Blending Art and Activism in "Beautiful Trouble"

Willow Southwell ’22
COVID-19 has restricted our ability to enjoy many of the activities that we loved pre-quarantine. Due to these restrictions, Shipley will not be able to have their fall performances, however, something else has come to fill their place: Beautiful Trouble.

Beautiful Trouble, directed by Ms. Gibson, the Upper School public speaking teacher, is a performance protest piece comprised of scenes, monologues, poetry, short films, and more. Beautiful Trouble hopes to raise awareness for issues that are close to our hearts. 

Ms. Gibson remarks, “We were trying to find a way to create theatre in this new reality where public performance and gathering is not viable or safe. We were also trying to find a way to give voice to the many issues that have been at the forefront of our lives and have been magnified by the pandemic. Art, by allowing us to imagine a world that may not exist, is a remarkable resource for those wanting to instigate change. Beautiful Trouble feels like the right response at this time.” 

The students involved will choose a topic that they are passionate about and create a piece commenting on it. These pieces will be prerecorded, edited together, and broadcasted on YouTube on November 20 at 7:30 pm. The project will remain on YouTube afterwards for those who are unable to attend the live broadcast. Ms. Gibson encourages all students to watch these performances and support their peers. It will be a night of raising awareness, education, and art.

This article was originally published in the October 2020 issue of The Beacon.
The Shipley School is a private, coeducational day school for pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students, located in Bryn Mawr, PA. Through our commitment to educational excellence, we develop within each student a love of learning and a desire for compassionate participation in the world.