Seniors share stories of their youth with school kids in Theatre Lab's Life Stories program
"And to find out, which I never suspected…that these are all individuals and they have wonderful stories. It just delighted me. These people are alive. I’ll never look at them the same way again.”
Seniors participant

Seniors

Since 2000, Life Stories has served more than 200 seniors, drawing on research into the benefits of "reminiscence therapy."

Theatre Lab instructors lead seven-week classes that introduce acting and presentation skills to help older people shape their memories into stories. The class culminates in a public performance for peers and others in the community. Instructors encourage participants to recall sometimes rare memories stirred by a common item, such as a thimble, or a question such as “Can you describe the first kitchen you ever remember eating in?”

 

“I love to tell stories and what it has done for me is given me an audience; somebody that will listen to me.”

- Participant, Life Stories for Seniors
 
Drama therapy for seniors, facility staff and participants tell us, increases mental acuity, enhances the elderly’s relationships with those around them, bolsters self-esteem, and is just plain fun.
 
The Theatre Lab is currently partnering with Stoddard Baptist Church at Washington Center for Aging Services.
 
LIFE STORIES ACROSS THE GENERATIONS
The Theatre Lab organized an innovative intergenerational Life Stories program pairing middle schoolers and seniors in assisted living facilities. Seniors told stories of their own adolescence and middle schoolers dramatized them using Playback Theatre techniques.