The NEWSPAPER THEATRE  system of 12 techniques represents the first attempt that was made to create the Theatre of the Oppressed, by giving the audience the means of production rather than the finished artistic product. They are devised to help anyone to make a theatrical scene using a piece of news from a newspaper, or from any other written material, like reports of a political meeting, texts from the Bible, from the Constitution of a country, the Declaration of Human Rights, etc.
Augusto Boal, Rio de Janeiro 2004 (from the International Theatre of the Oppressed Organisation)

 

Augusto Boal describes the 12 techniques of Newspaper Theatre as “a play about how to create a play” which suggests simple ways of transforming non-dramatic like Newspaper articles into a performance and critical reading of social reality. Newspaper Theatre is the first technique of Theatre of the Oppressed created during the Brazilian dictatorship times and it inspired hundreds of popular group to create theatre events which provided a critical reading of the news published by the regime. In the very same year of the birth of Newspaper Theatre, 1971, Boal was arrested walking down the street. He was jailed and tortured by the regime, and only thanks to the intervention and solidarity of the global of theatre-makers which called for his release (Including famous American playwright Arthur Miller) he eventually was released and sent into exile.