Voices and Visions for Children is an introductory one-quarter program designed to creatively integrate children’s literature, performance, and arts management. Despite the best efforts of authors over the past thirty years, children’s literature remains primarily focused on the values and lives of white middle class America. This program will highlight less visible children’s literature, particularly, African American, Asian American, Latino/Chicano/Hispanic, American Indian, and Gay and Lesbian. This program is an opportunity to bring both voices and visions to the performance stage through the investigation of the social and political issues that such literature embodies.
Students will use reader’s theatre and other theater techniques to make the children’s literature performative. Students will also learn about arts management as a means of supporting children’s performance. Through lectures, seminars, reading and analysis, films, writing and performance workshops, as well as a field trip to the Seattle Children’s Theatre, students will integrate their new-found knowledge and observations by writing, illustrating, and performing adaptations of children’s literature.
Workshops will also include the study of theatre games, acting, directing, design, playwriting, and puppet and shadow theatre. Students of all levels of talent are welcome, but students must possess a strong interest in reading, writing, and performance. Those who are interested in working backstage are of course most welcome. The Spring quarter will conclude with celebratory final group performances of adaptations of children’s literature.