The original Playback Theatre company in 1979. Clockwise from top left: Jonathan Fox, Vince Furfaro, Neil Weiss, Susan Denton, Michael Clemente, Carolyn Gagnon, Gloria Robbins, Danielle Gamache, Judy Swallow. Peter Christman with coat hanger, Jo Salas under the fishnet. 
(To read more words from Simon online, simply click on the title of this article.)
Welcome to the IPTN Journal, the new title for Interplay.  The Journal is the place to share ideas, reflections and events occurring in the Playback Theatre world.  We publish at a significant moment in time.  This edition of the Journal coincides with several significant events in the Playback world:
2015 is the Fortieth Anniversary of Playback Theatre
2015 sees the IPTN International Conference in Montreal
The IPTN has rebranded and launched a new website
Interplay becomes the IPTN Journal
…and there is a new editor …me!  
The IPTN Journal (formerly Interplay) remains a place for sharing Playback values and events.  It is also a site of respectful dialogue and debate.  As we celebrate forty years of Playback Theatre and continue to promote its dissemination throughout the world, it is inevitable that questions of values, ethics and methods come into play.  The IPTN Journal is one tool that the global community can use to question, challenge and debate these matters in a respectful manner. 
(To read the full article in Hungarian and English online, simply click on the title of the article.)
... I know very little about you, but I know the SPIRIT OF PLAYBACK. I do not know English but through knowing the Spirit of Playback Theatre since 1992, I feel that I know you a little bit too. I am familiar with the emotions that went into planning, shaping, and experimentation as it took place. You were present in our work. To begin something new and unknown is one of the most exciting and adventurous activities. I am very grateful that you started Playback and that I had an opportunity to know you through this movement!...
* Ádám started an improvisational theatre movement in Hungary in 1992 based upon the theory of The Improvisation Theatre of Moreno and he further developed this theory. Currently he is a teacher at the Middle European Playback Theatre School. He is an internationally accredited Playback trainer. In 2014, Jonathan Fox awarded him a diploma with kind appreciation for his 22 years of dedicated service.
(Click on the title to go on our website, read the entire article and comment on it.)
...Playback Theatre is 40 years old this year. Our newsletter has a new name, a new editor, and a new look. It is timely to have a look at how, and how well, we are writing about Playback Theatre. Over the years, good writing has deepened our own understanding of our work and brought it to the attention of people outside our community. But some writing has done little more than report approvingly on the writer’s own project, saying, in effect: “Look at what we did! Isn’t it wonderful!”...
(The entire article is available on Click on the title to read and comment.)
Ben Rivers, 2015
...As Jonathan looked towards the future, he shared his hope that Playback Theatre could also “play a part in healing some of the injustices and upheavals of the past that fester not only in individuals, but in whole societies”. (Fox 1999:15) ...
...As we near the 40th year anniversary of Playback Theatre, we can see that an interest in its more overt political application is gathering momentum.  This can be evidenced through the growing demand for workshops and courses that explore the intersection between Playback Theatre and social action.  We can also point to many instances over the past decade where Playback has been used to address various social inequities, historical grievances and political demands....
(The entire article is available on Click on the title to read and comment.)
...As Playback Theatre develops, it does follow that accreditation would be a natural next step. I am not against that in principle, it is just that I am against the diminishing of other pathways in favour of it.  Playback Theatre is in transition and its an open question as to how everyone can be included in that in a skilful and mindful way to avoid the risk of fragmentation. I am interested in how the trust in the original grassroots culture could be underpinned by encouraging a formal ethical approach in general rather than being reserved just for accredited trainers.  The Code of Ethics could be introduced at the earliest stage of training as a discussion tool to make it part of the overall PT culture from the outset....
Brian Tasker is an IPTN registered Practitioner and PT Leadership Graduate (2008). He is also a counsellor with senior BACP accreditation with a background in Hospice work, mental health and substance misuse.
Code of Ethics for Playback Theatre Trainers and Practitioners
As practitioners and trainers of Playback Theatre, we agree to uphold the following Code of Ethics:
Respect, Inclusiveness, Emergence, Competence, Human rights, Collegial relationships, Privacy and confidentiality, Ethics topics in training and Supervision.
(Click on the title to get the details of each element and comment to exchange with other members about your thoughts.)
Tutors at the Open University of Israel have been through a professional and personal voyage using Playback Theatre as a tool to reflect on their work and as a source of improvisational techniques that they can use in their classes.

The purpose of this paper is to reveal the story of the establishment of a new PT group for university tutors. It will recount the process of building a new group and the personal and professional contribution of PT to the participants.  Moreover, we would like to shed light on the process of using PT as a mediation tool for PD for the University teaching staff. We will also discuss the gains earned after the first year (7 months) that the practitioners shared....
(To be continued online: click on the title to read and comment on the article.)
...The core of the idea is that playback theatre stimulates communication through the medium of embodied stories. If the playback theatre event goes well, the audience feels both more connected and wiser (that is, meaning has been conveyed), and the catalysts are us, the performers.
To stimulate the flow of stories, we use combinations of seven interlocking nodes:...
(To learn from Jonathan, click on the title of this article to read online. You may even comment on it to exchange ideas with other members.)
Ariane Ehinger, Chairwoman of the School of Playback-Theater-Netzwerk e.V. and Andrea Schulze, IPTN Reg. Rep. German Language Countries both reported of the training "Back to the Roots" they had with Jonathan Fox in Spring. Get a sense of their understanding of Narrative Reticulation and have a peek at their notes on the core learning. Click on the title to read the articles online and feel free to comment if you have any question or thoughts to share.
New novel: Dancing with Diana
Jo Salas’s novel, Dancing with Diana was recently published by Codhill Press. Set in England and Paris, it is about Alex, a young man in a wheelchair and a survivor of severe school bullying who meets the future Princess Diana when they’re both teenagers. The bullying theme (Diana is also a victim) draws on the anti-bullying work in schools pioneered by Jo with Hudson River Playback Theatre.
In addition to her extensive writing about Playback Theatre, Jo’s short stories have been published in literary journals and anthologies. Her work has won awards and a nomination for the Pushcart Prize. Dancing With Diana, her first novel, is available from the publisher and from
Jonathan Fox’s memoir Beyond Theatre
Tusitala Publishing is happy to announce the publication of Beyond Theatre: A playback theatre memoir, by founder Jonathan Fox. Beyond Theatre tells Jonathan’s personal story of the background and evolution of playback theatre, with chapters about his childhood in New York City and formative experiences as a young man in Nepal and New Zealand. He describes the emergence of the playback theatre vision, and how playback grew from its beginnings with the original company to its current worldwide presence. It is a story of struggle as well as discovery and deep satisfaction—the often-unsuccessful effort to find acceptance and support for a new form of theatre that transcended familiar categories.
Jonathan Fox is the founder, with Jo Salas, of playback theatre. He is a Harvard graduate and Fulbright scholar, and the recipient of an honorary doctorate from the University of Kassel in Germany. He is the author of Acts of Service: Spontaneity, Commitment, Tradition in the Non-scripted Theatre and the co-editor of Gathering Voices: Essays on Playback Theatre.
Beyond Theatre: A playback theatre memoir is available from Tusitala Publishing and
International Playback Theatre Network