With the support of the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union
DIGITAL NATIVES is a cooperation project between five of the UTE's member theatres: Volkstheater Wien, Comédie de Reims, Hungarian Theatre of Cluj, Schauspiel Köln and National Theatre of Northern Greece. The starting point of their collaboration is the play Concord Floral by Jordan Tannahill, a play about teenage identity and interactions, the power of perception and technology. The five theatres will take the text and work on it, either staging a production or using its themes as the basis for workshops with amateur teenage actors. The theatres, together with their amateur actors, will simultaneously develop a digital experiment during the rehearsal period. These digital experiments are contrasted with four conferences that will take place throughout the course of the project, allowing people to look at the topic through the eyes of academics and field experts, as well as digital natives as experts on their lifestyle. The project will culminate in a Digital Festival Night that will bring the project full circle both in terms of the artistic as well as the digital output.
The young adults working on the Concord Floral production at the Volkstheater Wien (directed by Simon Windisch) will develop the characters of the play through creating Instagram profiles for them parallel to the rehearsal process. They will relate their characters directly to circumstances and experiences from their Viennese living situation; they will get in touch—as their characters—with the outside world.
To round out their exploration of digital issues, the Volkstheater will examine digital communication and relationships with the help of teens and "silver surfers". Young and old will connect to compare and contrast their digital lives.
More about the production here.
A presentation of the characters is available here.
Information about "Silver Surfers" here
The Hungarian Theatre of Cluj will examine positive and negative aspects of a digital lifestyle. While creating their theatre production, the teenagers participating in Cluj’s Concord Floral will create a vlog in their digital experiment, which will then also be incorporated into the production. Their vlogs will not only take the audience behind the scenes of the production, but into their thoughts on the role that digital technology has in their lives. Their vlogs will bring theatre production to the digital world and explore the balance between the two.
The Comédie de Reims will bring this project directly to the schools by creating workshops around Concord Floral, documenting them with the help of a Facebook Page and casting some of its participants in the production. The amateur actors involved will be guided in creating their performance of the play, directed by Ferdinand Barbet, by the artists in residence at the Comédie de Reims, the “Collectif 17”. Their digital experiment will focus on how digital means frequently are the source of suffering, especially among teenagers, due to cyber bullying, social pressure, feeling of exclusion, etc.
Detailed information and photos are available on their Facebook page.
Check them out on Instagram
The Schauspiel Köln will contrast physical with digital experiences by connecting the generations in the Cologne district of Chorweiler. Parallel to their rehearsals and production of Concord Floral directed by Bassam Ghazi, this encounter will lead to an exchange between internet-free generations and a generation that barely knew a world without a smartphone.
The teenagers will collect stories from the past and today, and ideas for the future, all of which will be incorporated in theatre installations - Theatrical App Walk - that will take place in parts of the district, resulting in an augmented reality experience for the entire Chorweiler community. Thus, a technology-free way of experiencing the world meets a digitized lifestyle through using augmented reality.
Information about the production can be found here.
The National Theatre of Northern Greece will organize workshops for teens in which they deal with issues of digitisation in Concord Floral. The 40 participants will create workshop scenes working together in smaller groups, focusing on the challenges they face due to digitisation and the effects this has on their families, schools, and friends. The teenagers will use social media to document their explorations in the theatre workshops and gain even more insight by encouraging teenagers in Greece to engage with them online in a discussion on digitisation.