The registered non-profit organisation აიწონა დაიწონა (AITSONA DAITSONA) was founded in 2017. The organisation focuses on establishing and promoting new emancipatory theatre for children and young people in Georgia. Founding members are Mareike Wenzel (director) – actress and director from Berlin/Germany, who has been working on theatre and social arts projects in Georgia for many years, as well as Mariam Gabritchidze (Project Manager), Natia Kavtaradze (Project Coordinator) and Lili Mamulashvili (Educational Programme Coordinator), actresses and artists from Tbilisi/Georgia.
Following the example of the renowned GRIPS Theater in Berlin/Germany, the group performs plays that deal with the social reality of children and young people and their experiences and struggles. The plays reflect and analyse problems young people are facing in society and show possible ways of change; the plays are encouraging and empowering and at the same time of course a lot of fun.
Aims and Mission
AITSONA DAITSONA is an organisation that aims at empowering children and young people, addressing socio-political issues, such as discrimination, gender, economical, environmental and currently occurring problems with the means of theatre and arts. The main focus of the organisation is the work with theatre and arts as a tool for communication, empowerment and education. In contrast to existing groups working on these issues, the focus AITSONA DAITSONA is on working with children and young people on eye-level. This means taking their ideas, problems and interests seriously and finding creative ways of dealing with them together.
The aim is to reach children and young people who normally don’t have access to many cultural events and theatre performances with a special focus on the regions. Theatre is used as a tool for education and empowerment. The performances are followed by discussions and workshop sessions, exploring the issues of the plays. This is another important aspect of the project and does not only address young people but also professionals from the educational sector. They can observe and learn, how theatre pedagogical methods can be used and integrated into educational work.
AITSONA-DAITSONA sees theatre as a social event that can empower groups and give people a voice who are often not heard. By watching performances together and seeing scenarios that are related and close to the lives of the audience, they realise that they are not alone with their problems. The theatre performances are not about creating or enhancing fears but about giving hope and inspiration for change and creating solidarity. Theatre is used as a tool for education and empowerment, to discuss social issues in a creative way. The importance of theatre and theatre pedagogics in education is promoted and made visible.
In summer 2017, AITSONA DAITSONA was granted a small fund from DVV International to tour the plays „სახლობანა“ on gender inequality, domestic violence and labour rights and „შავი ნისლი“ on the topic of environment and pollution to the 10 DVV International regional centres. Additionally, the group was showing the plays at schools, festivals and community centres. In October 2017, AITSONA-DAITSONA hosted a workshop in Tbilisi together with Volker Ludwig from Grips Theater. The workshop aimed at theatre practioners and people from the educational sector. It was addressing different aspects of theatre in education and how to use theatre in an educational context.
2018, saw the premiere of AITSONA DAITSONA’s first devised play „თამაში“. This play was based on research and interviews at school pupils and students from all over Georgia. They were asked about problems at school and difficulties in finding your own way and taking decisions within the educational system. From all these interviews and research the team devised a play that was then toured through the regions of Georgia. Following the play workshops took place, where the audience was invited to voice their opinion and create a new vision for schooling and learning.
Additionally, Mariam Gabritchidze and Mareike Wenzel of AITSONA-DAITSONA were travelling to the 10 DVV International regional centres, conducting workshops on the theatre in education, conflict management and how to use theatre as a tool in education for the local teachers and socialworkers. More than 100 teachers and socialworkers attended the workshop sessions.
Mareike Wenzel, director of Aitsona-Daitsona joined the conference „On the Child’s Side“ marking the 50th anniversary of GRIPS Theater Berlin, presenting the work of AITSONA-DAITSONA and discussing the future of children’s theatre and the promotion and implementation of children’s rights.
Tamar Mepe Ave 11, Tbilisi 0112, Georgia
Legal Form: Non-Entrepreneurial (Non-Commercial) Legal Entity
Identification Number: 404533260
Registering Authority: LEPL National Agency of Public Registry Tbilisi, Georgia