The Lab Mosaic Project brings expert theater artists to Lab for community building

The+Lab+Mosaic+Project+is+a+year-long+program+where+students+will+have+the+opportunity+to+participate+in+theater+workshops+led+by+professional+actors.

Midway Staff

The Lab Mosaic Project is a year-long program where students will have the opportunity to participate in theater workshops led by professional actors.

Joaquin Figueroa, Reporter

Students have the opportunity to participate in theater workshops led by professional actors as part of a new program organized by five Laboratory Schools arts teachers.

The Lab Mosaic Project is a year-long program that will bring in outside artists to focus on building and improving the Lab community. 

Audre Nakas, a middle school drama teacher who heads the Lab Mosaic Project committee, said that the program has three main goals.

“The main goal is to use the art form of theater to build community, to have a way to share a joyful experience, and to reflect our student body in the art works that we choose so that everybody feels seen,” she said.

The idea of having the Lab Mosaic Project first came to mind when a group of teachers read and discussed the play “Pipeline” by Dominique Morisseau, which focuses on an African American student who attends a private school and a controversial incident around race threatens to get him expelled. They saw some possible similarities to racist incidents at Lab and wondered if they could use theater to address the incidents presented in the play and that occur in this school as well.

The Lab Mosaic Project collaborates with outside theater groups. The first series of workshops features the Free Street Theatre. Free Street Theatre is a group in Chicago that focuses on making thought-provoking theater with a focus on a diverse range of groups.

This project is a year-long way of bringing in theater from the outside, like from Chicago, and using our resources here.”

“This project is a year-long way of bringing in theater from the outside, like from Chicago, and using our resources here,” Ms. Nakas said.

The Free Street workshops have been going on every Monday from 3:45-5:15 p.m. since Oct. 18 and will go on until Nov. 15. A Free Street Talk will be held Nov. 17 from 7:30-9:30 p.m.

Ms. Nakas said it is important to the committee that the workshops reflect the student body.

“Whether it’s an artist that comes to visit, whether it’s a play that we do, whether it’s a discussion,” she said, “we want to feel like the student body — whether it’s race, ethnicity, religion, gender identification, sexual identity — that they can see a piece of themselves.”

Guest artists are sponsored by the Kistenbroker Foundation.

The Lab Mosaic Project post on the Lab school website says that the project is dedicated to uniting all parts of the Lab community to create one masterpiece through the project.