Using Drama to Spark Discussion about Trauma

The last week of February will bring two powerful pieces of drama to the Tandem Friends Upper School, with each production followed by facilitated discussions afterwards. It's a great way to use the arts to create thoughtful dialogue about difficult topics.

Our Upper School drama program will present 26 Pebblesa powerful play by Eric Ulloa, that showcases residents of Newtown, CT affected by the tragic events and community rebuilding that took place during and after the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy. 26 Pebbles looks deeply into how a community processes shock and grief and draws parallels to living as a community that is trying to be something more than the tragedy that defines it. It seemed a natural and healing choice following the community challenging events of August 12, 2017 in Charlottesville. The Upper School, joined by 8th graders, will watch the play together, followed by a facilitated discussion with the cast. The query groups that afternoon will focus on questions prepared by cast members that will relate to the show's message. Public performances of the play will be held at 7pm on February 28, March 1 and March 2, with a 2pm matinee on Sunday, March 3. The Friday, March 1 and Saturday, March 2 shows will be followed by a Q&A/Talkback session. 

The following day, LiveArts Education will bring its Teen Theatre Ensemble Workshop production of I Never Saw It Coming to the Upper School for a perfomance and facilitated post-show discussion. Written by Doug Grissom in 1997, the show focuses on teenage relationships and has some strong Tandem connections. When the show was originally performed here, our own Mary Lyman Bias and Andriana Hench were involved - Andriana worked on it for her Senior Project and Mary was in the cast. Last summer, sophomore Anna Kalnite was part of a team that worked with the author to update the production for today's teens. Parents who are interested in seeing the show can attend the LiveArts performance on February 23 at 8:30pm (pay what you can at the door).