The Interplay of Zen and Playback Theater, CC 11/3

With Armand Volkas and Zachary Smith
in the Conference Center

  Sunday, November 3, 9:30 am – 5:30 pm

Zen as Performative Art

This workshop will bring our experience of “Zen as performance” together with Playback Theater, to explore how both disciplines can serve to lessen human suffering.

Zen Mind is most authentically apparent through one’s actions and behavior. Zen monks are often depicted expressing their understanding through the performance of such actions as raising a finger, placing their shoes on their heads, bowing or smiling, as Mahakasyapa did at the twirling of a flower by the Buddha.

Playback Theater

Inspired by the experimental theater movement, psychodrama, and the oral tradition of indigenous cultures, the Playback Theater form is now practiced in over sixty countries. It transforms personal stories into improvised theater pieces, on the spot, using movement, music, ritual and spoken improvisation. Playback Theater creates community and connection among people by honoring the dignity, drama and universality in their stories.

Playback can be an effective means of developing self-expression, self-awareness, empathy, compassion and insight. Participants in this workshop will learn the foundations and subtleties of the Playback Theater form and acquire or refine improvisation and acting skills, all in a playful and supportive atmosphere. As participants share the experience of hearing one another’s personal stories and bringing them to life, they will gain an understanding of how the Playback process helps us reconnect with our intuition and creativity, as well as hone communication skills. No previous theater experience. Shy people are welcome! Come share your story!

Recommended Reading:

Salas, Jo, Improvising Real Life: Personal Story in Playback Theatre, Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company, Dubuque Iowa, 1993.

Fox, Jonathan, Acts of Service: Spontaneity, Commitment, Tradition in the Nonscripted Theatre, Tusitala Publishing, New Paltz, NY, 1994.

Fees: $120; $108 current SFZC members; $96 limited income. Some partial scholarships available.

  • Please bring a bag lunch
  • Fee includes snacks and tea

To Register: Use the Register Online button above (available soon). Or call our toll free number 888.743.9362 or our local number 415.475.9362.

About Registration, Scholarships, and Cancellations