"The most important thing in theater is to get along well in the group. Otherwise it is impossible to work." Lara
"When one wants to create bonds, the children must do something together, and that something must be of true quality. Speeches aren’t worth much. One can be full of ideas about solidarity and respect for others. But this is a question of doing, not of discussing." A mother
To put oneself at risk in a personal expression in the presence of others, the child needs total confidence. “Here we don’t make fun of one another”. This is the golden rule at the International Theatre Academy for Children. In the beginning, it is tempting to judge others by their appearance and to criticize them, but they learn, thanks to theatre, to mutually discover one another and to create a troop united by confidence.
"At the Academy the adults help us to be kind to one another." Bérénice
An attitude of kindness between adults is the first condition for inviting the children to practice the same kindness toward one another. Adults do not have the right, and at any rate it is useless, to demand of a child what they do not first demand of themselves. It is necessary for the Academy to create an educational and artistic community in which all members are animated by the same intentions.
Theatre is an art of unity. On the stage all elements should contribute to the same objective: direction of actors, music, costumes, décor, lighting, setting. Thus the creation of a play requires that each one get beyond his or her individualism. All participants must express their intuitions to the others, listen to all that the others have to say, and be ready to abandon their own ideas in order to discern the action to be set up, and so become an ensemble of creators.
The actual life setting has a determining effect on these relationships. This is why the criteria for choosing the settings are not only practical but esthetic as well. In a beautiful setting, life in collectivity, a “de facto interdependence,” can be transformed into a life of family, of community, into “intentional solidarity”.
Where children are living together, little attention can be given to such prosaic moments as getting up and going to bed, meals, ball games, whereas formative and artistic value is given only to moments passed in the workshops. The attention we give to ordinary daily life restores its full value and beauty. There are no little things or big things; whatever humans live is sacred. The stage is not a poetic parenthesis in life; it expresses life, and life becomes poetic in this contact.