The KISS Project: Keeping Intimacy Safe on Stage for Young Performers
Lojo is the recipient of the 2020 Innovation Grant from the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas for The KISS Project: Keeping Intimacy Safe on Stage for Young Performers, a guide for theatre educators working with actors ages 10-18.
The history of abuse against women and girls is long and deep, but it wasn’t until Twitter erupted with the hashtag #metoo in the wake of sexual abuse charges against producer Harvey Weinstein in 2017 that the world finally woke up to the need to put consent front and center in our public dialogue. In the years since, many powerful men have been brought down for their unethical and/or illegal sexual behavior. Consent has become the watchword for social and business relationships. Businesses, government and educational institutions have instituted long-overdue policies and procedures designed to protect workers from sexual abuse. Nowhere has this effort been more evident than in theatre, film and television, all of which have developed protocols for safe expression of intimacy on stage and screen. The #metoo movement also has fostered conversations in schools about topics such as abuse and consent. The KISS Project builds upon these existing foundational movements to explore consent-based practices for keeping intimacy safe on stage with young actors. A research-based report, The KISS Project summarizes the current state of consent-based theatre education and explores the potential application of best practices in intimacy choreography in educational settings.