Steps & Bubble: Intergenerational Collaboration
Having collaborated together for a programme at a leading Big Four accountancy firm, Steps were delighted to work with London Bubble Theatre Company again – this time on an initiative funded by Team London Bridge.
The project was to see if young people from London Bubble could work collaboratively with each other and with professional facilitators from Steps, to create a drama based training concept that corporate businesses would be prepared to pay for.
Robbie Swales and Rachael Joseph ran four afternoon workshops with half a dozen of the young actors from London Bubble. Utilising some of the key techniques used at Steps, the sessions focused on building practical skills such as effective listening, coaching and feedback techniques and basic facilitation. The team also explored creative ideas with the young actors – to develop realistic and engaging scenarios that were reflective of the key issues being discussed.
Robbie and Rachael then worked closely with the young people to create a series of scenarios that would be presented to our sponsors. The theme was the ways in which people create stereotypes in their imagination and the implications of these biases on judgement – with regard to decision making, communication and leadership.
The scenes involved four young people visiting a fictitious corporate organisation, ‘Global Bank’, to see what went on there. Before the visit they were talking amongst themselves, making assumptions such as “It will be full of boring old people” “Why should I go? It’s not relevant for me”, etc. We then used drama to explore the behaviours of the adults within the fictional bank – who held biased views such as ‘Why do I want to meet the young and unemployable of Rotherhithe?”, etc. We then dramatised the moment when these opposing communities met one another. Through interactive theatre, the delegate audience helped each group of individuals to create a positive, respectful dialogue.
We presented this piece of theatre to our sponsors and representatives from London Bubble, Team London Bridge and Steps, on the evening of March 21st. It was a great success and people were quick to praise the power of the collaboration in unearthing some of those deep seated biases that can cause conflict in everyday situations.
Robbie Swales commented; ‘I personally got a lot from this project and I think I learnt as much from the young people as (hopefully!) they learned from me! It was great to work in such a different environment to the Steps ‘norm’ and to see the energy and commitment displayed by these individuals. We had a lot of fun!’
Published April 2012
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