|A Comparative Analysis of the Efficacy of a Once-Off Forum Theatre Intervention|
|Written by Mangenda, Hannah|
A Comparative Analysis of the Efficacy of a Once-Off Forum Theatre Intervention and Weekly Ongoing Workshops used by DramAidEAbstract
The methodology used in communication for development has changed in the last 30 years from a linear top-down approach to a more inclusive participatory model of communication as dialogue in which ideally all stakeholders are involved (Parker, 1997). During the same period the related field of Entertainment-Education (EE) has undergone similar changes in its audience approach (Tufte, 2005). One aspect of EE is the use of drama for social purposes which is practiced by DramAidE, a “project [which] uses drama methodologies to critically engage young people to communicate effectively about issues relating to sex, sexuality and HIV/AIDS” (DramAidE.co.za). DramAidE currently has two projects with very differing levels of audience participation. The one consists of a Forum Theatre play held at many schools for a once-off intervention and the other, an ongoing series of weekly workshops with the same students participating each time. In this paper I examine how drama is used in each case and compare how different levels of the participants’ involvement in the interventions affect their life style choices. This analysis helps to draw conclusions about the effectiveness of each of the two interventions examined according to DramAidE’s stated goals “to equip young people with increased knowledge about HIV/AIDS and the skills to inform and communicate with others about sexual health” and “to create a network of peer educators that practice safer sex and other positive behaviours, and initiate a social movement that promotes healthy lifestyles” (DramAidE.co.za).