The Hong Kong Drama / Theatre and Education Forum (TEFO) is proud to host our TEFO Drama Education Symposium for 2020/21 on the topic of Digital Applied Theatre Practice and Reflection. From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic until today, applied theatre practitioners have had little choice other than to transform their formerly in-person programs into online interactive video calls in order to keep working. However, we’ve found that online versions of applied theatre cannot entirely replace the in-person experience, and vice-versa - there are crucial differences and unique qualities in both modes of producing applied theatre. As humanity continues to evolve together with technology, TEFO encourages fellow applied theatre practitioners to actively explore the virtual world in all of its richness and its limits, so that we can locate our role in this increasingly technocentric world and further evolve our practice. This year, we have invited an applied theatre scholar from Australia, as well as a digital applied theatre specialist from England to share their experiences together with the colleagues we have annually gathered with here in Hong Kong, so that we can collectively reflect on how we can overcome the challenges we continue to face during this era of rapid and turbulent change.

【Event Details】
Date & Time:
Saturday, March 13, 2021 13:30 - 19:00
Sunday, March 14, 2021 14:00 - 19:30

Platform: Zoom

Entrance Fee:
HKD$250/Full 2-Day Pass, HKD$100/Keynote
HKD$150/Full 2-Day Concession Pass (Only available for students, elderly or any person that requires financial support)

Audience: Local and overseas applied theatre practitioners

Registration Deadline: Until maximum capacity of participants reached

Special Notes:
1) Please note that we will not be providing simultaneous interpretation (SI) services during this Symposium, thus we ask participants to pay close attention to each of the events and what language they will be conducted in.
2) We will not be livestreaming our events to Facebook or Youtube for free, only successful registrants will receive a link to access the Zoom meeting of each event via email and be able to participate.


Symp20-21_Poster by TEFO


【Event Descriptions and Speaker Biographies

【Keynote】Playing with the Enablers: A Case Study of Creativity, Technology and Student Effectiveness

Saturday, March 13th HKT 13:30 - 15:00 
Moderators: Sean Kwan (Board of Directors Chairperson, TEFO)
 *The following event will only be conducted in English.

We will consider how creativity, technology and education intersects with student agency to make learning possible. The pandemic has given rise to some helpful and unhelpful practices to technology and learning and in this presentation we will discuss what constitutes a 'best practice' approach for supporting learners as they engage collaboratively and imaginatively in and with learning. We will discuss the most effective approaches for the design and use of technology in learning. We will extend this understanding by considering a recent case study that used technology as an artistic tool and material for student collaborative creation.

【Speaker's Biography
Professor Michael Anderson is an internationally recognised educational leader. He has taught, researched and published in education, transformation and technology for over 20 years including 13 books and 55 book chapters and journal articles. His international research and practice focus on how the 4Cs (creativity, collaboration, communication and critical reflection) can be integrated using coherent frameworks to make learning meet the needs of 21st Century learners. His newest book is ‘Transforming Education: Reimagining Learning, Pedagogy and Curriculum’ that will be available in May this year.

【Keynote】How to Act Smart: Using C&T's Prospero Technology to Inspire Learning Through Applied Theatre and Digital Technology

Sunday, March 14th HKT 15:30 - 17:30
Moderators: Dr. Au Yiman (Executive Director, TEFO)
*The following event will only be conducted in English.

The twenty-first century is the digital century. COVID-19 has only accelerated our increased dependence on these transformational technologies. In this session C&T will demonstrate its ground-breaking digital platform, Prospero and chart its rapid development and adoption. Drawing on over 30 years of creative practice and pedagogic development, Prospero builds synergies between applied theatre practices and the potential of the internet to facilitate creative learning. This session will explain the genesis of Prospero and demonstrate its functionality, designed for anyone to use. It will give an account of how the pandemic has driven a growth in Prospero, with over 2,000 schools and groups now using the platform worldwide. The session will show the range of content available in Prospero's online library of digital drama workshops, giving examples of how it has been adopted by a diverse range of artists and community groups to expand their work. The workshop will also explore the ethical and curatorial dynamics that underpin the platform and how C&T is working to enable Prospero to meet the challenges faced by our emerging post-COVID world.

【Speaker's Biography】

Paul is the founder and Artistic Director of C&T, based in City of Worcester, England. Paul has driven C&T's work fusing drama, learning and digital technologies for over thirty years, leading a diverse team of artist/educators and projects across the UK and around the world. He has extensive experience teaching applied theatre and digital tech in schools and universities and for 10 years was Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Worcester. He has contributed to numerous books and journals, including the second edition of the Applied Theatre Reader. He is Digital Editor of Research in Drama Education (RiDE). He will be joined in this presentation by Max Dean, Director at C&T. Max is currently studying for his PhD at the Warwick University.

【Online Interactive Workshop】What’s “Same Same, but Different” About Online Applied Theatre? From the Perspective of the Process Drama "The Little Smudges Family"

Saturday, March 13th HKT 15:15 - 16:45
Moderator: Dr. Phoebe Chan Yuk-Lan (Member of the Board of Directors, TEFO)
*The following event will only be conducted in Cantonese

This workshop is mainly about parents with special needs (SEN) children sharing their parenting experience through an online process drama.

How do we facilitate honest conversations online? Are we able to communicate our emotions effectively enough through distanced digital interaction? This is what I hope to explore and discuss further in this workshop. Online events also pose a unique conundrum where talking to real people has now turned into talking to a flat screen, how do we help people with no prior experience of this adapt to this new way of communicating? How do we start performing in-role through Zoom? What do we need to lose, sacrifice and change? Can we really pull off a Process Drama while retaining its essence through Zoom? After half a year of experimenting with this project, Kelvin will be sharing his findings and reflections in this workshop.

【Speaker's Biography】

Kelvin graduated from Griffith University with an MA in Applied Theatre, and is formally certified as a Playback Theatre trainer and actor. He is a professional member of the Playback Theatre International Network, as well as one of the founders of Encounter Playback Theatre. He also founded the Children’s Theatre group, “Little Smudges Theatre”, with his close colleagues. 

【Online Interactive Workshop】Theatre Games Go Digital Exploration

English:Saturday, March 13th HKT 15:15 - 16:45 (Facilitators: Valerie Kwok, Ginny Tam)
Cantonese:Sunday, March 14th HKT 14:00 - 15:30 (Facilitator: Ginny Tam) 
Mandarin:Sunday, March 14th HKT 14:00 - 15:30 (Facilitator: Connie Tang)
*The following event will be held in separate sessions respective to the language it will be conducted in. Please note that the Cantonese and Mandarin sessions run concurrently, so participants can only choose one of the two sessions to attend. Although the event will be held in different languages, the content is the same across all sessions. 

We've always played theatre games when preparing for a rehearsal or theatre workshop. During the pandemic however, applied theatre practitioners have had to re-adapt these games to now be played online. In this workshop, we'll be playing through two theatre games that have been re-adapted for online platforms. Afterwards, we'll switch gears and put our facilitator hats on for a critical discussion about how we can still keep the soul of theatre games alive through distanced digital interaction.

【TEFO Open Space】What Do We Do About Applied Theatre?

3月13日(六)HKT 17:30 - 19:00
3月14日(日)HKT 18:00 - 19:30

We look forward to have an open discussion and sharing on the topic “What Do We Do About Applied Theatre?” with you at the Symposium! If you do have a topic that you’re interested in, please make sure to email us at with the title of your topic, as well as which language(s) you are able to host the discussion in. Hosts will also be responsible for language support in their own Open Space. See you soon!

Open Space Technology is a way of meeting and learning. The process will provide a good platform for communication, interaction, cooperation, innovation and explore good strategies when facing challenges and changes. During the process, participants will feel inspired, activated, and proud of the co-created results of themselves and the entire group. "Open Space" aims to create a platform for mutual discussion, no one has the answer, open to the unknown, with a heart that is always ready to be surprised, bravely expressing their own views, and at the same time being open-minded, listen to what others think. “Open Space” operates on four major principles:

- Whoever comes are the right people
- Whenever it starts is the right time
- Whatever happens is the only thing that could have happened
- When it’s over, it’s over

During the discussion process, the “Open Space” meeting encourages participants to use the “The Law of Two Feet", which means that everyone is responsible for their own learning. You can participate discussion during a certain topic. If you feel that you have not learned anything or think that you have not contributed to this topic, you can use your "feet" and go to another group freely for another discussion or simply listen. At the same time, you can also take a break.

(The text above is based on the Chinese text extracted from: