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What is Land and Body (o Tierra y Cuerpo)?

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In 2019 Power Street was funded by The Bartol Foundation and The Resist Foundation to offer free bilingual adult theater classes taught in both English and Spanish at West Kensington Ministry. Students explored Experimental Theater with Gabriela Sanchez and Playwriting with Erlina Ortiz. The program was inspired by the lack of opportunity to escape daily life that happens naturally as we get older - we envisioned this program as an opportunity for adults to return to imagination and play. 

Students gained confidence, collaborated with their neighbors, and learned how to share their voices. 

Our past Teaching Artists

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Sabriaya Shipley

(She/They) 

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Tamanya M. M. Garza (She/Her) 

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Erlina Ortiz

(She/Her) 

What does the Land & Body classes look like?  

During the summer of 2021, the class explored the multiple voices of the community through various storytelling prompts centered around themselves and the communities they came from. 

This video, Community Critique: Your Story is My Story is the culmination of the class led by Sabriaya Shipley. Over the course of six weeks, these amazing storytellers explored various tools of personal monologue and digital storytelling from poetry as performance, community ethnography, personal archiving, and dramaturgy. Enjoy!

Tierra y Cuerpo is a program designed to both teach adults the basics of theater writing and performance, but also to bring together people from all different backgrounds. Though classes are held in West Kensington, there are participants from South Jersey and the Philadelphia suburbs. Even for the students from the neighborhood, it gives them more familiar faces to look for while navigating their days.

“People here are meeting for the first time,” said Ortiz. “Now they know each other.”

For playwriting student H.C. Davis, thanks to the sharing activities, her classmates now feel like family.

Student Testimony
by
Anthony Web
(2022)

SIX WEEKS

In the beginning

We were thoughts without words

Mingling with in our own selves

Waiting to emerge 

Slowly words appeared

And we gave them movement

Pushing out from self-imposed boundaries

Daring to express what we felt

Fear turned to joy and back to fear

Not knowing how to fly but flying anyway

Acceptance became a far-off branch

But damn it we made it…the view is great

and now it’s time to dance.

POWER of Education

Here at Power Street we believe that performing arts and education go hand in hand. Our Resident Artists are trained in a variety of theater techniques, with years of experience working with students both inside and outside of classrooms. Power Street has developed workshops in:

 

Conflict Resolution Theater
Bilingual Playwriting (Spanish and English)
Storytelling

Classes are wonderful for team and community building. We are happy to work with your organization, your class, or in your neighborhood. No experience is necessary to participate - just a sense of fun!

Power Street Theatre is sponsored by;

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Independence Media Foundation 2022
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PST is fiscally sponsored by the Culture Trust of Greater Philadelphia.

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