The Legacy Project Educational Outreach

Voice Theatre Legacy Educational Outreach
Voice Theatre Legacy Educational Outreach – Hannover, Germany

One person can make a difference

What is the meaning of home and community?

2019 – Berlin, New York City, Upstate, NY  

WWII  – Refugee Crisis – Creative Writing – Performance  – Visual Art

Due to the overwhelming success of 73 Voice Theatre anti-bullying workshops  implemented from 2015 – 2017 in the U.S. and over 77 workshops of  The Legacy Project in the U.K., Germany, France and the U.S. that took place from 1997-2011, Voice Theatre is creating new interactive workshops to combat bullying, define the meaning of home and examine the refugee crisis. In 2019 the in-school workshops of The Legacy Project, the after school rehearsals and performances of Legacy will mark the 80th year of the beginning of WWII. 

Naturalized American and German students will write monologues based on their experiences and definitions of: home, racism, discrimination and bullying and refugee students will write monologues focusing on why they left their homes. Selected monologues from both groups will be integrated into the play, Legacy and performed by students alongside the professional actors of Voice Theatre in all performances.  performance students may need to attend additional rehearsals.

Our goal is for students to see each other as individuals rather than just “refugees” or “Americans” or “Germans” or “the other”.  To develop the skills of listening, empathy and respect for differing viewpoints and cultures.

Workshops aligned to Common Core Learning Standards. Time & length tailored to each school.

Participating students meet to share their experiences relating to the themes of the play.

Painting and Drawing Exhibition
Students paint and draw images based on the themes of the play, and their present and past homes.  Finished artwork is exhibited in the theatre lobby.

Creative Writing
Students write monologues, focusing on their own experiences of racism, bullying, being a refugee, or social exclusion. Selected monologues are then performed by students in all Legacy performances. 

Refugee Crisis, Research & History
Students examine what life was like for German teenagers during 1939. Refugee students tell their stories of what life was like for them before they left their country and how life has changed for them.

Theatre Rehearsals and Performance
Students explore the themes of home, belonging, bullying, exclusion and the other. Using theatre games, improvisation, role playing, mirroring and journal writing students write monologues examining their own experiences of racial exclusion. In the U. S. material is aligned to Common Core Curriculum Standards. Emphasis will be on collaboration, original ideas, teamwork and constructive feedback. Designated students will perform their monologues in Legacy alongside the professional actors. Students will also be part of the Voice Movement Chorus and have small speaking roles. Rehearsals take place after school one week before Legacy performances. 

Student Performances and Talk-Backs
Students attend school performances of Legacy and participate in talk-backs.

Wrap Up Session
All students meet one last time to share how The Legacy Project informed and touched their lives’. Printed material produced by students is distributed.

The Play
The play unravels as a young American girl unearths the true story of her father’s cowardice and courage. Based on events from the playwright’s life, this suspenseful story focuses on our theme: one person can make a difference. Floor to ceiling archival photographs, live original Klezmer music and the uniquely stylized ensemble techniques of Voice Theatre heighten the experience of Legacy

Schools that participated in The Legacy Project

New York City:

Voice Theatre Outreach Helena Lange Schule, Hannover (top), Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, London (bottom)
Voice Theatre Outreach Helena Lange Schule, Hannover, Germany
Bristol Old Vic Theatre, UK  (bottom)

Seward Park High School, 10th grade
Washington Irving High School, 12th grade
Bayard Ruston High School for the Humanities, 10th grade
Chelsea High School, 10th grade
University Neighborhood High School, 9th grade
The T. Schreiber Studio, professional

Detroit Inner City:
Western International High School, 11th grade
Cass Technical High School, 11th grade
Mumford High School, 11th grade
North Farmington High School, 11th grade
Renaissance High School, 11th grade

United Kingdom:
Hartcliffe High School, Bristol, England, 10th grade
Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, Bristol, England, college level
City & Westminster College, London, England, college level
Middlesex University, Cockfosters, London, England, college level
Queen Margaret College, Edinburgh, Scotland, college level

Georges Lapierre High School, Bordeaux, 10th grade

Helena Lange Schule, Hannover, 11th grade

Workshop Synopsis

The play Legacy is read before the workshop.

Session I

Naturalized and refugee students meet separately in groups with Voice Theatre’s Teaching Artists and translators to explore the themes of bullying and “the other”.  Refugee students will share why they had to leave their homes.  Both populations will explore the importance of community and home.  In this first session it is determined which students want to participate in the visual arts, the writing & performance workshops.

Sessions II-IX

Writing & Performance Workshops

Voice Theatre’s Teaching Artists will implement improvisation, role-playing, theatre games and mirroring as students write monologues based on their own experiences of home and bullying.  In some schools it may be appropriate for refugee students to meet separately for sessions II-VI. Students also examine what life was like for German teenagers during 1939 and refugee students tell their stories of what life was like for them before they had to leave their country. Workshops give an overview of the economic, cultural, political and historical factors that influenced German teenagers in 1939  and the reasons why present day refugee teenagers were forced to flee their homes. In session VII both populations will meet together sharing their monologues. 

Visual Arts

Students are guided to create visual images in the mediums of paint or pencil of their own homes or images based on the play, Legacy. Selected works are exhibited in the theatre lobby during Legacy performances. 

Sessions X-XII + rehearsal workshops after school

Performance + Talk Back Workshops

  • Please note: approximately 5 workshops of after school sessions will be needed for selected students in the Voice Movement Chorus, monologue presenters and small speaking roles. 
  • Students attend a performance of Legacy and participate in a talk back session.  Students share how this experience has informed and touched their lives’. Students and teachers fill out final questionnaires for the Final Report on the project.
  • Refugee students will have 9 additional workshops.