The GTP Institute

“We have become global citizens. We have been scared at times to be pushed beyond our comfort zone, but we have learned how courageous we can be and how much we can do and become. This is a life-changing experience and I am deeply grateful for it.” 

- Sydnee Houlette, Pilot Program

A major initiative of The Global Theatre Project is The GTP Institute.   We have piloted this program and are currently in final stages toward the launch (to be placed on our list for more information when it becomes available please contact us at info@theglobaltheatreproject.org).

We are in a moment of time where both our local and our global capacity of living together peacefully is at risk. Our perspectives remain primitive in response to others and this impedes both our ability to access our higher gifts and our clear capacity to build a peaceful world for ourselves and our children. We are more easily manipulable because we are not evolving and this allows a fear-driven society to take root. This is not, in any way, the only path ahead of us. But if we continue as we are, without deep change both relationally and individually, we will continue to refine our repetition of history with more and more dangerous results.

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The potential impact of a partnership between Community Renewal International and The Global Theatre Project offers a powerful response to this very precarious moment in human history. The partnership responds directly to what Lewis Mumford speaks of so eloquently in “The Transformations of Man:”

“. . . the intimacies that they share, the cooperation that they pledge, are essential to the development of man’s basic humanity . . . the more readily we conceive the planet as a single unit and move about it freely, the more necessary it is to establish a home base with visible landmarks and cherished personalities. The world will not become a neighborhood, even if every part of it is bound by instant communication and rapid transportation, if the neighborhood itself as an idea and a social form is allowed to disappear.”

What Mumford is offering when he wrote this in 1956 is a pathway for peace and a more humane planet if we do two things: 1) establish healthy neighborhoods and 2) apply the values found there toward consciously establishing global interconnectivity. It is up to us whether our homes are healthy and our planet at peace. Mack McCarter developed a process through CRI toward building healthy neighborhoods. He has identified and put into practice the basis of that – developing the Whole Person who can then have healthy relationships with others and together share the ‘intimacies’ and ‘cooperation’ mentioned by Mumford above. The GTP was established to utilize theatre practices as an activation for responsible and empathetic global citizenship. Through a process that engages community and inspires the experience of individual creativity and intellectual curiosity, the theatrical events contribute to healthy local environment and social-issue engagement of global concerns.

The crisis of the moment is that our perspective both locally and globally of ‘the other’ is becoming weaponized and utilized for the formation of seeing more enemies then allies. But through the establishment of The GTP Institute – an educational and community-engagement partnership of CRI and The GTP – we will work to counter this movement.

The GTP Institute will stand on its own in its uniqueness. Establishing an educational program which draws to it young theatre artists from around the country who are seeking to be active contributors to healthy society, they will study in both the home of The GTP and of CRI. First they will travel to Florence, Italy where they will deepen their artistry, explore the meaning of “artist-activists” and study the basic premises of CRI as applies to the process of community-engagement outlined by The GTP. The Whole Artist elements will be introduced. These have been developed to support CRI’s Whole Person as a step necessary to create empathetic individuals capable of embracing the responsibility and joy found in “the development of man’s basic humanity.” The second part of the educational process will take the students to Shreveport, LA where they will apply directly their study in community-engaged work and processes with youth and community members of diverse communities of the city. Individuals from all ethnic and economic backgrounds will be engaged in the development of a theatrical event for the broader community. This process will interlock The GTP and CRI in a marriage which demonstrates and champions the development of the individual as both a Whole Person and a Whole Artist recognizing this development as a necessity for the world to, in fact, become a neighborhood of mankind in active engagement toward one common goal – peaceful and supportive relationships.

This premise has evolved into what surely is one of the most unique international educational opportunities for serious students of theatre and its impact on our society.  Students of The GTP Institute will enter into a world specifically designed to integrate them creatively into the communities in which they are working and living with the underlying mission of awakening them to their global citizenship and capacity as Creative Leaders.

The GTP Institute will launch in a split semester between Florence Italy, where we have long established creative and institutional relationships, and Shreveport, Louisiana the home for 24 years of Community Renewal International.   Once the format and structure for the The GTP Institute is in place, The Global Theatre Project will take this replicable program model to other locations throughout the world.

Students of The GTP Institute will be on the cutting edge exploring theatre’s relevance for global response and community healing. For further information please contact us at info@theglobaltheatreproject.org

For information on The GTP Institute artist/educators, please click here.

We invite you also to visit our photo gallery.