Educational Theatre Program Will Support Hurricane Relief in San Juan

NYU Steinhardt News

Educational Theatre Program Will Support Hurricane Relief in San Juan

The Theatre Practices study abroad program is a longstanding partnership between the Educational Theatre graduate program and Puerto Rican artists. This year Prof. Nancy Smithner, program leader and Clinical Associate Professor of Educational Theatre, will adapt the course to support ongoing hurricane relief efforts in San Juan.

The decision to return to Puerto Rico again in 2018 was made in close coordination with local collaborators who have hosted the program for fifteen years. Rosa Luisa Marquez, a theatre artist whose studio is a primary site for the NYU group each year stated that “the NYU students will put [their training] into practice.” Many educational theatre students have experience or plan to pursue work in settings where theatre is used as an outreach tool to communities in need.

Professor Smithner explained, “in the spirit of Applied Theatre, our hope is to work with the Museum of Contemporary Arts, a hub for arts, communication and community exchange, as well as a local youth group and environmental education center.”

Marquez and Smither believe that artists have an important role to play in natural disaster response by energizing recovery efforts and stimulating communication. Marquez said, “the students’ input will be very helpful - they will be witnesses to this reconstruction and active creators in a time of need.”