February 2011 Newsletter
GONG XI FAI CAI!
WELCOME TO THE YEAR OF THE RABBIT
In celebration of the Year of the Rabbit, and in typical ‘rubber time’ mode, we are a little late with the newsletter, but here’s what’s been happening!
As promised last month, February saw the arrival of Hong Kong based artists Grad Leung to facilitate an intensive week of puppet-making at the Ti-Ratana Children’s Home. 30 kids were whizzed through a week-long crash course in mask and puppetry making, culminating in a show for the rest of the home and a performance at Lifest at MAP in Solaris Dutamas. The performance consisted of some frenzied tribal drumming on upturned buckets at the giant puppets swayed and us likely lads danced in their colourful masks. It was most splendid!
Many thanks to Fallen Leaves Soon, Le-boi, Jade Ong and new volunteers Rachel Lee, Jean Hooi and Su Fong for all their help and assistance. Also, many many thanks to Lai Chee and the good people at Nyoba Kan for putting us in contact with the delightful Grad. We hope to see him again soon!
UNHCR Vocational English Module
February also saw the completion of a 48-hour course in Vocational English, in collaboration between Fallen Leaves UK, the Harvest Training Centre and the UNHCR. 25 young adults from the stateless and refugee community, comprised of a diverse ethnic representation of Myanmar, Sri Lanka and beyond, took part in an innovative and groundbreaking pathway of English and vocational skills development. Featuring beatboxing, poetry, forum theatre and more traditional English teaching skills, this course was a huge success and very popular with the participants. It culminated in the Harvest Centre’s first ever beatboxing and rapping championship and a session of forum theatre exploring problems of communication in the workplace.
Check some more photos here. Watch this space for more detailed reportage and videos from the sessions!
WORD SOUND HAVE POWER RETURNS!
And from the overseas, we are thrilled by the turnout and the raucous, folk-punk vibe of our Word Sound Have Power benefit night in Elephant & Castle at the end of January. Many thanks to everyone who turned up and to all the performers. WSHP3 will be back in May, featuring the prodigal return of Furious George MC, currently in Malaysia exploring the possibilities of poetry and performance with the socially excluded communities there.
And in the coming months …
The Fallen Leaves Social Centre in Batu Arang is pleased to announce it has been rejoined by FL members Lokman and Ezekiel, and will be commencing its tour of Malaysia performing forums and workshops with different communities in March. We have a booking in Kluang coming up and a workshop with juvenile offenders in a centre near KL. We shall report as it develops!
As ever, if you want to get involved, email to email@example.com (UK)
All enquiries, responses, dialogues and criticism happily accepted.