Research

Wan Smolbag’s Theatre in Vanuatu and the New Zealand Connection

by Susan Battye

This paper was published in Volume 2 of the ejournal: New Zealand Journal of Research in Performing Arts and Education (2010) a joint publication between Drama New Zealand and the University of Canterbury.

Abstract

This paper examines the connection that exists between a Vanuatu based theatre, film and television company called Wan Smolbag and one of its donor countries, New Zealand. The paper begins with an introduction to the company, and relevant economic history of Vanuatu, followed by an examination of the background to the New Zealand connection; in particular, the government’s reason for its involvement. Interviews with company principal, Peter Walker and a New Zealand Volunteer Service Abroad worker, Ana Terry, serve to establish further connections between the two countries, as well as providing an insight into the workings of the company, its range of activities, governance, challenges, perceived opportunities and continued reliance on New Zealand government and non-governmental support for its activities. Find out more here

 

Building Capacity Through Arts Education and Technology: An Interactive CD-ROM Project, Dance and Drama in Uganda, the Pearl of Africa

By Susan Battye and Dr Mercy Mirembe Ntangaare -

World Conference on Arts Education: Building Creative Capacities For the 21st century Lisbon, Portugal, 6-9 March 2006

Abstract

 This paper examines the way in which production of an interactive CD-ROM, Dance and Drama in Uganda: the Pearl of Africa has assisted the building of capacity in the arts in Uganda.

The CD-ROM is the result of a unique three-year collaborative project between Ugandan playwright, researcher, teacher and folklore exponent, Dr Mercy Mirembe Ntangaare andNew Zealandteacher, playwright and researcher, Susan Battye.  It provides many contemporary and historical perspectives on Ugandan dance and drama, and will be of relevance to teachers of arts education internationally.

The collaborative production process involved many cross-cultural challenges for the two authors including: working with academic, non-governmental and government systems, defining the focus of the resource to meet the needs of Ugandan and New Zealand students, finding funds for travel and video production, researching, co-authoring, collating, editing, publishing, distributing and publicising the CD-ROM through an Australian agency.

 Featured items contained in the multi-media CD-ROM include various forms of Dance and Drama inUgandasuch as: cultural dances, folksongs, dance drama, political plays, children’s theatre, puppetry, acrobatics, community theatre, and Theatre for Development projects. Texts of iconic Ugandan plays and articles by many academics and community theatre practitioners from Makerere University’s Music Dance and Drama Department (MDD) provide an insight into the significance of Ugandan theatre in its historical and contemporary post-colonial context. A comprehensive set of focussed learning activities particularly suitable for secondary students is also included in the CD-ROM.

See the whole article here:

 

Once Were Warriors On Stage: Unpacking the CD-Rom

by Susan Battye

This paper was first published in the inaugural ejournal Research in New Zealand Performing Arts- Nga Mahi a Rehia no Aotearoa Volume 1 (2009) A joint publication between Te Wananga o Aotearoa and Drama New Zealand

Abstract

This article reflects on the production of an interactive CD-ROM – Once Were Warriors On Stage, based on the Maori musical drama, Once Were Warriors, which was staged in New Zealand urban theatres during March and April of 2004. Find out more here

 

Bi-cultural Theatre as an Agent for Healing; Theatre Marae in New Zealand/Aotearoa

by Susan Battye

This paper was first published in NJ (Drama Australia Journal)Volume 26 Number 1 2002 and IDEA Journal Volume 2 – A Joint Publication of Drama Australia and IDEA as part of the Selected Papers from IDEA, 2001, the 4th World Congress of Drama / Theatre and Education ‘Playing Betwixt and Between’ held in Bergen, Norway – July 2001.

 Abstract  

This paper analyses the process of creating a piece of Bi-cultural Theatre with young people held in protective care and detention in a Youth Justice Residential Centre in New Zealand. The drama process is perceived as being therapeutic or healing in a post-colonial context in which indigenous Maori people are gaining national recognition of their right to redress for past hurts and wrong doing by the Crown. Maori see the Crown as a ‘partner’ under the terms of a founding document, The Treaty of Waitangi. On a daily basis the Crown now attempts to embrace a bi-cultural and bi-lingual perspective in all social, political and economic matters. (Download the file) Bicultural Theatre Agent for Healing_SB

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