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Extra resources for Theatre and Empowerment: Community Drama on the World Stage
23. From the interviews with members of Ballyoran Training and Support Group. 24. Egan, letter. 25. Ibid. 26. Maureen Harkins, telephone interview conducted by the present writer in February 2002 as part of the research for this essay. 32 3 The Poor Theatre of Monticchiello, Italy r i c h a r d a n d r ew s Let us take, as an example, an evening in July 1995. The theatre is a small central square in a Tuscan village, with a bank of raked seats holding around two hundred spectators. The scenery, for the most part, is just the houses which happen to front the square, including one with a small balcony garden with a mixture of herbs and decorative bushes: together with various alleyways, it will be exploited for entrances and exits.
It was as if a dam had burst. Jo McDowall describes an exercise we used in this period, which was focused on the worst kind of sectarian abuse people could think of or had themselves experienced: ‘It wasn’t embarrassing, but it was really scary. To hear what they were saying as well – it was like, is that what they really think of us? . ’ I went to the pub after the first joint workshop with some of the very experienced community theatre group members; I wanted to check things out with them. I share Richard Schechner’s belief that ‘[s]ecurity is needed at the outset of play more than later on .
Hugh Linehan, Irish Times, 10 November 1999, p. 12. 12. Ian Shuttleworth, Financial Times, 9 November 1999, p. 24. 13. Mic Moroney, Guardian, 10 November 1999, p. 17. 14. Mackin, unpublished independent evaluation, extracts from audience questionnaires. 15. Linehan, Irish Times. 16. Richard Schechner, Performance Theory (London: Routledge, 1988), p. 39. 31 gerri moriarty 17. Quotations are taken from interviews undertaken by the present writer in 2002 as part of the research for this essay with members of Ballyoran Training and Support Group, who attended a community preview.