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Learning Plays – A School of Schools

18/06 - 25/06/2016

Mülheim an der Ruhr

A joint effort of alternative educational institutions as part of Impulse Theater Festival, 2016, Mülheim/Ruhr, June 18–25, 2016.


Learning Plays is intended as a school of schools. Four platforms initiated by artists for knowledge production and exchange move their locations for a week to Mülheim an der Ruhr. Instead of inventing another method for another summer academy, Learning Plays invites four exemplary initiatives to share their practice through practical applications. What are the possibilities and duties of art, activism, theory, and theater in a period of political and social urgency? What organic intellectual practices are currently being lived?


Learning Plays refers on the one hand to the tradition of alternative educational approaches: be it the youth and reform movements of the 1910s, Paulo Freire’s concept of the pedagogy of freedom from the 1970s, or Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak’s current approach to aesthetic education, and refers on the other hand to Bertolt Brecht’s Lehrstück: the idea of a theater without a separation between the audience and actors, an agonistic group situation where one learns to understand political realities and to act accordingly.


In various ways, all four invited initiatives have their own perfomative models of knowledge production and transfer, and are also deeply involved in engaging with current political reality.


While the Silent University turns to refugees and immigrants in the region using various formats, the School of Engaged Art, PAF und die Vierte Welt Studierende, young professionals and everyone interested in collaborative work situations. Participation is only possible in one of the groups, there will be enough opportunity for exchange beyond this. After the six-day workshop, a one-day conference will take place. Participation is only possible for the entire duration of Learning Plays (arrival on June 18, departure June 26).

  • Participating alternative art schools and universities
    • Chto Delat – School of Engaged Art (RUS), PAF – Performing Arts Forum (FR), The Silent University (GRE, JOR, DE, GB, SWE)
    • and Vierte Welt Kollaborationen (DE)
  • Cooperation partners
    • Impulse Theater Festival, Ringlokschuppen Ruhr