ASSITEJ Zimbabwe Celebrates Theatre For Young Audiences

Zimbabwe will from today (Monday) commemorate Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA), a celebratory event running until March 25.

The celebrations, which are an important part of the arts sector, introduce children and young people to the world of performing arts as audiences or children performing for other children. 

Running under the theme, ‘Take a child to the theatre OR take the theatre to the child!’, the week-long commemorations will be showcased by ASSITEJ (Association of Theatre for Children and Young People) Zimbabwe under the ASSITEJ International umbrella countrywide.

Activities such as theatre performances, symposiums, workshops and poetry have been lined up to celebrate this day by ASSITEJ Zimbabwe members led by Ms. Chipo Basopo, the chairperson of ASSITEJ Zimbabwe’s interim committee. 

“On March 20th 2023, we recognise the artists in theatre and performance for young audiences as essential workers; making a difference in the lives of children wherever they are and with a deep and specialised knowledge of their audiences.

“Theatre and performance for young audiences are distinct in their approach; valuing children and young people as discerning audiences, participants, and contributors to culture, with the right to experience the arts and to have freedom of expression,” Sue Giles, ASSITEJ International president said.

She said children needed to take part or be taken to theatre, an aspect which will build a firm foundation for them to build their resilience and confidence in theatre and performance.

“Giving space, place, and respect to the imaginations of young people gives them foundations on which to build resilience and confidence. Theatre and performance make a difference; human-to-human contact, the spread of ideas, the sharing of hope, and the explosion of joy. It’s through theatre and performing arts that we recognize the common ground between us and the horizon becomes wider.

“Sometimes we cannot take children to the theatre buildings. Sometimes there is no such place. Sometimes physical, economic, geographical or social barriers make it impossible. Yet every time our global community gathers to discuss or share, whether online or in person, we become more aware of the variety of ways artists and creatives make theatre and performance possible for young audiences in their contexts.

” Sue reiterated that children should be exposed to technology which can enable them to have global connections which bring out extraordinary stories.

“Because of our global connection online and at our gatherings, we have seen and heard extraordinary stories of struggle, courage, and determination and acknowledge all the different forms our creative community uses to reach further, meet the need, and create greater access…we need to be open to all the diversity of art-making that our global network offers and to celebrate the innovation that comes from limitations, challenges, and specific contexts.

“Below are events to celebrate the International Day for Theatre for Children and Young People organised by ASSITEJ Zimbabwe members :


20 March: 2pm – Theatre for early years workshop by Zimbabwe Theatre Academy

21 March: 2pm – Puppetry Workshop by Bob Mutumbi

22 March: 2pm – Spoken Word Session

23 March:  2pm – Dance workshop by Sekuru Enock Majeza and dance group performance

24 March – Early Years Theatre Out Reach Performance by Cedrick and Ronald

25 March: 10am -CHIPAWO world Theatre Day Children’s Performance.

All activities happening at Theatre in the Park, Harare Gardens


CTD – I will Wait -9am – Bulawayo Theatre.

22 March: 11 am Umkhathi live performance at St. Pius Early Learning Centre

24 March: 2 pm Umkhathi, Bambelela and Langelitsha Arts. Assitej Day celebrations. Salukazi Arts Centre, Njube

One of the primary aims of ASSITEJ International, headquartered in Sweden, is to unify practitioners all over the world and to strengthen the possibilities for young audiences everywhere to experience what theatre and performance offer.  Nhau/Indaba

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