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Collective Creation

Term to define the process by which a group of theatrical artists working together create a work. The group may include simply actors but may also include a director, a playwright and designers.

The process may begin as a community project in which the theatre artists interview participants in historical events or research the subject, returning to fashion - through song, anecdote or scene - a finished work. Many of the country's notable works were created in this way, especially Paper Wheat, seminal in the form.

Though collective creation was most popular in the late 1960s and the 1970s, there are still companies and theatre schools who work along the lines (SIN Productions, Montreal). Among companies who have created important collective creations are Toronto Workshop Productions/TWP (Ten Lost Years), Theatre Passe Muraille (1837: The Farmers' Revolt), Nightwood Theatre (This is For You, Anna), Stacey Christodoulou's The Other Theatre (Carlos in Therapy among others).

Outside of the major centres collective creation is still used to help new companies approach the community they wish to serve (Theatre & Company and their 1988 This Side Up, 4th Line Theatre and1993's The Moodie Traill and Theatre Kingston (Princess Street: The Great Divide)).

Last updated 2006-10-25