ACTion: Tanzania


To view the  ACTion: Tanzania brochure , click  HERE .

To view the ACTion: Tanzania brochure, click HERE.

ACTion: Tanzania is a month-long journey across Tanzania, followed by a week of festival performances in NYC.


  • Amplify often unheard voices through DAT’s Community Storytelling Project
  • Explore diverse cultures and terrain
  • Workshop with local experts, artists, and theatre companies
  • Engage with local communities through arts education and service projects
  • Collaborate with professional artists in creation of new devised theatre pieces
  • Perform original pieces in Stone Town, Zanzibar and New York City

You can expect to:



Start your journey in vibrant Dar es Salaam.  The largest city in East Africa, Dar is a place where the ancient meets the now, where Maasai warriors in traditional robes stride through the hum of a modern metropolis.  In this contemporary seat of Swahili culture, you’ll begin your cast’s devised theatrical process with director-led rehearsals and workshops with DAT’s resident playwright. Also, prepare for upcoming service work with teaching artist training led by DAT’s director of education and begin your community engagement at a local orphanage, as well as Kigamboni Community Centre, a thriving school for the arts. 



Leaving the bustle of Dar es Salaam behind, you’ll travel next to the quiet seaside village of Bagamoyo. Translating roughly to “lay down your heart,” Bagamoyo is a place where newly captured slaves first saw the Indian Ocean and last saw Africa.  Remnants of Bagamoyo’s complex history can still be found in the ruins of the slave market, along with other monuments, such as colonial era German forts and the ruins of medieval Persian mosques.  While exploring Tanzania’s intricate past, delve into its present by workshopping with Parapanda Theatre, a local company dedicating to tackling contemporary issues. In addition, you’ll practice traditional mask dancing with master teachers at TaSUBA, one of Africa’s largest arts universities.   As you continue to synthesize your experience through further rehearsals and playwriting workshops, you’ll also prepare for your ACT TWO assignment with advanced teaching artist training.  



Now our group will split, with each half trekking into a distinct area of Tanzania’s interior to lead a week of devised theatre workshops with local youth.  The workshops will result in free public performances of student written plays, which give voice to their experience. 


From the towering heights of Mount Kilimanjaro to the sweeping plains of the Serengeti, Northern Tanzania is the quintessential Africa in the minds of many.  However, your cast will dig deeper than the average tourist by working with the internationally renowned children’s village Light in Africa.  Run by the indomitable Mama Lynn, Light in Africa is a remarkable place that provides shelter to outcast children with severe disabilities and HIV.  While empowering these forgotten voices, casts will also engage in various service projects (basically, whatever Mama tells us to do). 

Those who travel to Southern Tanzania will take part in a truly “off the beaten track” experience.  While camping near the teeming Eden that is Selous Game Reserve, your cast will conduct workshops with youth in the tiny village of Mloka.  Here, village elders have specifically requested for DAT to use theatre to educate youth on the dangers and costs of poaching.  To help us facilitate this vital ecological education, we’ve partnered with local safari guides, who will also help us facilitate service projects that benefit this overlooked community.  



No matter which direction your cast goes, DAT’s partner Daigle Tours will help to immerse you in the incomparable natural splendor of Tanzania.   In the North, casts will take part in a day and a half safari to either the Serengeti or the equally amazing Ngorogoro Crater.  The week will also include a tour of a local animal rehabilitation center, where you will accompany an expert on a jungle-hike with monkeys that are being reintroduced to the wild.  In the South, casts will experience a day and a half safari in Selous Game Reserve (the largest reserve in Africa), while also having the opportunity for a river safari, where your boat will cut through waters brimming with hippopotami and crocodile (don’t worry; they steer clear of boats).



The whole group joins forces again on the island paradise of Zanzibar.  A center of international trade since ancient times, Zanzibar is a place where African, Arabic, Indian, and European cultures have mixed to create a truly unique corner of the globe.  Your time will be split between touring the twisting alleyways of Stone Town (UNESCO world heritage site), learning about the spice industry from local farmers, or snorkeling off of Zanzibar’s pristine white sand beaches.  All of this sets the stage for your final week of rehearsals, as your cast fully synthesizes your experience into a new piece of devised theatre. 



Your time on the “spice island” will culminate in a preview performance in Stone Town, hosted by the Zanzibar International Film Festival.  Here, your cast will share its original play with a Tanzanian audience, furthering the mission of cultural exchange and allowing you to receive invaluable local feedback on the piece. 



All participants of ACTion: Tanzania will return to NYC to rehearse and perform their final pieces in Manhattan with their fellow traveling artists. This festival of short plays is designed to celebrate the spirit of adventure. The work of each cast will reflect their unique experiences in Tanzania and will bring awareness to this region. The NYC festival offers the opportunity to showcase your work for the NYC theatre community and is also a great opportunity for artists to interview for future staff positions with DAT.


We will travel across Tanzania from June 16 to July 15, 2016.
Artists must also be available for a week of festival performances in NYC from July 16 to July 24, 2016.

ACTion: Tanzania will return again in the summer of 2019.



$7950 USD*
  *Professional artists (those not enrolled in a collegiate program and actively working in their local theatre community) will automatically receive a $450 USD ACTion grant to be applied towards the cost of participation.

This amount includes:

  • International flights (from major hubs to Dar es Salaam to NYC)
  • Lodging for all 30 nights in Tanzania
  • A month of traveler's insurance
  • All ground transportation
  • All scheduled activities, including workshops with master teachers (your days are full)
  • A daily food per diem (to cover all meals)
  • And more!

NOTE: The cost of participation does not include your transportation from NYC to your home, nor does it include any expenses in NYC. Please also note that due to the nature of this project, there are no refunds. For a more detailed breakdown, contact

We currently have 6 ACTion grants available — three for $1000 USD and another three for $500 USD.  These grants are strictly for DAT’s alumni artists and must be applied towards the cost of participation on ACTion (at the appropriate rate, either student or professional). To apply, email and state your case why you deserve the grant.  In 200 words or less, discuss the value of your previous ‘dramatic adventure’ and what you hope to bring to ACTion: Tanzania. The deadline for grant applications is February 15.
We are more than happy to work with you and your home institution to set up an independent study, practicum, or internship for this experience.  And for an additional credit fee, we also offer six 400/500 level credits via our partners at West Virginia University.  For more details, email

Ready for a dramatic adventure?

We are carefully selecting actors from across the U.S. and around the world.  

We are looking for talented actors who have a strong desire to engage with foreign cultures, explore devised theatre, and empower youth across the world.  There are a total of 40 artist positions (actors, directors, writers, and designers) available for this year's expedition.  Artists will be strategically placed in a cast based on their skill sets, personality, shared interests, and our particular casting needs.  Each cast will consist of 1 director, 1 road manager/translator, and approximately 6 artists.


Schedule your audition today!

Email with your headshot/resume to take the first step on an incredible journey.