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The theatre helps a child to better understand their own emotions


At the beginning of March, children from several Estonian substitute homes and safe houses visited the Ugala Theatre, in Viljandi, at the initiative of SEB Heategevusfond. On this occasion, they watched the new production of The Snow Queen – an ever-popular story about friendship and love. Prior to the performance, the children participated in an actors’ workshop, after which they met with the actors who had been on stage and handcrafted their own strawberry marzipan.

Visiting the theatre this time were children from family homes in Siimusti, Viljandi, Elva, Kiikla and Tallinn, and children from the Taheva Sanatorium.

Prior to the performance, the children participated in a workshop, which was led by Ugala actress Vilma Luik, who spoke to the children about her job as an actress. Together they discussed how an actor prepares and what skills are required in addition to acting. The children were able to participate in games that they had never tried before: feeling one’s own body, trusting one’s partner and reacting quickly. 

The performance was visually effective, spirited and easily understood by all. Its content and structure differed from the Hans Christian Anderson’s fairy tale, but was very interesting and the actors performed their jobs brilliantly. In the opinion of the children, what was taking place on the stage was incredibly exciting and they followed it all with a fixed gaze and without fidgeting until the end. Following the performance the children took photos with their favourite performers and collected autographs, which was a new experience for some of the children.

In the workshop located in the basement of the Ugala Theatre, the children were able to craft their own marzipan strawberries under the guidance of masters from the nonprofit organisation Bonifatiuse Gild. The children also learned more about the strawberry tradition in Viljandi. Everyone was able to make marzipan strawberries and the results were beautiful. The children were one experience richer. It’s always a great joy to make something with your own hands! 

On the way home, lively impressions were exchanged about who was the coolest character, and everyone praised the novel solution and cool stage design. Once again, the educators admitted that is the different theatre visits that the children who have had contact with this world are always looking forward to with anticipation, since each theatre visit provides a great number of things to think about and offers thrills. And these, in turn, help the children to express their emotions and to better understand themselves and the world that surrounds them.

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