It’s official! We have purchased our round-trip plane tickets from NYC to Tel Aviv!
We leave Friday November 23rd (yes, the day after Thanksgiving, leftovers will be fabulous plane fare), and we are so excited! We’ve been holding workshops to hone our teaching lesson plans and devised theatre skills. We’ve been sending material to the students in Ramallah, and they’ve been helping us with Arabic translations. Everyone in Palestine is just as excited as we are and sends their heart-felt thank you’s to everyone here in the states.
We, too, send out big thank you’s to everyone who has helped this project make it to where it is now. We could not have done it without you.
There are still a few days left in our campaign. If you can, please consider giving. We are still raising funds for day-to-day artist expenses while in Palestine, pre-production costs for the documentary, and we would REALLY like to pay everyone who has been involved on this spectacular team for their passion, time and energy.
And as always, sharing our campaign link, Tweeting, Facebooking, and just talking about us to everyone you can goes miles to helping!!
Sarah, Jensen, Lena
Our workshop/travel dates have changed! The Academy has asked us to push back our dates because, as it turns out, the students are not actually going to be available for our original dates. Our new official and confirmed dates are November 25 - December 6 with public performances on December 6 & 7.
But no worries! It just means we have bought ourselves a few extra days to raise more awareness and funding!
Wonderful, fabulous Margaret Litvin, blogger on Shakespeare in the Arab World, posted our campaign. You should totally check out her site, she's got some really great stuff there. Thank you so much, Margaret!!
We have received a $1000 travel grant from Columbia University! We are very excited! Thank you so much to those to have contributed so far. We are on our way!
Shakespeare For A New World; The Palestinian Voice
Manhattan Shakespeare Project goes global!
Help send three women (two teaching artists and a documentary film director) to Ramallah to document the lives of 9 young Palestinian actors and how they use Shakespeare to bridge gaps in their communities.
They are 9 young Palestinian actors and students at the Drama Academy Ramallah. They have lived through curfews, checkpoints, tanks, barricades, raids, arrests, isolation, and marginalization. And they have chosen to be actors. They have chosen to funnel their passion and energy into the arts; into creating a voice that is louder than the authority of occupation. They have chosen to cultivate the imagery of what can be different; to fuel the imagination to dream beyond the restrictions of occupation, and make possible what seems today impossible and unimaginable: to envision peace and the paths past violence.
Since 2010, Manhattan Shakespeare Project – Manhattan’s All-Female Shakespeare Company has been dedicated to fostering the growth of the female artist and using Shakespeare as an educational tool to empower and reach diverse communities, especially those marginalized as a result of socio-economic status and geographic location.
In November 2011 we had the amazing opportunity to perform with the very passionate and talented students from the Drama Academy Ramallah in an international “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” by William Shakespeare. Since then we have been putting together a project that would send three women artists to Palestine to work with the DAR students in an exchange program to create a way of creating theatre. We want to answer the question “How can artists from wildly different backgrounds, cultures, and languages create theatre together, bridge diverse communities, and teach each other and audiences how to grow and live in harmony?”
In September 2012 (yes, only 2 months away, yikes!) we will spend two weeks in Palestine at the Drama Academy Ramallah teaching a series of workshops on Shakespeare Text & Performance, Viewpoints, and movement. During that time we will be collaborating with the DAR students to create an ensemble-based original devised theatre piece incorporating Palestinian youth songs, Shakespeare’s Sonnets (both in English and Arabic), and movement which will tell their story of what it means to be an artist in Palestine. This piece will then be presented to the public in Ramallah.
This original theatre piece will then be presented at The Freedom Theatre in the Jenin refugee camp, and for one week the DAR students will mentor Jenin high school students through the theatre creating process. This will result in another original piece which will be publicly performed in Jenin.
This whole process will be filmed and a documentary of these 9 Palestinian artists will be created, sharing the work, methodology, and stories of these students with an audience beyond the Palestinian borders. The film and methodology will be used for educational outreach to symposiums across the US, and made available worldwide to students to create collaborative theatre pieces and mentor new students and communities.
How You Can Help
Your donation goes directly to funding Phase One of “Shakespeare For A New World; The Palestinian Voice”, which includes transportation, housing, and pre-production of the documentary:
3 Round-trip plane tickets from New York to Tel Aviv: $3,600
Lodging for 21 nights for 3 artists: $3,000
Food for 21 days for 3 artists: $2,200
Film Equipment: $1,500
Editing Equipment: $200
Artists’ Stipend: $4,500
We thank you so much for you time, consideration, and generosity in helping make this project a reality. Every dollar helps, is greatly appreciated, and gets us one step closer to helping the world communities talk to each other.
Spread the Word!
Even spreading the word about our campaign goes a long way to help. Like us on Facebook. Do the Tweety thing. We've made it easy as pie. (mmm, pie...) You can share right from the Facebook/Twitter buttons below, but here are some pre-made tweets to save you some precious keystrokes!
- Support @manhattanshakes as they create a bridge to communities in Palestine through theatre! http://bit.ly/NfQGlu
- Send 3 NY female teaching artists to Drama Academy Ramallah, Palestine. Help build a bridge between communities! http://bit.ly/NfQGlu
- 2 teaching artists and a documentary director. 9 Palestinian drama students. Help @manhattanshakes bridge the gap. http://bit.ly/NfQGlu
For more information about Manhattan Shakespeare Project please visit our website: http://manhattanshakes.org/
Team on This Campaign:
Manhattan Shakespeare Project