theatre-maker training & development

Since 2007, JTC has conducted four successful multi-year capacity training programs for previously disadvantaged youth. These programs have produced 23 proficient theater makers and facilitators, equipping them with performing arts skills like puppetry and mime, as well as fostering leadership abilities in directing and writing. Many of these graduates have remained dedicated to JTC, while others have embarked on establishing their own theatre organizations or pursuing careers in the industry.

Theatre Makers are trained in and participate in a wide range of theatre making skills such as:

Development of new shows

By devising theatre from a collectively agreed point of departure each trainee takes part in developing material based on African folktales. The content of the work is developed through discussion and improvisation. The director is challenged to turn the research material into theatrical possibilities. Everyone participates in script writing, design of prop, masks, puppets, costumes, and musical composition.


Theatre maker trainees are cast in the various roles for the shows that will be performed and are involved in rehearsals and the performances, learning: performing arts skills; prop and costume making including masks, puppets, sets and costumes that are practical and fully integrated into the performance; stage management, and audience interaction through trial performances that teaches them how to evoke responses from the audience, how to get the audience involved and to invite members of the audience to participate in the production.


All trainees learn to facilitate the post-performance theatre workshops with children. Some will go on to learn to make theatre works with children and use this as a training ground to become theatre directors. Interested trainees learn to facilitate Creative Arts Clubs by shadowing the facilitator and those who show an aptitude may be placed as the facilitator at new Creative Arts Clubs as they are created. Trainees will gain theoretical and practical experience in running skills development workshops at a school level.


An important aspect that trainees learn is self-management, including concepts such as: goal setting – trainees learn to set realistic goals for themselves within their professional career outlook; time management – devising timelines enabling trainees to attain their goals; computer literacy – word, excel and the internet.

Over time trainees may need to manage productions, a theatre company, Creative Arts Club, or other arts related organisation, so the training also includes; budgeting – creating realistic cost evaluations for their projects and learning how to manage these budgets; marketing and fundraising – including creative marketing, relationship building, criteria assessment and proposal writing; organizational Management – how to run an effective organization, including, finance, human resources, and administration; monitoring and evaluation – the audience reactions will be monitored through feedback forms and interviews and used to feedback to the trainees.

Funded by:

  • National Lotteries Commission
  • Albert Wessels Trust
  • The Learning Trust