In November 2012, we celebrated 10 years of theatre in the Colina 1 prison. Letters and videos came from the many people from Chile and around the world who have collaborated with this experience.
We acknowledge the ground-breaking work of Teatro Pasmi who initiated the experience, also the strength and commitment of those who have participated over the years, as well as those who continue to participate in and coordinate the work.
Some of the greetings we received follow…
Dear friends, keep on being a fundamental reference for other groups that seek the same goals, you have done it very well, you are doing it better. Profesor Juan Urtubia, ex-director Technical Area Colina 1 prison, now director Coquimbo Region Technical Area. Corrections Chile
Year after year we look forward to this group being in our festival, because it has become a source of hope, since theatre has played a fundamental role in the lives of every person who is part of “Fénix & Ilusiones”. David Musa & Rubi Figueroa, directors, International Community Theatre Festival ENTEPOLA
Continuous activity is not a common thing for groups or companies who still haven’t resolved the question of economic survival, therefore 10 years of theatrical work is like a slap in the face for those who doubt, for those who are half-hearted, for those afraid to begin. Tercer Cordón Teatro, Moreno, Buenos Aires, Argentina
I remember the sharing of mate, the skills and techniques, the vulnerability, the colour, the light, how time transformed, and most of all I remember the immensity of spirit and heart in that space of freedom. Xris Reardon, director, Third Way Theatre, Melbourne, Australia
What I have learnt from my both times in Colina is this: to remember people for who they are, and who they are are human beings, and if we want to make any kind of social change, we need to have love for one another, we need to have love and faith in human beings, and without that we will always fail. And that’s what I’ve learnt from the guys in Colina and I will forever be in their debt. Matthew Elliott, community theatre worker, England, UK
I must tell you that I am proud to have begun my prison work with you, because you made me understand what prison work CAN BE, and how your experience, your lives, your messages, can contribute to the building of a better world. Jean-Marc Munaretti, theatre director, Liège, Belgium
In all my experience of working abroad in Prison Theatre (notably in Milan in Italy, in Belfast and Cork in Ireland, in Manchester in the UK, and in Oslo in Norway) I have never encountered such enthusiasm in a Drama class, and such a friendly welcoming atmosphere. I was greeted with hugs and smiles, like an old friend. There was a wonderful imagination within the group, and some ideas I have never seen before or since in interpreting the masks. You made them truly your own and applied them directly to your experience of prison life. I have never seen this done before or since. Sally Elsbury, director, Mask Matters, Cork, Ireland
For me, it is undeniable to recognise that you made me see the reality of life, thanks to you I have grown as a person, and thanks to “Fénix & Ilusiones” and their great theatre work, I feel more of an artist. I can say no more than express my admiration and gratitude to you all. Guys: you’re amazing. Víctor Robles, documentary filmmaker, Santiago, Chile