On March 6th, 2014, I was a visiting artist at the Los Angeles LGBT Center to teach a workshop on puppetry and performing objects at sparQ!, an activist theatre mentoring program produced by LifeWorks. There were 8 young people in the sparQ! program who ranged in age from 18-23.
For my session I presented examples of different styles of puppetry and my own work with puppets. After improv warm ups, students broke into groups to present scenes with puppetry using found objects based on the assignment to tell a story using the idea of metaphor. At the end of the in-class presentations, we practiced giving constructive feedback.
The sparQ! program lasted for twelve weeks with a different visiting artist each session. Other visiting artists included improvisors, Mo Gaffney and Tim Bagley. At the end of the program, students performed Breaking the Curse: A Trans*visible Tale at the Village’s Black Box Theater.
Since 1969 the Los Angeles LGBT Center has cared for, championed, and celebrated LGBT individuals and families in Los Angeles and beyond. Today the Center’s more than 600 employees provide services for more LGBT people than any other organization in the world, offering programs, services, and global advocacy that span four broad categories: Health, Social Services and Housing, Culture and Education, Leadership and Advocacy.