Theatre’. Who knew?