Expressive Arts Workshops for Employee Wellness, Engagement, and Teambuilding
Workplace Community Theatre offers companies a unique toolkit of experiential practices to improve employee health and wellness through intrapersonal and interpersonal theater exercises designed to increase vitality and productivity in the workplace.
Workplace Community Theatre can be presented as a standalone seminar or an ongoing workshop series. We provide a safe, encouraging environment for dynamic self-expression, active listening, and group reflections, dancing on the razor’s edge of improvised play, teambuilding and collective healing.
Derived from Playback Theater and drama therapy forms, our lead facilitator, Abram R. Katz, will lead small to large groups through interactive expressive arts exercises to foster a healthy workplace community.
Our onsite employee wellness workshops and seminars will benefit any employer seeking to enhance creativity, reduces stress, improve team dynamics, enhance emotional intelligence, increase employee engagement and retention, enhance problem-solving, address equity and celebrate diversity company-wide.
This modality was created for everyone to be seen, heard, and truly valued within a group setting. Individual stories, life experiences, and dreams will be used as material for group performance and reflection. Each seminar and/or workshop series will include warmup exercises focused on basic improvisational techniques surrounding giving offers, listening, trusting, staying in character, going with the flow, and working together. Traditional Playback Theater and drama therapy forms will make up the bulk of our sessions, as well as emergent expressive art activities designed by Abram to encourage active listening and nonjudgement.
Companies and corporations who may benefit from our training seminars include health and wellness agencies, higher education institutions, tech startups, financial institutions, hospitality-driven retreat centers, philanthropic foundations, and arts organizations – just to name a few. Ideal candidates are businesses with a customer satisfaction focus who would benefit from socially and emotionally intelligent staff. Employees exhibiting these characteristics are more likely to interview well, present information accurately, complete tasks, and work together as a cohesive team to achieve company benchmarks.
"Abram's experience level and the structure he provides allows for the most incredible creative flow. His embodiment of truly knowing this work is filled with trust in all of us to show up, be vulnerable, to see, connect, and care for each other. He holds a space for us to create magic together, weaving our stories into a tapestry of loving kindness. He knows exactly what to say to bring us present and reflect back our experiences in a meaningful and profound way."
~ Ruthie Yarme, Retreat Coordination Specialist
CHALLENGES AND SOLUTIONS
Businesses face a wide range of challenges in today's workplace; Many of which have been brought to the forefront by recent global events. These challenges impact various aspects of business operations and employee well-being.
Examples of key obstacles to success and how we can help your company surmount them:
1. Remote Work and Hybrid Models: The shift to remote work during the COVID-19 pandemic has brought about challenges related to maintaining productivity, product quality, collaboration, and employee engagement. Our seminars and workshops are an invaluable opportunity to bring everyone back together at a single point in time to foster a sense of community through shared experiences. Employees who feel cared for by one another are more likely to contribute to company culture and value their position within it.
2. Mental Health and Well-being: The pandemic has also significantly impacted mental health and well-being in the workplace. Companies are now challenged to provide resources and support to help employees cope with stress, anxiety, and burnout. Our expressive arts toolkit will help to stave off mental health crises and build resilient employee networks and meaningful relationships that are the backbone of wellbeing.
3. Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI): Many organizations are grappling with issues related to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Utilizing the Playback Theater model, we will share our personal stories and experience characters in each other’s lives firsthand; this form of community theater actively addresses bias, builds empathy and a sense of common ground that ventures beyond inclusivity to the celebration of diversity!
4. Geopolitical Uncertainty and Economic Instability: These tensions can greatly impact business operations and require companies to adapt to changing circumstances. We offer skills-building for actively listening to others and picking up on social-emotional cues. This important relational tool is often underdeveloped in employees due to our fast-paced society and the rapid onset of digital communication.
5. Customer Expectations: Customer expectations are continually evolving, driven by changes in technology and consumer behavior. Classic improvisational theater exercises included in our workshops and seminars are the perfect way to build employees’ spontaneity and adaptability muscles when interacting with new clients and humanizing those interactions for the win.
SEIZE THE DAY!
Prioritizing employee mental health and well-being is not only a compassionate and ethical choice but also a strategic one. It can lead to a more engaged, productive, and resilient workforce, which ultimately benefits the organization's bottom line and reputation. In a competitive job market, offering robust mental health and well-being programs attracts and retains top talent, prevents burnout, absenteeism, and turnover which can greatly reduce financial impact on your business. As such, now is an ideal time for organizations to invest in mental health and well-being initiatives in the workplace.
ABOUT ABRAM KATZ
As a multi-medium artist and facilitator, Abram offers rare insight into human behavior and a cultivated understanding of storytelling. Driven by a passion for personal growth and social change, Abram harbors a unique ability to source meaningful, transformative experiences from our collective story. Abram has performed in four Playback troops in Eugene, OR. Kona, HI, Ashland, OR. and the greater SF Bay Area. Abram studied drama therapy and autobiographical theater performance at the Living Arts Counseling Center in Berkeley, CA. He is an internationally published fine art photographer, 3-time film festival winner, and an artist grant recipient for countless social-emotional impact installations and civic engagement projects. Having founded multiple public charities and organized over 40 school-community restoration and prevention programs, he is a wealth of experiential knowledge in the realms human advancement and cultural phenomenon. Abram is most known for the deep level of care that he brings to his work and the communities he serves.
"I have been blown away by Abram's ability to take the forms of Playback, Drama Therapy, and Creative Flow, and mix them up to create a space where I can be both an actor and receiver. You know how in sports when you are playing with better players than you, and you subsequently improve? Abram helps me get out of my own way and 'play up' to a new level of the work."
~ Chris Turzo, CEO Acquisition Expert
WELLNESS EXERCISES: PLAYBACK THEATER
Pairs – One person shares two contrasting feelings they are experiencing and two members of the group embody these elements through a short interactive performance.
Moving Sculptures – One person tells a short story from their life and a group of 4-5 participants capture the basic essence of the story through a sequence of movements and phrases.
Long-from Playbacks – Similar to Moving Sculptures, one person shares a story and the group plays it back with a full cast of characters and scenes. (Note: Emphasis is on the sharing and listening component over any performative elements)
WELLNESS EXERCISES: PSYCHODRAMA
Witnessed Self-Reflection - Here we gaze at ourselves in a hand-mirror within a public setting and respond verbally with what we see. Shares are then recapitulated by 4-5 participants in a spontaneous spoken-word performance.
Answering the Call – Here we answer an imaginary phone call from someone you have unfinished business with or would simply like to remember. The facilitator will "ring you" and you can keep answering the call until it feels complete.
Addressing a Photograph – Here we speak to a photo of our younger selves as an adult, using role-reversals and character embodiment to strengthen a deep, loving relationship with all of your selves.
Amplifying the Critic – Here we give full voice to our inner critics with the intension of seeing it for what it is and changing our relationship to it.
2-hour workshop - starting at $2,000 (per 25 people)
4-hour workshop - starting at $3,500 (per 50 people)
6-hour workshop - starting at $5,000 (per 75 people)
Retreats & Seminars - starting at $8,000 (per 100 people)
Ongoing – estimated at $4,000 (per 4-hour session) Each ongoing package will be tailored to meet the needs of each unique client.
EQUITY, DIVERSITY + INCLUSION
All workshops and seminars are an open platform for exploring internalized messages of hate and bias, feelings of low self-worth, institutional racism, sexism, embracing non-binary and queer stories in the collective narrative, and making sure underrepresented voices are given deliberate amplification and care. Shared life experiences are built into the very nature of this work and ultimately lead to a profound level of empathy that makes EDI an undeniable lived truth.
“There’s something about the way Abram shows up with this quality of unconditional openness; It brings the perfect level of safety and tenderness so that we can do this work and dig deep. He’s brilliant at interpreting our stories from a different angle, which allows us to see ourselves in a whole new way. Not only the skills and experience that Abram brings to the table, but just who he is as a person. I truly benefited from this work.”
~ Hannah Muse, Yoga/Mindfulness Teacher and Event Facilitator
Abram R. Katz