Speech and drama are important aspects of education which are included in various countries.
While most argue that values are best learnt through reading and storytelling sessions, such impacts cannot be compared to one who is engaged or rather, immersed in the role of characters in a meaningful play.
One can play both the role of protagonists or antagonists. When one is in an acting role, one puts oneself in the skin of the character and takes a life of its own. Through understanding the psyche of the subconscious intentions and motives of various characters in the play or story, one begins to understand life.
It is not surprising to hear common sayings such as:
“Life is a play. A play is Life.”
“Life is art imitating Life.”
“All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players: They have their exits and their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts……..” (William Shakespeare)
“Improvisational theatre is one of the most creative art forms ever created.”
The renowned Method Acting (which is effective but should not be taken to extreme) is also another proof that we all take on different roles in life (son, daughters, fathers, mothers, husbands, wives, daughter-in-laws, son-in-laws, employees, supervisors, bosses, citizens etc.). Thus, much as we would like to be true to ourselves, we need to strike a balance between the various roles in order to sincerely fulfill them. If we have a positive role model, we should strive to emulate them but only for their positive values. Alternative, we can learn to live by positive values and virtues.
There is also interactive cinema where audience engage with the movie and interactive gaming consoles such as XBox Kinnect and Wii, which serves to further reinforce the fact that humans have a penchant to immerse themselves in a role.
If this is the case, we might as well make the best of it by promoting positive role play and interactive activities to inculcate virtues in individuals and organisations, which beat media messages hands down.