The Yak Pack Theatre Project 2022 (originally 2021)
In the summer of 2022, The Yak Pack Theatre Project will travel to The Spiti Valley, high in the Indian Himalayas,
to share the joys and benefits of books and story-telling, with a side order of fighting plastic pollution!
The Spiti Valley is part of a ‘tribal’ region of the Indian Himalayas bordering Tibet,
and its remote villages are among the highest inhabited places on earth.
Schools and classrooms are basic in Spiti, and learning by rote is commonplace for the 3000 children living here.
Our own children, by accident of birth, are lucky to have rich and creative opportunities at school in the UK.
The Yak Pack Theatre Project was created to share these opportunities with Spitian children.
Following the success of our visit in 2018,
we will be sharing the joy and drama of story telling
by bringing a book to life as a performance:
"Little Red Riding Hood" is a window into the mind of a reader.
We will take the show to schools and remote rural villages
At the request of local people,
our performance will explore the issue of plastic pollution, so its not quite 'Little Red Riding Hood' as you might expect!
We will combine the performances with litter picks, and host craft workshops with local children to turn found materials into props for the shows.
We'll also be donating story books in English to the school and public libraries, to encourage reading and the love of stories,
and useful resources for learning English.
We have produced an 'illustrate-it-yourself' book of our play, for children to enjoy after our visit, and to resource a creative learning activity for teachers.
We performed 13 shows, to over 1800 people (about 1500 were school children), many of whom had never seen a theatre show before. About 1 in 10 of the population of Spiti saw a performance; about 1 in 3 of the children.
We performed in all the large schools in Spiti, met and chatted to countless teachers and educators, gave out bags of resources to enable creative learning, and booklets of ideas for using drama to inspire interesting and engaging lessons.
We trekked to some of the highest villages on earth, performing for families at the end of the working day, bringing the joy of live theatre to people who had never seen it before.
We performed for hard to reach audiences including retired nuns, student monks and nuns, and people with disabilities