There is Theatre & Drama taking place in and around us at all times. We just need to become aware that it is taking place and we are also playing various roles on this stage. The day we become aware of the drama inside and outside us, our way of perceiving situations & people will transform.
Theatre has been an influential factor in many people’s lives irrespective of their profession. With the help of Theatre & Arts, creativity can flourish, academics can improve, and means of self-expression can be developed. Participants benefit significantly, not only in terms of exploring the unexplored or hidden ability to act, but also by shedding the inhibitions associated with performing in front of an audience. Theater can be influential in all aspects of life. Participating in theater can stimulate participant’s creativity and thought process. The whole experience of theatre makes people more aware and sensitive towards various issues. It empowers the meek and makes people do away with their reservations.
Learning Theatre & Arts can really bring in a lot to life. Here are the few benefits participants experience during & after the workshops:
1. Get attuned to yourself
Theatre & various forms of Arts help you as an individual to synchronize your mind, body & soul. This synchronization helps you to get more aligned to yourself, your surroundings, people and situations. This alignment is very important to bring in harmony and trust at workplace and in life.
2. Innovative and Creative Skills
Theatre & Arts help you to break your linear thinking pattern and open new avenues when it comes to innovative solutions. This helps participants to become more spontaneous and prompt while being innovative. You learns to pop new ideas promptly when needed and tap into creative zone of your brain.
3. Communication Skills
Many participants find that theatre helps them develop the confidence that’s essential to speaking clearly, lucidly, and thoughtfully.
Acting onstage teaches you how to be comfortable speaking in front of large audiences, and some of your theatre sessions will give you additional experience talking to groups. Oral communication skills are so important to some employers that they often send management trainees to special workshops.
4. Emotional Intelligence
Theatre and other Art forms help to tap into the creative zone of your brain which eventually enhances Emotional Intelligence of the person. EI/EQ helps to raise the levels of empathy, collaboration, harmony, trust and care in the person. The most renowned global companies are looking for enhanced EQ while hiring an employee as this helps them to reach their consumers tapping into their EQ.
5. Creative Problem Solving Abilities
Most people expect theatre students to exhibit creativity in such areas as acting, design, playwrighting or directing, and many companies do recruit creative thinkers. But employers are not always aware that theatre experience also helps you learn creative problem-solving techniques that are applicable to many jobs. Tell them!
The point here is that your creative ability, what you’ve learned about using creative processes to solve problems, can be directly applicable to virtually any job you may have.
While we learn to let go off our fears, inhibitions, anxiety & stage fear, we enter the realm of Empowerment. This empowerment leads to confidence and courage in different areas of our life.
7. Increases Productivity & Effectiveness
Theatre and Arts helps in enhancing various life skills such as working in collaboration, bring in innovativeness, new ideas, trusting teams, owning each other, empowering oneself and so on. These life skills help in raising productivity and effectiveness of the participants & their involvement at the workplace.
8. Willingness to Work in Collaboration
Theatre demands that participants work together in collaboration for the production to success; there is no room for “we” versus “they” behavior; the “star” diva is a thing of the past. Your colleagues will usually let you know when you violate the team spirit of a production.
In theatre, it’s important that each individual supports the others involved. Employers will be pleased to know that you understand how to be a team player.
9. Enhances Ownership
Theatre helps you to bring ownership towards your team members and the Unit as a whole. You don’t have an option but to own. This quality of ownership helps the participant while working in an Organization too.
10. Leadership Skills
As a theatre student, you have many opportunities to assume leadership roles. You may, for example, assist a director or designer and lead other volunteers, serve as a crew chief, or even design or direct a production yourself. In the nuturing environment of theatre, faculty help you learn from mistakes so you become a better leader. Leadership training like this can open the possibility for comparable opportunities in a company that hires you. Can you think of any other major that offers this opportunity?
Theatre training teaches you confidence in yourself. Your accomplishments in theatre show you that you can handle a variety of jobs, pressures, difficulties and responsibilities. You develop a “Yes, I can!” attitude. Of course an employer will treasure that.
Theatre and art forms help in addressing fears and insecurities which are biggest obstacles to self confidence.
12. Enhance Voice, Body Language and Facial Expressions
You learn to enhance your voice pitch, body language and facial expressions. These skills are important while presenting or speaking publicly. Enhanced skills help in raising the confidence level of the person.
13. Enjoyment — “This is Fun!”
Theatre helps us to bring in range of emotions on a daily basis – Laughter, Celebration, Anger, Fear, Happiness, Jealousy, Love, Crying, Sadness, Joy and so on. This roller coaster with your theatre buddies is nothing less than you living your favourite movie character in real life.
It’s experiential, active and real. This is where you actually experience being in the present moment.
14. Time-budgeting Skills
When you’re a theatre participant, being involved in theatre forces you to learn how to budget your time. Time is very crucial at every stage and you needs to schedule your time very carefully as every thing happens on stage at a particular time & it cannot be changed. Good time management skills are enormously important to employers.
15. Promptness and Respect for Deadlines
Tardiness is never acceptable in theatre because it shows a lack of self-discipline, and more importantly, a lack of consideration for others. Being late for a rehearsal or a work call or failing to finish an assigned task on time damages a production and adversely affects the work of many other people. Theatre demands that you learn to arrive on time and meet scheduled deadlines.
That’s a job-skill. Employers appreciate workers who are on time and do their work as scheduled.
16. Aliveness, Awareness and Agility
In theatre you work within the structure of a set of procedures and rules that deal with everything from shop safety to behavior at auditions, rehearsals and work calls. You learn that you must be a “good follower.” Theatre teaches you the importance of rules, a concept that’s valued in any organization.
You don’t have an option but to drop that casual attitude and bring in more aliveness, awareness and agility.
17. Art of listening
We all know how and when to speak. Emphasis of great conversation lies in listening and not just speaking. If you don’t listen, you’re likely to make some major error that will damage the theatre production. Listening happens when one is absolutely tuned with him/herself.
Listening is a skill for any job and an employer will respect your ability to listen and comprehend.
18. Adaptability and Flexibility
Theatre students must be adaptable and flexible. You need to be willing to try new ideas, accept new challenges, and have the ability to adapt to constantly changing situations and conditions. In one production you may be a member of the prop crew; in the next perhaps you’re in charge of makeup, publicity or the box office; in a third production you might have a leading role.
A worker who is versatile and flexible is highly valued to most employers; both traits prove that you are able and willing to learn new things.
19. The Ability to Work Under Pressure
Theatre work often demands long hours. There’s pressure–often, as you know well, a lot of pressure. It’s important that everyone involved with a production be able to maintain a cooperative and enthusiastic attitude under pressure. The ability to remain poised under such tensions in an asset that will help you cope with stress in other parts of your life, including your job.
20. A Healthy Self-Image
To work in theatre, you must know who you are and how to project your individuality. But at the same time, it’s important to recognize the need to make yourself secondary to the importance of a production. This is a tricky balance that, although difficult to accomplish, is a valuable trait that employers treasure.
Theatre demands that you learn how to take charge of your life. More than other students, you are forced to make choices between keeping up with responsibilities and doing things you’d rather do. You learn to govern yourself. An employer will respect that ability.
22. A Goal-Oriented Approach to Work
Many aspects of theatre involve setting and achieving specific goals. In employer’s terms, you’ve learned to be task-oriented and capable of finding practical ways to achieve goals.
23. Focus & Dedication
As you work in theatre you learn to dedicate your very being–to doing your best to create a successful production. There is dedication to that show…to your home theatre…to theatre as an art. You alos need to be focused towards your play, script, character and not get bothered by whats happening in front of you or people around you.
Many theatre students discover that committing oneself to a given task is deeply rewarding. Employers respect workers who have learned the value of dedication.
24. A Willingness to Accept Responsibility
Theatre students sometimes have an opportunity that is seldom given to students in other disciplines–the chance to take on sole responsibility for a special project. Being a production stage manager…a designer…a crew chief…a director. Students with other majors seldom have anything even close to these lessons. You can expect employers to value this unusual ability.
Ask yourself again – How many roles do you play everyday and how well are you playing them?
Dr. Louis E. Catron for the excerpt.