Theatre has always been adaptive to its environment and we’re seeing that proven true over and over again at the moment. Theatre may remain closed but that hasn’t stopped The Old Globe from finding new and innovative ways to engage their audiences. Master Teaching Artist Lisel Gorell-Getz and her colleagues are working hard to make sure that from Old Globe coloring books to Thinking Shakespeare, and educational and interactive activities there is something for everyone at The Old Globe.
In the true spirit of education and theatre, Lisel took a few moments to chat with me about being a Master Teaching Artist, the ever-expanding world of online learning, and how imagination and play are vital in making theatre matter to every generation.
What does being a Master Teaching artist involve for a theatre like The Old Globe?
We have so much going on right now in Arts Engagement at The Old Globe as we strive to make theatre matter to more people, digitally! I love collaborating with the team of artists and community engagement specialists in Arts Engagement who work every day to create opportunities and connection with the public.
As a Master Teaching Artist, I’m responsible for developing curriculum and lesson plans for the programs I manage (my programs are: School in the Park, Globe Learning and Globe To Go), as well as providing support for all the other engagement programs we administer at the theatre and in the community. I’m also responsible for hiring, training, and supervising teaching artists for all the programming we offer. I work closely with all the program managers to ensure our cohort of teaching artists share the values of our organization and can partner with our communities expertly and enthusiastically.
How have you approached creating these lessons for virtual learning? Were there any challenges you wanted to overcome when adapting them to this new format?
As all classroom teachers know, converting lessons to online distance learning is a unique challenge. Theatre by its very nature relies on collaboration and connection. Our teaching artists at The Old Globe have been working on meeting the needs of all learners in our K-12 classrooms which has encouraged us to utilize visual aids and multi-media in our lessons in unique ways. Adapting the lessons to an online asynchronous learning process is really an extension of those methods, and gives us the opportunity to really distill the objectives of each lesson to encourage accessibility and increase engagement. It’s been a great experience!
Have there been any fun discoveries/surprises that have come about in this process?
Well, it’s given me the chance to “play” in my classes again! Hands-on activities require lots of experimentation and exploration and I’ve had a blast re-imagining how to share the joy of theatre during this time when there is a lot of anxiety and worry in the world. My biggest hope is that these lessons and activities will provide ideas for young theatre makers to explore creativity in their own lives. It brings me excitement and hope to think about what the future of theatre might look like as the new generation of storytellers and theatre-makers come of age.
Below are the links to the new programs from The Old Globe for you to check out and enjoy!
GLOBE TO GO: Downloadable resources for teachers and educators; check them out on our website: https://www.theoldglobe.org/edp-pages/2020/globe-to-go/
– REFLECTING SHAKESPEARE TV: Journal along and discover Shakespeare through our program originally created for people experiencing incarceration; catch the episodes on our Facebook & YouTube channel: The Old Globe, starting tomorrow May 28.
– CREATIVE YOUTH STUDIO: Professional development for youth with industry guests every Saturday live at 11 AM starting May 30 on Instagram (@tog_ae) & Facebook! Link to the event: https://www.facebook.com/events/615395965852840
– PLAYWRIGHTS UNSTUCK: Be a fly on the wall as we take a look on Globe-commissioned San Diego-based playwrights’ development process; every Tuesday live at 3 pm starting June 2 on our Facebook! Link to the event: https://www.facebook.com/events/252633279312468/
– THE LIVING ROOM PLAY WORKSHOP: Learn how to write, develop, direct, and present your own ‘living-room’ play; every Thursday live at 3 pm starting June 4 on our Facebook! Link to the event: https://www.facebook.com/events/352015415758578/
Thanks so much to Master Teaching Artist Lisel Gorell-Getz for her time for this interview and check out her educational resources in Globe to Go!
Looking for more ideas of what to do during this time of quarantine? Click here for more suggestions