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Music In Developmental Theatre As Social Responsibility

Research on Humanities and Social Sciences


Beyond the boundaries of human memory, art has served as a vehicle for the transmission of information and consequently of behaviour modification. This is entrenched in the effects that such art have on any mind: the nebulous stressed mind of the psychopath, the simpleton thought process of the retarded, the lusty disposition of the socialite, the moralistic upper chin of the religious zealot, and the elegant logic of the academic. Music and theatre have found a niche from where they nibble on the mind, surreptitiously depositing images and symbols embedded in the lyric by the music that cloaks them, the action that embellishes them, and the atmosphere that masks their barbed ideas which, in direct appeal, might have suffered neglect. This ability to permeate the mind unobtrusively translates into information that can make music and theatre efficient change agents. Music and drama therefore are useful in driving the theatre-for-development initiative as developing countries strive to leapfrog into better times, particularly in human enlightenment. This paper explores the compelling influence of music-drama as change agents in the practice of developmental theatre to win this war on backwardness, ignorance and helplessness. But victory leans on the careful management of the lyrics, the dedicated use of rhythm, the infusion of weighted action, and an appreciation of the limits of these media. Keywords: Music, Theatre-for development, social responsibility, human enlightenment, electrophony

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