A Playback Theatre performance is a creative form of dialogue between the actors and audience members. The Conductor asks open questions and invites responses from the audience. One person volunteers to speak and the actors respond with an artistic enactment for everyone to watch. The Conductor asks another question which generates a response from a different person in the audience and another enactment follows, and so on. In this way a conversation amongst audience members is facilitated by the company, which can be open or focused on a specific theme.
In Playback Theatre everyone watches the enactments together and this shared experience allows everyone to meet authentically. This creates a level of understanding that would not happen in the same way without the actors ‘playing back’ of the story. The enactments give everyone a chance to feel the truth of the story and this evokes a response from another audience member who becomes the next person to speak. In this way a deep and intimate conversation can happen with any audience on any theme.
I like that there is a mixture of people from different cultures and countries, it is a very mixed culture here at Women’s Group. I like that I can begin to understand what is going on for different women in their own culture. It is a good space where I can have face to face conversations with other women. I like how empaphetic and understanding everyone is to everybody’s stories about their lives, it opens my eyes.”