GroundSpring PlayBackTheatre Co.

Introducing one of sp(i)eel's partners...

GroundSpring Theatre is an improvisatory theatre show, where audience members’ real life stories provide the material for the actors to instantly transform into a theatrical event

South African stories are a powerful resource. They bring people together to create a healing dialogue, allowing us to deeply experience our common humanity. This is GroundSpring’s commitment: to challenge familiar perspectives through our storytelling work, so that future possibilities can be imagined, and personal and social narratives can start to transform.

Our aims are to:

•     Offer a platform for dialogue in a variety of contexts.

•     Create a space that supports community building through the sharing of a resource that is common to all of us: our stories.

•     Create a space for the honouring of memories through sharing them with one’s community.

•     Celebrate the storyteller in each of us.

What happens during a show?

During a GroundSpring show, participants are invited to tell true stories from their lives.  These stories may be simple or life- defining, celebratory or painful.  The community or organization will be supported in defining the theme most relevant to be explored within a show. A series of warm-up exercises involves the audience and prepares them to tell stories from their lives. The telling of these stories is facilitated by an experienced conductor, who supports the storyteller to tell the story that both reflects their truth and contributes to the theme of the session.

Professional actors and a musician then play the stories back through improvisation. The stories are performed using a range of theatrical techniques. This dynamic visual experience has a powerful effect on its audience towards developing understanding and mutual respect. The interactive, improvised show is one hour long.

For organisations and corporates, we offer team building, bringing vision and values to life, and support with organizational transitions, diversity and conflict management.

Who are we?

Many South Africans will know of the foundation of our work as the Bonfire Theatre Project, which was established in October 2005.

The project was co-founded by Drama Therapists Paula Kingwill, (who directed the company for 5 years), Heather Schiff (who directed the company for 8 years), Lesley Palmer (the current director) and Music Therapist Chris Wildman. The company is a diverse group of performers including drama therapists, musicians and actors.

Our work is based on the Playback Theatre Model and incorporates aspects of Systemic Constellations, Psychodrama, Theatre of the Oppressed, traditional storytelling and Drama Therapy.

Are you ready to see your story? Feel free to mail us with any questions.

E: T: 082 828 5917

Facebook: GroundSpring Playback Theatre Co. @groundspringtheatreco


The Ground Spring Team

The Ground Spring Team