How a university professor found a home behind the scenes at the South Bend Civic Theatre.
“the work that we do with the arts and in the theatre doesn’t just go away. it becomes a part of how we think about the world.”
Dé Bryant is a Professor of Psychology at IUSB and the Director of Social Action Project (SOCACT) whose areas of expertise are international service-learning; interfaith studies; diversity training and consciousness-raising; and qualitative, arts-based research methodologies. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in psychological theory, social justice, world religions, and gender and ethnicity. Through SOCACT, and in collaboration with community partners, she develops and launches community-wide initiatives using the arts, exhibits, spoken word poetry, dance, films, workshops, and demonstrations. In her spare time, she enjoys helping back stage at the CIVIC.
Dé is particularly excited to be involved in the CIVIC’s 10-year August Wilson Project. She helped with Gem of the Ocean and looks forward to the day that the CIVIC can premiere the next play, Joe Turner’s Come and Gone.
HELP US CELEBRATE OUR HOMECOMING
Will you consider a donation to the CIVIC so that people like D can return home?
ABOUT THE HOMECOMING PROJECT
The CIVIC has always pledged to be a light to illuminate the darkness.
But in March, our stage went dark due to the pandemic. We are counting down the days until it is safe to open our doors once more and bring the lights back up on live theatre in our community. There are so many people counting on us to make it happen -- from our patrons to the many people behind the scenes who have found a home at the South Bend Civic Theatre.
The pandemic may have changed theatre temporarily, but we have discovered that the South Bend Civic Theatre has changed lives forever.
Through our HOMECOMING project, we will share the true stories of the many people who have discovered a home at the CIVIC. They've also found acceptance, inclusion, and family -- both on the stage, in the audience, and behind the curtain.
With your help, I hope the South Bend Civic Theatre can celebrate a true HOMECOMING in just a few months.
"Aaron, and the CIVIC, took a chance on me. I don’t know if he knew that he was giving me a second chance at life. I don’t know if he knew he was giving me this opportunity to continue to create. I don’t know if he knew that I thought all of my theatre dreams were over at that point."
"There are so many ways the CIVIC touches the lives of those in the community and to those who take part in any form. And in my case, they really show how much they care about musicians and helping us to raise to the the next level of our talents and commitment to the theatre."
“At that moment, my whole life changed. I can say it was a miracle, being on stage... there was this whole comraderie. It was a lightbulb that went on. All of the sudden, my grades went to honor roll. ”
"Theatre offered these beautiful opportunities to talk about not only autism but also it’s representation, about what community really means, about the difference between awareness and acceptance; to undermine stereotypes and increase understanding."
“Being here in the CIVIC, being here in the building, it just made me happy. It made me feel like this is the place I need to be. This is what I want to be when I grow up."
"It's place where people can express themselves. And I think that, you tell good stories, it'll change people for the better. If you don't have theatre, you're going to silence a lot of voices."
SOUTH BEND COMMUNITY RE-ENTRY CENTER
"I don't even want to think about how my life could have gone if it weren't for the CIVIC. For years, I'd stay bottled up. I kept these walls up and I had this me-against-the-world mentality. The CIVIC knocked down those walls and made me feel like it was OK to open up, to embrace, and to love."
THREE GENERATIONS OF MORANS
"Theatre is what I love, and I love being with a group of people who love what I love. And when we go on stage after months of rehearsals, on opening night – it’s so great to be with those people. And we all’ve been on this journey together. And we’ve seen each other at our height, and sometimes at our lows, and we all come together to make something beautiful."
"The work that we do with the arts and in the theatre doesn’t just go away. It becomes a part of how we think about the world. I like being one of those people in the dark clothing dashing back and forth and making sure everything is running okay – and, I get the opportunity to work with these amazing people and watch them apply their craft."
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403 N. Main St., South Bend, IN 46601