Interactive Theatre Troupe
The KU Interactive Theatre Troupe is a group of actors, writers and directors dedicated to using improvisational theater and performance to help diverse groups deal civilly with challenging issues about difference. ITT performers create multi-media and interactive performance that that can help the KU and local Lawrence communities engage issues of diversity and equity. Using Forum Theater, improvised performance, film, sketch comedy and Hip-Hop Theater, undergraduate performer/researchers write, perform, produce, and direct live and recorded performances using a wide range of improvisational tactics.
ITT is provides outlets on campus for faculty, staff and students to have opportunities to engage in “Difficult Discussions,” which is a spin-off of the national model Difficult Dialogues. A difficult discussion can be an encounter among people with differing opinions, beliefs, perspectives or worldviews within our offices, classroom, labs, studios and workspaces across the KU community. Other difficult discussions find people at a loss as to how they can talk about race, ethnicity, class, gender, sexuality, and disability. ITT provides a safe forum to have such discussions.
ITT Program Director, Dr. Nicole Hodges Persley, expanded the reach of ITT after its founder, KU Theater professor Delores Ringer, retired from the project. Dr. Hodges Persley is a theater professor that specializes in race and ethnicity in contemporary performance and improvisation practice and theory. Her research interests are deeply engaged in ITT as she guides students to use improvisation as a tool to build cross-racial and ethnic coalitions.
The Office of Diversity and Equity support the ITT program. The troupe is available for to visit classrooms, training sessions, workshops and other community venues to perform live or to discuss ITT films created to incite dialogue about these issues. For more information contact Professor Nicole Hodges Persley.