The Nova Scotia High School Drama Festival


Check out the extra resources from our Presenting Partners!

We are very grateful to our Post-Secondary Presenting Partners for generously providing additional resources to teachers to enrich the theatre education in your classroom!

These resources were only available to teachers during DramaFest – with the exception of the DramaFest Lecture: Why Theatre Matters by Dr. Michael Devine, which you can view below. 

DramaFest Lecture: Why Theatre Matters
by Dr. Michael Devine from Acadia University

In this video, specially recorded for DramaFest 2021, Dr. Michael Devine from Acadia University takes us through why theatre isn’t such a bad thing to pursue as a profession. He makes his argument by telling the story of theatre throughout Western history, its importance to a rich and vibrant society and culture, and how it can be used to fight for justice and hold power to account. 

Please enjoy this special lecture from Dr.  Michael Devine and share it with your class. We hope that this incredible lecture gives you are your class additional asynchronous learning opportunities, as well as plenty of new insights to discuss and debate. 

Play Video
  1. Dr. Devine says that “theatre is political, even when there are no politics in it”. What does he mean by this? Do you agree? Why or why not?
  2. Throughout the lecture, Dr. Devine tells many stories of when theatre and political action collided. Which of these examples stood out to you and why? 
  3. Dr. Devine makes the argument that theatre is about identity. Why do you think this is? Can you think of any examples in this lecture to support your point? 
  4.  A more recent example of theatre protests was the controversy surrounding the production of Behzti (Dishonour) by Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti in Birmingham, UK in 2004. What do you think? Should theatre and its subject matter ever be restricted or guided by religious groups, political groups or other groups in a society?
  5. Augustus Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed creates theatre in a unique way: through direct community involvement. It is their stories that are told on the stage by members of that same community. It tells local stories and is made collectively and spontaneously by the “spect(actor)s”. Think about what it would be like to be a “spect(actor)” at a play. How would that change your experience as an audience member? Do you think you would like it? Would you want to go to the theatre and be a “spect(actor)”? Or would you rather watch a play normally from a comfortable seat in the dark? 
  6. Dr. Devine tells the story the Velvet Revolution in what was then called Czechoslovakia (now the Czech Republic and Slovakia). How did people use the theatre to stage a revolution? Why do you think theatre was an effective political tool in this revolution?  

Do you want to learn more from Michael Devine?

You can register for a Professional Development Masterclass with Michael as he takes you through his method for alternative theatre creation, BoxWhatBox.