Orla Hasson is an ecl catalyst with a specialism in educational and social theatre. Through her work she supports individuals, organisations and communities to engage creatively and wholly in change making processes. Current assignments include the development of a new national prisons programme with Safe Ground, an educational prison arts charity, delivering a Forum Theatre programme in schools across the Tower Hamlets borough in London, and teaching on the New York University Educational Theatre MA programme. Other regular collaborators include Spare Tyre, London; Smashing Times Theatre Company, Ireland; Towards Understanding & Healing, Derry/Londonderry; and Praxis Consultores and Mercedes Benz, Spain.
After graduating from Trinity College Dublin in 2000, Orla’s initial work centred around peace building projects with communities, peace centres and schools in Northern Ireland and the Republic, including collaborations with Children in Crossfire, the Community Relations Council and UNESCO. In 2003 she co-founded an educational theatre company, DesertFish Productions. Through it she designed and delivered a range of participatory arts programmes allowing leaders, educators and young people, to explore themes of bullying, discrimination, healthy relationships, and to find more inclusive, creative paths through managing difficult dynamics. This work included establishing a long running education programme in the Basque Country.
Orla’s ambition is to engage more agencies responsible for the care of young people, in a whole system approach to creative dialogue, leading to solutions which are reflective, relevant, empowering, inspiring and which open up fields of possibility.
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