Run workshops in Chicago? Of course! Online of course! Collaboration with A.B.L.E. Ensemble.

Over 2 Sundays in October, RootPrints Theatre was invited to deliver very special workshops for our friends over at A.B.L.E. Ensemble. A.B.L.E. (Artists Breaking Limits & Expectations) is a Chicago nonprofit that creates theatre and film projects for, with, and by individuals with Down syndrome and other intellectual and developmental disabilities. You can read more about them and take a look at some of their amazing projects here.

A.B.L.E. was exploring myths from various parts of the world which they would later use as inspiration for creating their own stories for #ableanthology. We were invited to be part of their #virtualrehearsals and the online platform meant that we were not limited by geography, what a treat!

We shared about and explored a legend called The Boy and the Thunder from the Ticuna tribe in the Amazon rainforest and a Balinese folktale called Go to Sleep Gecko ! The sessions were epic - if we can say so ourselves - and it was a thrill to experience the excitement of the participants discovering new stories, acting our different moments from the stories and getting inspired to devise their own pieces.

Worldwide lockdowns and restrictions imposed meant that many face to face theatre activities had to be curtailed. Different measures and precautions had to be taken and like many organisations, we have also had to rethink where to focus our energies. Collaborating with A.B.L.E. entirely remotely, while we were in London and them in Chicago, presented a most wonderful opportunity for us to design bespoke and accessible online workshops. It also reminded us that the theatre and community arts industry is a resilient one and that we have to remain determined, hopeful and flexible, as much as we can, as much as we are allowed to be.

Thank you A.B.L.E. for having us and we look forward to more collaborations in the future!

If you would like us to bring such interactive online storytelling workshops to your organisation anywhere in the world, please do get in touch with us! We would love to hear from you.

That’s it from us for now. Till our next blog, adios, vanakkam. Stay safe.