Learning from the Manila trip

On the flight home, students were asked to write down two things they had learnt during this trip: one about drama/theatre and one about a wider issue.

These are their responses.

In terms of drama/theatre, I have learnt:

how to improvise better

how to use voice, movement and levels to make a good performance

how to look at an opportunity and see when to take leadership

new skills for working effectively with new people

that drama isn’t just reading from a script, and that there are lots of other techniques like improvisation

how to enhance my dramatic work by using props in a different way

games that help improve focus and concentration

how to improvise and communicate with the audience

how to use props in an ensemble in a collaborative way

that you can use props for many different purposes

how to mime better and how to personify things

that concentration is the key to better acting

that it is key to trust and listen to others’ ideas in drama

that the more you relax, the less stress will be put onto you: sometimes the simplest ideas can be the best

how to use drama skills and story books to create a piece of drama, and the importance of props and costumes while performing

how not to forget lines when performing on stage

about stand-up comedy and how to do stage fighting.

In broader terms, I have learnt:

that we are very privileged, that anyone can be your friend and that we are all part of different communities

that we can help people by doing great things

to be grateful for all the things I have right now: children from other places barely have anything and yet they still keep that optimistic smile; so should we

that in Hong Kong we are unaware of how the world is around us; that the more fortunate you are, the less respectful you are

that even if you are not wealthy, you can still be happy

that the people who have the least tend to give the most

that a good community is one in which people care for each other

that money and luxuries aren’t the way to find true happiness; the way to find true happiness is in family, love and care

that those with very little money in the world seem to know the true meaning of love and community

to understand better the fact that ‘money can’t buy happiness’

that Filipinos are very good at singing

that you don’t have to be wealthy and should appreciate what you’ve got

that we have to appreciate what we have because people around us who are less fortunate than us seem to smile more than us

that people who are less fortunate can be role models – grateful, caring and helpful

that we are so (so so so…) lucky with what we have

that I can work quite well in groups of people I don’t know

that we need to do more than just donate to charities: we have to physically help support people in need.