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Public policy meets improv theater at Central College

Public policy meets improv theater at Central College

October 30, 2015

If you’re intimidated or bored by public policy, a Minneapolis troupe of actors wants to show you how engaging and educational those topics can be. The Theater of Public Policy will present improvisational performances at 11 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. Nov. 12 at Central College. Both events are in Cox-Snow Recital Hall and free, supported by Thomas J. and Charlene P. Gaard Endowed Residency in the Liberal Arts and Arts Midwest Touring Fund.

“Imagine C-SPAN being swarmed by the cast of SNL and you’ve got The Theater of Public Policy.” – Minneapolis Star Tribune

The Theater of Public Policy uses intelligent humor and improv comedy to tackle leading issues. They teach and perform Nov. 12-13 at Central College.

At 11 a.m., the cast and their guest, Adam Mason, will combine interview and improvisation in “Talk.Walk.Act: Engaging Public Policy through Citizen Involvement.” They will discuss sustainability, agriculture and water quality issues in Iowa, including the controversial Des Moines Water Works lawsuit. Mason is state policy organizing director for Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement and a 2002 Central graduate.

Adam Mason is state policy organizing director at Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement. He graduated from Central in 2002 and lives with wife Anna in Des Moines.

Adam Mason is state policy organizing director at Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement. He graduated from Central in 2002.

At 7:30 p.m., cast members will perform with audience participation in “An Evening of Improv: Bringing Your Story to Life.” Students and guests will be invited to contribute by sharing personal stories related to sustainability and public policy.

Pella native Brandon Boat is a lead cast member and co-founder of The Theater of Public Policy. “I hope anyone who’s curious will be in the audience,” Boat said. “It will be fun. People will go away having laughed but also having learned.”

In addition to these community events, The Theater of Public Policy and Mason will lead many workshops and presentations for local high school and college students Nov. 12-13.

This makes the residency at Central special and different for the cast, Boat said. Instead of saying, “thank you and goodbye,” after performances, they have extra time for in-depth conversations with students and community members. “People who like to talk about difficult concepts will find it interesting, refreshing and unlike anything they’ll find somewhere else,” Boat said.

“I hope anyone who’s curious will be in the audience. It will be fun. People will go away having laughed but also having learned.” – Brandon Boat

This residency is made possible by the generous support of the Thomas J. and Charlene P. Gaard Endowed Residency in the Liberal Arts. This signature residency is intended to benefit Central College students, faculty, staff and the Pella community. It allows Central to host notable visitors on campus for multi-day residencies that reflect Central’s liberal arts emphasis, enhance students’ education and enable meaningful AM_color_smand up-close exchanges with experts. This presentation is supported by the Arts Midwest Touring Fund, a program of Arts Midwest that is funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, with additional contributions from Iowa Arts Council, the Crane Group and General Mills Foundation.

Public policy meets improv theater at Central College

Who: The Theater of Public Policy and Adam Mason ’02

What: Improv acting, interview and audience participation take on sustainability and public policy

Where: Central College, Cox-Snow Recital Hall

When: 11 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. Nov. 12

Cost: Free

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