Theatre for Development Facilitator
Matthew Hahn is an international theatre director, playwright and theatre for development facilitator, post-graduate with experience of creating, coordinating and implementing theatre projects in the United Kingdom, the United States, East & Southern Africa. He is experienced in co-creating international theatre projects focusing on developing and enabling young people, social cohesion, peace-making and conflict resolution in the Global South & North.
Under lockdown, he was busy adapting his practice for an online world though the facilitating and directing of online plays & workshops for a variety of theatre festivals, community centres, theatres companies and organisations. Recently, he directed a Zoom live theatre performance of Catastrophe featuring Tony Award winning actor John Kani & Jack Klaff for The Peacock Theatre Festival for Civil Liberties. He also created & curates the quarterly Festival of Fleeting Words, an online 24-hour festival which brings together theatre-makers from around the world.
Before the lockdown, he directed two new plays for the South by South East Festival at the Gulbenkian Theatre in Canterbury: Trust, which was developed as part of the Folkestone 48 Play Festival, and imPEACHable, a tribunal theatre piece based on the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.
Currently, he is creative producing Festival of Fleeting Words and re-starting many projects that have laid dormant since March 2020.
As a theatre for development practitioner, he facilitates interactive and participatory theatre projects focusing on social cohesion, peace-making and conflict resolution. His play, The Robben Island Shakespeare, has been performed in the United Kingdom, United States and South Africa; he regularly facilitates ‘Ethical Leadership’ Workshops based on his interviews with former South African political prisoners and selections from ‘The Complete Works of William Shakespeare.’ He is a trustee at Most Mira, a charity which uses applied arts to help to build bridges between divided communities in Bosnia.
From 2008 to 2018, he was a Senior Lecturer at St Mary’s University, London specializing in theatre for development. From 2006 to 2016, he was a training facilitator with Theatre for a Change, a UK charity which utilizes interactive theatre to train teachers and facilitators on the topics of gender equality and sexual and reproductive health. Matthew has degrees in Political Science & Journalism from Indiana University (1995) in the United States and is a graduate of the Goldsmiths College Masters in Theatre Directing programme (2002) in the United Kingdom. He trained with the SITI Company in New York (2000) and with Anne Bogart in Dublin, Ireland (2005). He has also trained with the Cardboard Citizens Theatre Company (2005) in London in their Forum Theatre / Joker Training Programme.
As an artist and social activist, he is drawn to complex political opportunities that allow him to utilize his skills as a theatre director, writer and facilitator to further developmental goals.
© Matthew Hahn 2020