As a part of the YESPeace programme, a series of workshop “TAMASHA YESPeace Workshop” was conducted in order to develop skills amongst youth to enable them to understand and analyze; facilitate and lead conflict resolution activities; in order to further engage audiences in their home communities. The purpose of these activities were to promote key issues such as peace, conflict resolution, gender equality, cross-cultural understanding and diversity using the powerful medium of theater and performing arts.
The sessions were based on discussions on peace, in which participants highlighted issues which are a challenge to peace. The thought process about “how they can play their role to achieve peace” opened new horizons for the participants. At the end of the workshop they developed three short theatre performances on topics like child abuse, Inequality with transgender community and human trafficking. The responsibility of being a Global Citizen and its significance to us, was also discussed in the workshops.
The programme was organized by The Little Art through its project ‘Tamasha’ in major support by UNESCO Pakistan and MGIEP, however a very small fee was charged from some of the participants to sponsor few deserving participants from other cities belonging to challenged backgrounds. As, The Little Art believes in equal opportunities for all, so it included participants not only from 4 provinces but also from different ethnic, religious, social and economic backgrounds. Tamasha hosted 5 participants from Quetta and took care of all their expenses for the workshop.
Second session of Tamasha YESPeace Workshop was carried out in collaboration with YESPeace partners, College of Youth Activism and Development (CYAAD) and Hive Pakistan. Two workshops were conducted in Islamabad, on conflict resolution and civic imagination. The experience gained from the workshops helped participants to imagine a better world and draft a social action plan to implement in the real world.
The objectives of this program were;
- To understand, examine and resolve conflict at various levels of individual self and society
- To work in a collaborative/artistic ensemble; specifically enhancing skills of listening and managing point of views
- To facilitate youth by having a creative forum where they can explore key issues through theater
- Facilitate activities for peer-to-peer empowerment for positive social change
- Develop vocal, physical and imaginative skills to express
- Introduce Sustainable Development Goals
Date: 31st July – 5th August 2017 (First Session)
Date: 21 – 22 August 2017 (Second Session)
Number of Participants: 35
“First of all, I would like to appreciate all the members of this team, UNESCO Pakistan and MGIEP for their support, YESPeace Pakistan Network and Tamasha who actually executed this wonderful and knowledgeable workshop for commoners like us, who had no knowledge of theatre and performing arts.
Secondly, I would like to share my experience here…. I believe that among all the mentioned objectives of Tamasha YESPeace Workshop, if I consider myself as a single entity, I achieved almost all of them.
- For example, I understood, examined and resolved many conflicts that I had in my mind regarding society and individual self.
- While working in a diversified age group and academic backgrounds, I accomplished to enhance my listening skills and managed to hear out different point of views.
- Undoubtedly, this workshop facilitated youth by different creative activities where we explored different key issues of our society through the presentations and discussions with our trainers.
- This workshop not only facilitated activities for peer-to-peer empowerment for positive social change, but it also developed vocal, physical and imaginative skills to express ourselves and allowed us to convey our feelings and thoughts towards the audience, as a society.”
“It was really a great pleasure working with this organization. It was an informative and interactive workshop. Initially when I signed up for this workshop I thought it will be related to just theatre but over here we didn’t only learn how to perform on the stage in fact how to perform in our life. In this workshop they introduced MGIEP Curriculum and conducted an activity through which helped us to explore our self as human being. We build so much confident that existed within us but we were not able to explore it. We learnt how to communicate without even speaking a word. How to work as a team.”
“The workshop gave me a chance to participate and express myself. It stimulated my thought process and made me realize that creativity can flourish and your ability of self-expression can be developed very easily. Sir Umair and team ‘The Little Art’ managed all sessions really well. I personally recommend to all my fellows to try something really different through which they can bring out their talents!”
“This Tamasha workshop is the first step to move forward. I learned from this workshop more than my expectations and it has also motivated me to start working with my community on performing arts. The sessions of Umair Mushtaq were really amazing as it helped me to build my confidence to come in front of public and to highlight major issues through theater. Secondly sessions of Sir Mobeen, Sir Amir and Sir Shoaib were also based on theaters that how can we use the stage, what is expressions and how can we improve our expressions while performing for theater. Aleena and Anusheh briefly explained about the network of Global Citizenship Education. It was indeed a great initiative for education”.
One of the very crucial parts of the workshop that I came across was the part of Story Building. Not only artists, but we as humans on the very basic level are nothing but story tellers. We were given a short time to build a story, in the form of groups and then with the help of performing on-stage, we conveyed those stories to the audiences, sometimes in direct and sometimes in a subtle way.
The unnecessary limitations we impose on ourselves, in our daily lives were broken. It wasn’t until the third day that all of us, even the shy participants started opening up and were performing in good spirits.
The TAMASHA Workshop, is by far one of the most productive workshops that I have attended. It enabled me to express myself, understand others’ expressions and most importantly it helped me to make my communication more effective.
The trainers were highly skilled they showed us how to manage and solve conflicts. How to not panic when you face a conflict. We also worked over Civic Imagination and how it can be improved by focusing. Moreover, I came to know the importance of Civic Imagination and how it helps structure our societies and communities.
In the end I just want to say, that these workshops gave me hope, that it isn’t impossible to create peace in the society. That there are people out there trying to save the world, trying to make it better, that all is not lost, that Art can be and will be revived. Now, no matter how difficult it is I always remember that I am not alone in trying got do something, there are people already doing it and I can too.
Thank You so much Everyone involved in the process. I can never really thank enough to be honest.
TRAINERS & TEAM
This workshop’s organizer and primary trainer Umair Mushtaq is a theatre practitioner and co-founder of “Tamasha –Activating Youth through Performing Arts”, a theatre project of The Little Art. He got his informal education of performing arts while working with various groups nationally and internationally. He has conducted drama therapy workshops to empower domestically abused women and children from humble backgrounds. With Tamasha, he brings this work to the youth category, aged 16-25.
Zeeshan Naveed (Tamasha, The Little Art)
Umair Mushtaq (Tamasha, The Little Art)
Amir Nawaz (ASSITEJ Pakistan)
Mobeen Ijaz (ASSITEJ Pakistan)
Azeem Hamid (ASSITEJ Pakistan)
Shoaib Iqbal (British Council Pakistan)
CYAAD (College of Youth Activism and Development)
GCED Youth Network (Aleena Khan, Anusheh Bakht)