ASSITEJ Lithuania, which has been operating in Lithuania since 2001 and currently unites 33 members – performing arts organizations creating for children and youth, today starts implementing the project “Theater Travels to Children” funded by the Lithuanian Culture Council. The project, which has been running since 2008, was initiated by Violeta Podolskaitė, president of ASSITEJ Lithuania, in order to ensure that every Lithuanian child, regardless of where he or she lives, has the opportunity to experience theater. “If young spectators can’t go to big cities to meet the theater, the theater can come to meet them,” said Violeta Podolskaitė, the project manager.
This year, the project performances will visit children and youth in nine areas of the Samogitian region: in Kelmė, Rietavas, Tytuvėnai, Kuršėnai, Skuodas, Telšiai, Akmenė, Rėkyva and Naisiai. The project, which starts on April 12, will run for more than two months until June 21. During it, fifteen members of ASSITEJ Lithuania will perform performances of various performing arts, from drama and puppet theater to dance and circus performances for children and youth from 0 to 18 years of age. Eight theaters from Vilnius are participating in the project: Rainbow Theater, Open Circle Theater, Theater Keistuoliai, Dansema Dance Theater, Paršiukas Ikaras Puppet Theater, Table Theater, Labaiteatras, No Shoes Theater. Kaunas is represented by the Kaunas State Puppet Theater and the Baltic Circus, Alytus – Alytus City Theater and Alytus Puppet Theater “Aitvaras”, Klaipėda – Clown Theater Studio “Dulidu”. The Kelmė Small Theater and the Naisiai Summer Theater will perform from Samogitia itself. Project coordinators Dalia Storyk and the director of the Kelmė Small Theater Algimantas Armonas promise that the abundance of spectators is guaranteed, because the young spectators miss the theater, performances and live communication with artists. During the project, the seminar “Documentary Theater and its Creation” for young people from the age of 14 will be hosted by Raimondas Klezys, Member of the Board of ASSITEJ Lithuania, Head of the No Shoes Theater and actor.
There is also a novelty in this year’s project – cooperation with the Association of Performing Arts Critics, which aims to increase the visibility of theater for children and young people in society. It is planned that the critics belonging to this association will travel to the places of the Samogitian region where the project performances will be shown and will write reviews of the observed performances, which will later be published on the social networks and social media of the project partners.