The Freedom Theatre is running three theatre clubs for youth in the Jenin area, both at the theatre in the refugee camp, at Taheel il Fatayat, a rehabilitation centre for girls and young women in Jenin town, and in the village Zebabde. Two more clubs are about to be started.
Ahmad Al Rokh, resident artist at The Freedom Theatre, is responsible for two of the current clubs. At Taheel il Fatayat, he is giving training to a group of thirteen girls in their late teens who are working towards a presentation about women’s rights and female prisoners. “We started with theatre games to break through the initial shyness and now we are focused on group-building, establishing trust between the participants”, says Ahmad Al Rokh. On May 20 when there is a graduation ceremony at the centre, the group will make a presentation for their families and then they will continue to go deeper into the theatre training.
The group at The Freedom Theatre consists of over twenty 9 to 15 year-olds who have been involved in the theatre workshops longer and moved from theatre games into the second level of acting where they focus more on developing characters and working on text. Ahmad Al Rokh is currently writing a play called ‘Balance’ that will include music and movement, and that will be performed during the summer school holidays. “In the play, there is in each corner of the stage a group with a distinct character”, explains Ahmad Al Rokh. “The youngest group will be in the middle, and they move between the other groups and aim to create balance as they move.” The play will be an opportunity for the workshop participants to work on a production, that will be performed for adults.