Through the power of theatre, we strive to provide older adults, and in particular those with Alzheimer’s and related dementias, with the tools to build community, express themselves creatively and experience moments of joy.
We offer theatrical workshops with an emphasis on interactive storytelling and reminiscence, using multi-sensory activities.
Our offerings are designed to provide small group, individualized engagement where activities are catered to the participants’ interests, experiences and physical and cognitive abilities.
Photo by Michael Wilson
Acting Our Age has created themed Surprise Boxes to engage isolated older adults and older adults in long-term care in meaningful and creative activities during the pandemic. Our Surprise Boxes contain a variety of compelling, interactive items. Each box provides opportunities for Storytelling, Arts & Crafts, Music & Dance and Sensory engagement. Our goal is to deliver moments of joy for each recipient.
TimeSlips® is a multi-disciplinary approach to storytelling, developed by Dr. Anne Basting, that invites persons with memory loss to create stories (based on visual prompts) without the pressures of retrieving memories.
Laurence and Grace are both TimeSlips® certified facilitators.
Reminiscence is the act of recalling and sharing one's memories. When used in dementia care facilities, reminiscence work often uses objects, sensory stimulants, and familiar physical routines to awaken memories. We understand that with dementia, memories are often conflated and may not be accurate. This does not matter in our work to create moments of joy! Reminiscence work is the jumping off point for participants' creative expression.
Interactive Storytelling is a drama-based activity, developed by Helen Wheelock of the Creative Arts Team (CAT), that promotes language acquisition and literacy, social development, critical thinking skills and emotional growth among early learners.
Acting Our Age has adapted Interactive Storytelling for older adults with dementia and uses it as a means of shared storytelling, movement, music-making, and all-around creative fun.
Grace is a teaching artist and dramaturg who uses theatre games, interactive storytelling, performance and sensory-based engagement to create moments of shared joy. She believes everyone can benefit from the human interactions and emotional release applied theatre practices can create. She has worked with older adults with dementia, incarcerated youth and adults, elementary and high school students, early learners and LGBTQ emerging adults. She is TimeSlips® certified and has a special love of Shakespeare and believes his works can be accessible and enjoyed by all.
Laurence is an actress, teaching artist, TimeSlips® certified facilitator, and a believer in the power of theatre to build community. She has worked with school-aged children and teenagers in NYC's public schools, Girl Scout troops, college students in Rwanda, and older adults in Brooklyn.
Laurence hols a BFA in Acting from NYU Tisch School of the Arts and an MA in Applied Theatre from CUNY School of Professional Studies.
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Acting Our Age Surprise Boxes are funded in part by
the Alzheimer's Foundation of America (AFA)