Applied Theatre with Youth is a collection of essays that highlight the value and efficacy of applied theatre with young people in a broad range of settings, addressing challenges and offering concrete solutions.

This book tackles the vital issues of our time—including, among others, racism, climate crisis, gun violence, immigration, and gender—fostering dialogue, promoting education, and inciting social change. The book is divided into thematic sections, each opening with an essay addressing a range of questions about the benefits, challenges, and learning opportunities of a particular type of applied theatre. These are followed by response essays from theatre practitioners, discussing how their own approach aligns with and/or diverges from that of the initial essay. Each section then ends with a moderated roundtable discussion between the essays’ authors, further exploring the themes, issues, and ideas that they have introduced.

With its accessible format and clear language, Applied Theatre with Youth is a valuable resource for theatre practitioners and the growing number of theatre companies with education and community engagement programs. Additionally, it provides essential reading for teachers and students in a myriad of fields: education, theatre, civic engagement, criminal justice, sociology, women and gender studies, environmental studies, disability studies, ethnicity and race studies.

part 1|26 pages

Engaging community

part 2|26 pages

Bridging divides

chapter 4|10 pages

Seeing plays and writing plays

Pathways to understanding

chapter 5|5 pages

“Telling our own story”

Using digital storytelling to re-design education with Texas and Alaska youth

part 3|28 pages

Reframing narratives

chapter 7|9 pages

Neighborhood bridges

Rehearsing transformations in the classroom and beyond

chapter 8|5 pages

Room to play

An exploration of resources and youth agency

part 4|26 pages

Fostering agency

part 5|26 pages

Celebrating identities

chapter 13|9 pages

Queering applied theatre

Working with LGBTQ youth to dismantle systems of oppression

chapter 14|5 pages

Rehearsing for life

HOPE IS VITAL, FYI, sexuality education for youth

part 6|26 pages

Embodying heritage

part 7|26 pages

Promoting equity

chapter 19|9 pages

Our story

How Nicu’s Spoon fosters representation, access, and inclusion for youth with disabilities

chapter 20|5 pages

Inclusive theatre as drama therapy

chapter 21|5 pages

Where we do the things they think we can’t

The Pegasus Ensemble

part 8|26 pages

Amplifying voices

chapter 22|9 pages


A theatre company of imagination, hope, life skills, and quality art for justice-involved young men

chapter 23|4 pages

The value of process

Creating theatre with incarcerated youth

chapter 24|5 pages

Voices beyond bars

Art as a means of self-expression for incarcerated youth

part 9|28 pages

Igniting activism

chapter 26|6 pages

The voters are coming

Moment Work and the national #HereToo Project

chapter 27|6 pages

Speak About It

Social scripts for consent and healthy relationships