About the Project

The mission of the project is to use theatre training and storytelling to help make Iowa a better place for LGBT youth to grow up. Make it Better, Iowa is a collaboration between Working Group Theatre and Iowa Pride Network with support from Prairie Lights Bookstore and Hotel Vetro. It is divided into 3 parts. Read about them below to find out how you can be a part of Make it Better, Iowa.

IOWA CITY— Working Group Theatre teamed up with The University of Iowa Center for Human Rights, Iowa Pride Network, Prairie Lights Bookstore, and The Hotel Vetro to present Make it Better, Iowa on Sunday, April 17th at 4pm in the Hotel Vetro’s Grand Ballroom. The event featured a theatrical performance, personal storytelling, and music from The Quire, Eastern Iowa’s LGBT chorus.  One of the highlights of the event was a skyped-in appearance by Dan Savage, who talked about the release of “It Get’s Better” a collection of the video essays that were created in response to the suicides of gay teens. Check out the pictures below and the video of the Dan Savage interview.

Part Three: The Event


Part One: The Training

The project began the last week of March with theatre training for WGT Company members with Dr. Karen Mitchell, a Theatre of the Oppressed/Forum Theatre specialist from the University of Northern Iowa. WGT met for two half-day training sessions with Dr. Mitchell to develop our skills at using Forum Theatre to affect change.  The company included Producing Director Martin Andrews, Associate Artistic Director Jennifer Fawcett, Artistic Director Sean Lewis, Kristy Hartsgrove, John Kaufmann, Jefri Palermo, Saffron Henke, and Kate Krohn.

Part Two: The Workshop

April 2nd: 9am-12pm, 1:30pm-4:00pm - South Room, IMU

WGT and UICHR offered a free public workshop, open to anyone who worked with LGBT youth and was interested in using theatre as a tool to combat oppression and facilitate discussion.  Led by Dr. Karen Mitchell with assistance from WGT the workshop involved more than 20 participants ranging from high school students, teachers, administrators, and others.

Make it Better, Iowa

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