Hello and welcome to the Theatre for Living website. Please have a look around. There are reports, videos and interviews about theatre and social justice issues throughout the site.
In 2018, after 37 years of production, I decided, with the support of Staff and the Board of Directors, to devolve the Company and stop doing large productions. Theatre for Living will now be a “sole proprietorship”: David Diamond operating as Theatre for Living.
I am still responding to invitations to do projects in community: workshops with or without performance, trainings, speeches and other small or large inventions as requested. If you would like to consider something in your community please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you to everyone who supported and was a part of Theatre for Living over so many years.
To learn more about TfL workshops, and how you can bring a Theatre for Living process to your community, please contact David Diamond at 604.734.1691 or email email@example.com
During it’s 37 year life, Theatre for Living (Headlines Theatre) Society has produced many hundreds of projects and has became recognized as a world leader in community specific, issue-oriented theatre, winning numerous awards. While the work was called THEATRE FOR LIVING, it is based on Brazilian Director Augusto Boal's Theatre of the Oppressed.
Since 1985 David Diamond, as Artistic Director of the Society has facilitated over 600 Theatre for Living projects with support from staff! Theatre by the community for the community. The company hasworked with many groups around the world including First Nations, refugees, women's groups, environmentalists, street youth, health practitioners, and people who are homeless. Communities have invited us to work on subjects such as racism, violence in the home, school and workplace, the legacy of Residential Schools, language reclamation, harassment, suicide, gangs, sustainability issues, and many others. We were also commissioned by the Federal Government to work in School Districts across Canada doing Power Plays around issues of racism and violence. In 1996/97 the Company toured into eleven First Nations communities throughout BC (in partnership with the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council and Native Families in Crisis) training counselors in Theatre for Living techniques and creating community-specific plays on issues arising out of Residential School issues. This project was called Reclaiming Our Spirits. In 2004 Practicing Democracy was used to put over 90 recommendations forward to Vancouver City Council that dealt with issues of chronic poverty.
David continues this work now, without the Society and staff support, operating as Theatre for Living.
Theatre for Living gives workshop participants the opportunity to experience theatre in a different way - not as something mysterious and inaccessible that is outside their lives, but as a natural language. Culture, after all, used to be ordinary people singing, dancing, painting, carving, and telling stories. If we can reclaim cultural expression as part of our everyday vocabulary - a common language that we use to tell our own collective stories - we are one step closer to being balanced as individuals and as communities.
Since attending the Theatre for Living training workshop, I have experienced an enormous evolution of understanding in the process of group dynamics. My awareness of the delicate balance between planned programming and intuitive facilitation is much sharper. I have a keener sense of honouring the stories of all the people who are in the room, listening to the voice of the voiceless, blurring the lines between protagonist and antagonist. What I have learned has shifted the foundation of my work, and refocused my direction. I am forever grateful for this experience.
Thank you to all involved in šxʷʔam̓ət (home)! I haven't seen any other piece of theatre before that I actually felt had the capacity to shift people's minds and hearts towards authentic reconciliation. This is important work and I was so glad to share in it.
I have seen several Theatre for Living shows over the years. I’m always amazed at how masterful David is at drawing out rich and meaningful dialogue from every moment of every community intervention. This is based in his deep faith that as a living organism a community can heal itself.
University of Alberta