Community theatre is a type of social work through theatre. NUCLEO (Teatro Nucleo) is exactly this type of theatre which was created in Argentina in the 1980’s and is currently located in Italy. It aims at the community integration through artistic activities such as acting, music, dance, costume and scenic design. It is based on the cooperation among representatives of different generations and on the idea of recovery of collective memory through specific techniques and exercises, the involvement of actors, musicians and other professionals of the performing arts.
In the course of its activities NUCLEO theatre developed a methodological framework for involving adults in education through drama. The projects of the theatre involve both the population and specialists of other domains, such as educators, psychologists, psychotherapists, psychiatrists, and social workers. These categories of professionals have experienced an increasing demand for intervention in difficult social situations that require strengthening the potential of human personality. This kind of projects allow for a broader use of the developed methodology creating favourable conditions for accessing education and motivating adults to get involved in it.
During project meetings, the participants use such work techniques as community songs and rhythm games, exercises of physical expression and dance, principles of scenic and costume design, puppets.
NUCLEO theatre works with such socially vulnerable groups as people with mental disabilities, prisoners, and elderly people. The experience of working with these groups has shown that the common problem shared by their members is low self-esteem. The opportunities to involve the population in the community life and education depend exactly on the solution of this problem.
In one of the projects, the theatre staged a play with prisoners because this is an opportunity for these people to feel free while being imprisoned. It gives them some hope for the future. Another project targets elderly people who learn to express themselves through movement, sound and communication. This project shows the importance of emotions in the learning process. By uncovering their own potential, the participants discover the world anew, which brings them to pursuing the educational path.
Description of the method is prepared in the framework of the project ODEon (No 2016-1-LV01-KA204-022704). The method is presented by Italy.