The Big Blog Backlog – Part Five: Breaking out of the cage

<p>Today it's the fifth and final installment of the Big Blog Backlog. Last but no means least is Tracey Spokes, artistic director of the 13th Theatre Co (AKA @13theatre), an inclusive theatre company working with a wide range of people living in the Oxford area. Here she talks about her dislike of stereotypes and what she is doing with her team to overcome them...<p/>

Today it’s the fifth and final installment of the Big Blog Backlog. Last but no means least is Tracey Spokes, artistic director of the 13th Theatre Co (AKA @13theatre), an inclusive theatre company working with a wide range of people living in the Oxford area. Here she talks about her dislike of stereotypes and what she is doing with her team to overcome them.

Thank you Tracey for taking the time to share your thoughts and work with us, we really appreciate it!

Team EbD x

 

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Breaking out of the cage

At the 13th Theatre Co we detest labels and I do not mean fashion labels. I mean the labels that we give to people to categorise or put them in boxes. Unfortunately, we put ourselves into these boxes by trying to fit into social circles or to fit in with the expectations that have been placed on us by other people. Eminem has a song out now called ‘Not Afraid’ with the chorus line of “breaking out of that cage”.

At 13th Theatre Co we believe what is inside a person is more important than the outside and we encourage people to be who they truly want to be and not what society or their peers want them to be.We encourage people to break out of their cage and their boxes. At 13th Theatre Co, we also deal with the social issues of disability, bullying, and self-esteem. Take a child that is being bullied, they are usually bullied by someone who is jealous of them. The bully places a label on their victim and uses it against them. Disabled people are labeled because people do not understand or fear them.

At 13th Theatre Co, we envisage a world where people do not label other people and that people can follow the path in life they were truly meant to follow. Through acting workshops, we enable people to express themselves. People who come to the classes may not want to enter the theatre world but they take from it new skills in which they can express themselves and look at things from different angles.

You may wonder why 13th Theatre Co started, when there are hundreds of theatre companies up and down the country. There are many reasons. The first reason; I was fed up of people believing that they had to become famous to do anything with their lives. The second reason; I have friends with disabilities who’ve been treated with disrespect by some members of the public. The third reason; I love the theatre, music and the arts and I knew this was where I was meant to be. The fourth reason; I love people and I want people to be everything they can be and not what they are told they have to be.

To take the road less traveled may be scary, but the joy of being true to yourself when everyone around you tells you not to be, is great for soul. So go for it!

If the 13th Theatre Co enables people to see what they are capable of, then we will have succeeded in a small way.

 

Kindly written by Tracey Spokes