Two Kingston University students, Yasemin Gava, 22, and Clarissa Kim, 26, recently combined their love for theatre with their passion for human rights activism and founded their own theatre company, Performing Change.
The company focuses on creating a platform to raise awareness on human rights issues through new, diverse and stimulating performances. Indeed, at a time where visual and creative stimulus are becoming an increasingly popular way of propagating a message, Yasemin and Clarissa believe that the medium of theatre will resonate deeply within their audiences and leave them with a more profound understanding of human rights.
Performing Change is currently working on a play, Blurred Justice, which won Amnesty International UK's 2016 Marsh award. The play takes the audience through Sharif's journey, a young member of the Yemeni Houthi militia, who is being tried in an extraordinary court filled with perplexing characters, for taking part in an attack on Saudi Arabia.
As he is being questioned, the play explores the meaning of the word terrorist and the complications of the Yemeni civil war, with flashbacks of Sharif’s life, unraveling his personal motivations and important information on the involvement of the UK within the arms trade.
Additionally, Blurred Justice aims to establish a collaborative relationship with the audience within the space of the courtroom, and in doing so will give them the chance to play the jury and make the final court decision that will influence the outcome of Sharif’s story.
The play, therefore, will get the audience thinking about these issues and engage further in the performance while concurrently acknowledging how their voices can create an impact.
Within their experience in the field of drama and politics, Yasemin and Clarissa have identified that the problem with political theatre is that often this type of work tends to preach to the converted, making it much harder to spark a debate. For this reason, they have chosen to incorporate elements of humour, romance
and powerful emotions into their play, allowing it to be enjoyed by everyone.
Performing Change is very happy to announce that, following their first three shows at the Rose Theatre Studio in Kingston upon Thames, Blurred Justice has been accepted to this year's International Youth Arts Festival in July, Camden Fringe Festival and Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August. For this reason, they have launched a Kickstarter to support their tour and have already reached 22% of their funding goal in just six days.
It is possible to donate to their Kickstarter and support their story by searching "Blurred Justice" at www.kickstarter.com
or simply by clicking the link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2074075917/blurred-justice
Furthermore, to receive updates about their show, you can follow Performing Change on Twitter (@PerformingC), Instagram (@performingchange), Facebook (@performingchange) or on their website (www.performingchange.co.uk).
Article supplied by Yasemin Gava