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Theatre for Development Workshops and Initiatives Essay


Theatre for development is evident in various practices designed to work with the rural as well as marginalized communities. These activities entail such performances as drama, dance, and puppetry, including songs to convey diverse social messages. In this case, performance is perceived as a pertinent tool for enhancing development, through performance, artists create a room to work with public’s diverse issues, such as language barriers or inability to have access to any form of media. Theatre for development is intended to work on local language, techniques, characters and styles.

Experimental and youth Initiative in TFD

Theatre for development, as identified in this case, revolves within the axis of developmental measures. Most of the development activities are within the scope of exploiting theatrical activities as a participatory step to help the locals share diversified experiences with an aim to promote social transformation. Examining the involved groups may be construed that identified participants had core objectives to educate the masses. This may be explained by the way diverse organizations are involved in creating theatre for development. For instance, the usage of language, music as well as locals ideas is clear in regard to theatre for development in Swaziland. In this way, diverse SiSwati anthologies are used to capture and convey the intended message.

Being the primary objective in any given setting and employing the local spectacle, a wide aspect of theatre for development has increased economic opportunities in addition to cultural demands. Using the local characters along with localized themes, the scope of drama saw diverse organizations, such as ASTG, PET, Fakalikhono Cultural group as well as Phefumula Africa, promote music, poetry, drama as well as story telling locally. As a result the locals have embraced the scope of theatre and this has helped in promoting theatre for development. In this way, the involved groups have thus managed to exploit theatre for development aspects. The greater approach here is thus employed to advocate comedy, tragedy as well as tragic comedy; the importance of such an approach has seen the Swazi theatre being developed in a way that it reflects the local issues, which go beyond social and development agendas.

The participation of FLAS and UNICEF asserts that theatre is used to empower the local communities. The participation of these organizations depicts that theatre can be a strong tool to foster community integration and development. The application of theatre for development thus contributed to the recognition of identity research, in-house organizational development as well as theoretical modeling in relation to identity dynamics. Considering the above-mentioned, a wide scope of entire theatre for development which is linked to performance has thus opened to integration of inter-cultural theatre development. Using theatre, the government, NGOs as well as other interested parties have considerably managed to handle diverse local issues; this has been made possible by harnessing the local talents through poetry, music, riddles, comedy as well as storytelling.

The Siphocosini Youth Group TFD Workshop

The value of theatre development cannot be ignored since it plays a paramount role in enhancing cultural integration. Examining the scope of theatre development in relation to The Siphocosini Youth Group TFD Workshop, it can be assumed that this group successfully adhered to the established theatre development dynamics. As presented in the TFD workshops, it is obvious that the group embraced the theatre dynamics, such as scriptwriting, plot analysis, characterization, theatre infrastructure including social and cultural dynamics. The methods they employed, such as background documentation, focus group reviews as well as informal meeting with locals, have thus contributed to increasing the significance of theatre development.

Exploiting the scope of performance dynamics, theatre is depicted as an effective tool of creating communal awareness resulting in community education along with social development. Also, in this workshop, it is analyzed that theatre is depicted as a non confrontational approach of handling diverse social grievances, such as HIV/AIDS, conflicts as well as advocating for social responsibility. Likewise, the workshop, as presented by the organizers, captures and exploits theatre dynamics in engaging the local participants in dialogue which is important in enhancing development. What this illustrates is that language plays a pivotal role in enhancing development as well as upholding the thoughts conveyed to the intended audience. On the other hand, the process of establishing spectacle is highly evident since the work conveners as well embraced integration of ideas, themes as well as music to scrutinize existing and anticipated diversity in interests.

The presentation touches the theatre development strongly reflecting on issues affecting the society and, in some cases, it is viewed as a taboo to be discussed openly. Hence, the significance of performance is thus employed to explore these issues. What this presents is a deeper understanding of issues affecting the society. Thus, examining the usage of theatre development tools in this scenario, the significance value is related to upholding cultural values, advocating for social development. It ought to be noted that theatre has been presented as a way of promoting gender equality, and this has contributed to improved communication among the locals. Thus, the workshop appears to have facilitated and embraced diverse theatre development tools, such as language, drama, performance, music, among others to advance a positive social integration. The usage of plays promotes significance of theatre development. Through these plays, it is clear that various themes were examined where plot, storyline, theme and suspense were combined to create a positive performance designed to arouse the audience as to respond to the issues examined.

Zibonele TFD Workshop

Theatre for development has played a greater role in enhancing theatrical performance in educating Swazi populace. The assimilation of dialogue, as presented in the workshop, testifies how theatre is useful in enhancing social stability and equally advocates social transformation. The workshop explores the local participation in relation to promotion of health practices, literacy as well as development goals. The workshop, as presented in this case, employs the dynamics of dialogue through language since the involved populace shared a common language. On the other hand, the approach employed echoes the desired results.

The anticipated goals thus reflect the community innate desires. Theatre for development in this case has been employed to foster community development. It is well articulated in the way the locals participated in drama, music, poetry as well as storytelling. I regard to the communal development, the workshop explored different theatre propositions. What this posits is that theatre is more of a tool of transitory passage towards highly desirable social elements. In addition, it has been presented as a factor of advocating for civil-minded society. Through oral presentations, dances, songs, mimes as well as dramatic enactment, theatre has emerged as a platform that internalizes social core values as well as beliefs that are pertinent to social development.

From Africa context, theatre has played a significant role and established itself as a predominant tool for development through educating the community. Hence, the way theatre has been developed in Swaziland serves as a useful parameter for social functions through educating the various ethnic communities. With the dynamic platform presented in this workshop, it has emerged as a tool that can conscientize as well as mobilize diverse groups in any given community. In this regard, theatre for development has thus depicted the expansive social realities and singularly advocated audience participation.

Men-only TFD Workshop

The young men volunteered to participate in the workshop including participation in various theatre presentation illustrates how significant theatre for development has become in the region. Since this workshop attempted to challenge the various long standing issues which had facilitated the adult culprits to get away, the staged play reflects the significance of having a developed theatre. This is more allied to the fact that theatre addresses issues that affect the society directly. Hence, the theatre for development workshop which had been organized in association with UNICEF gave the local a chance to evaluate themselves through plays. It ought to be noted that the workshop demonstrates that theatre for development is designed as a platform where the citizens employ dialogue to tackle issues that in one way or the other concern them.

However, proper coordination has established strong ground for creativity, hence, in the course of theatre development, this workshop process was given a strong consideration. The significance of such an approach is more linked to development of various themes explored either in poetry, dance, or music. Likewise, the workshop equally exploited the scope of product. It would be important to understand that in theatre for development, the product is essential since it shows if there is any progress achieved. Moreover, audience played a critical role in theatre for development as it cannot be effective without audience participation. As demonstrated in this workshop, theatre for development requires audience, it is also instrumental to state that physical evidence of audience influences a performance, creates expectations including enhancing performance in one way or the other. Theatre is in essence a living breathing art form.


Theatre for development, as depicted in African setting, plays a critical role in enhancing social stability and healthy practices as well as aerating fertile grounds for improving literacy and economic development. As noted within the analyzed workshops, the conveners employed numerous theatres for development tools so as to capture the imagination of their audiences and equally convey their messages effectively. In summary, theatre for development ought to be perceived as a relational approach in coordinated programs designed for sustainable development. The rationale for this assertion is anchored to the basic role of the theatre for development. Therefore, theatre for development, as it has been exploited in the examined instances, has positively engaged the audiences. Moreover, the scope of involved performances has established the theatre to be a valuable platform for involving the masses in communal development activities.

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1. IvyPanda. "Theatre for Development Workshops and Initiatives." August 22, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/theatre-for-development-workshops-and-initiatives/.


IvyPanda. "Theatre for Development Workshops and Initiatives." August 22, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/theatre-for-development-workshops-and-initiatives/.


IvyPanda. 2020. "Theatre for Development Workshops and Initiatives." August 22, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/theatre-for-development-workshops-and-initiatives/.


IvyPanda. (2020) 'Theatre for Development Workshops and Initiatives'. 22 August.

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