ABLE Assembly: Arts Better the Lives of Everyone 2021 | Theme: Intersectionality, Disability, and Arts Education ABLE Assembly: Arts Better the Lives of Everyone 2021 | Theme: Intersectionality, Disability, and Arts Education

Pre-recorded 20 Minute Session: Act for Advocacy

- EDT
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Wendy Duke
The Center for Applied Drama and Autism | Theatre on the Spectrum, Co-Founder | Program Director

Wendy Duke, Company Director, is a proud graduate of the University of Akron’s theatre department (BA 1973, MA 2010). She has had a passion for theatre since childhood. She began the drama program at Miller South School for the Arts in Akron, Ohio in 1994, leaving there after 22 years to start the Center for Applied Drama and Autism in 2016. She loves helping to unleash hidden talents and encouraging creativity in people of all abilities. Wendy has presented on various aspects of utilizing applied drama to empower people with autism and disabilities at the Milestones Autism Conference, VSA regional and national conferences, OCALICON, and the National Autism Society as well as for schools and universities in NE Ohio.


“Act for Advocacy” is an applied drama workshop to help people learn to advocate for themselves and others. Drama games and exercises provide a useful way for people of all abilities to learn the skills they need to assert their rights and the rights of those around them. This workshop provides a safe and judgment-free space to share experiences of discrimination. Act for Advocacy empowers participants, by acting out real-life scenarios using improv and Theatre of the Oppressed techniques. Injustice can take many forms from landlords ignoring tenants' rights, to someone deliberating damaging a student's artwork, or an individual is made to feel that they have no talents or gifts to share with the world at large. Until these issues are uncovered and addressed, arts learning and quality of life will be hindered. In this hands-on workshop, audience members will be invited to "act for advocacy" with our company.

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