The Score Background

Over the last few years, ILBIJERRI has ‌developed ‌a‌ ‌new‌ ‌model of theatre-making ‌‌to‌ ‌ensure‌ ‌deep‌ ‌community‌ ‌engagement‌ ‌in‌ ‌the‌ ‌discussion,‌ ‌and‌ ‌as‌ ‌a‌ ‌vehicle‌ ‌to‌ ‌promote‌ ‌positive‌ ‌choices‌ ‌around‌ ‌prevention‌ ‌and‌ ‌treatment‌ ‌of‌ ‌STIs‌ ‌in‌ ‌young‌ ‌people‌ ‌in‌ ‌a‌ ‌range‌ ‌of‌ ‌communities.‌ ‌ ‌

By‌ ‌centring‌ ‌participants’‌ ‌stories‌ ‌and‌ ‌experiences,‌ ‌participatory‌ ‌theatre‌ ‌gives‌ ‌community‌ ‌members‌ ‌ownership‌ ‌over‌ ‌material‌ ‌being‌ ‌explored,‌ ‌and‌ ‌agency‌ ‌in‌ ‌discovering‌ ‌culturally‌ ‌safe‌ ‌ways‌ ‌to‌ ‌reduce‌ ‌stigma‌ ‌and‌ ‌address‌ ‌sexual‌ ‌health.‌ ‌

The‌ ‌Score‌ ‌‌has‌ ‌been‌ ‌developed‌ ‌by Kamarra Bell-Wykes, Stefo Nantsou, and Sarah Woodland with ‌performers‌ ‌from‌ ‌Wemba‌ ‌Wemba,‌ ‌Wotjobaluk ‌and‌ ‌Gunditjmara‌.  

The‌ ‌model‌ ‌begins‌ ‌with‌ ‌a ‌performance‌ ‌‌of The‌ ‌Score,‌ ‌‌a ‌twenty‌ ‌minute‌ ‌high‌ ‌energy‌ ‌play‌ ‌that‌ ‌features‌ ‌strong‌ ‌archetypes‌ ‌[Aunties,‌ ‌Uncles‌ ‌and‌ ‌young‌ people]‌ ‌set‌ ‌in‌ ‌the ‌world‌ ‌of‌ ‌a‌ ‌football‌ ‌knockout‌ ‌carnival after party.‌ ‌ ‌The‌ ‌audience‌ ‌is then ‌invited‌ ‌to‌ ‌consider‌ ‌next‌ ‌steps‌ ‌for‌ ‌the‌ ‌characters. ‌Each‌ ‌suggestion‌ ‌is‌ then ‌played‌ ‌back‌ ‌to‌ ‌them‌ ‌by‌ ‌the‌ ‌actors‌ ‌in‌ ‌a‌ ‌dialogue‌ ‌theatre‌ ‌technique.‌ ‌ ‌

ILBIJERRI is working in partnership with the University of Melbourne to research the making and touring of the model. This has been funded by the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) so that the approach can be documented and shared more widely. Research will be taking place alongside the performance and residency, with communities and individuals deciding whether or not they would like to be included in the research story.

This project is supported by the Victorian Government through the Department of Health.

Cover Image: Incorporated pattern from original work by Natasha Carter of Murrupuk Art.

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