Tuesday, June 14, 2005

The Story of Teen Star Theater Group

The Teen Star Theater Group (TST) is a teen acting troupe which who performs skits and vignettes on various topics which are relevant to violence among young people, such as gang, abusive relationships, violent behavior, family abuse, emotional, physical and verbal abused.

The Teen Star Theater consists of African American youth from the age of 13 to 18 that live on the westside of Chicago. Out of the youth group, there are two teen leaders. The youth are trained to answer questions about teen violence issues. The teen leaders serve as co-facilitators in the training sessions. The TST group is a way to present prevention education on teen violence topics from teens to other teens throughout the Chicago area. They perform in schools, local libraries, churches, and youth organizations. Their message is to Stop Violence Among Teens.

The Teen Theater was started by Prevention Force Family Center, a nonprofit community orgnaiztgion in Chicago, Illinois in January of 2003. Because of the escalation of gangs, shootings, weapons and violence found in community and school throughout the country today, it is evident that many youth feel violence is the way to control and resolve any disagreement. Throughout America youth violence is on the rise and there is a great need to address this through programming that is youth oriented and offer some alternatives to using violence to resolve conflicts and disagreements to other youth.

Therefore, The Teen Theater group develop plays and skits that addresses the issues of gang violence, abusive relationships, violent behavior, physical, emotional, and verbal abuse, and tobacco/drug/alcohol use.

The plays and skits are designed to increase teen’s awareness of all types of violence. The play assist teens in identifying the early warning signs of toxic relationships and inappropriate violent acts as a way to resolve conflicts. The plays or skits has comparative scenarios that will allow the audiences to learn new ways to cope with these deleterious behaviors. There are informal discussion between the audience and cast after each performance to discuss the plays or skits and the methods taught. The audience recieve violence prevention handouts, brochures and postcards.

The primary goal of the plays or skits is to reduce and prevent teen violence. The objective of the play is to give teens alternative skills and mechanisms to resolve conflicts. The group message is to stop violence among teens.

Next Performance is the: Your Life, Your Choice Play

Your Life, Your Choice play is based on two friends who have to decide to join or not join a gang. They lived in a community where being apart of a gang is normal. Yet, the journey they take is not normal. The play goals are to:

· To keep youth from joining gang in their community.
· To educate youth about the dangers of gangs and the possible circumstances involved with gang criminal activities
· To educate parents about gang activities and the violence that youth face every day in their commnity.
· To provide alternatives for youth who are currently in gangs.

Date: Saturday January 28, 2006
Time: 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Where: Douglass Library Branch
3353 W. 13th
Chicago, IL 60623

Everyone Welcome

For more information call (773) 863-5694