Teatro Dell’eco brings organics edutainment’
Tuesday, Apr 04, 2017 06:00 am
The communication strategy for the Town of Cochrane’s organic collection program takes to the stage with two performances of Teatro Dell’eco’s original production Dreaming Alberta April 12 and 13.
Knowing Cochrane is home to a diverse population with many interests, the town’s waste and management manager Fabrizio Bertolo said this initiative is one of many tools the town is using to get information on the organics program out to as many people as possible.
“You can’t use only one tool to reach everybody,” he said. “(A play) is something that has never been done before.”
Teatro Dell’eco has its roots in Italy when Daunia Del Ben founded the company in 2007. Moving to Canada in 2012, she opened the company once again in Edmonton in 2013 before relocating to Cochrane in 2016.
With a long history working in “edutainment” theatre, she said she brought an artistic style to Dreaming Alberta that not only spoke to the importance of recycling but also brought out the character of community coming together.
“We wanted a message that touches the hearts of people (and) encourages them to believe in this project and this program,” she said.
Hoping to represent the diversity of Cochrane, the plot of Dreaming Alberta finds a Filipino woman new to Canada, a First Nations Elder, a Franco-Albertan woman and a young cowboy coming together in the forest.
All of the characters have been drawn to this spot by a dream about a girl in danger, Del Ben said. Coming from such different cultures, backgrounds and ways of thinking, adds conflict for the characters, she said, as they try to figure out why they are there.
“Everyone wants to do things their own way without listening to the other,” Del Ben said.
As the story progresses, she said the characters begin to realize the visions may not be about a girl but rather Mother Nature asking for help and telling each character how to do so.
“Waste organic collection is a wonderful way to do it,” she said. “It’s a wonderful beginning for Mother Earth.”
Though Dreaming Alberta is simplistic in its execution, Del Ben said the company has implemented the use of shadow puppets and projection alongside conventional acting styles as well as original music composed by Stoney Nakoda musician Helmer Twoyoungmen.
The set is also completely designed with materials saved from a landfill, she added, such as paper and plastic bottles and bags.
Dreaming Alberta takes the stage at the Cochrane Ranchehouse Theatre, located at 101 RancheHouse Road, at 7 p.m. April 12 and 13. The show is free but Del Ben said if larger groups want to attend it is best to email email@example.com ahead of time.
“(This play) is something that was done for the community,” Bertolo said. “We want people to enjoy it and we hope it sends a message to as many people as possible.”