From Jax Young, age 16
For me, it’s almost comforting to be a part of 12. It’s so easy to feel hopeless with everything that’s going on but performing 12 makes me feel like I’m doing something to help, even if it’s small. Performing makes me feel like I’m reaching out to people and asking them to make a difference too.
12 expresses a lot of our emotions surrounding climate change, the lack of intergenerational communication, and the looming deadline of 12 years. The warning that we only had 12 years left until the effect we have had on the Earth becomes irreversible came to us in 2018, and now it’s 3 years closer and it still feels like not much has changed. It’s frustrating and it’s terrifying. In a way, 12 is kind of an outlet for those feelings, letting me channel them into this work instead of feeling sad and hopeless all the time.
Being a part of 12 means a lot to me also because I can spend time in a place where I feel like I can be myself. It means a lot to me to be able to be a part of such a kind and supportive group of people.
From Kaatje Yates, age 15
12 is important to me for several reasons but especially because it gives me a voice. I don’t always know how to approach or talk about the climate crisis with my friends and family. When I’m performing 12 however, I know that people will listen and try to understand what I’m talking about. I can hope that after being at 12 they’ll attempt to place themselves in my shoes in order to understand my fears and anxieties in regards to the climate crisis.
Sometimes when hearing the news or reading scary statistics it’s easy to want to close yourself off to information about the climate crisis. 12 gives people the opportunity to open themselves to the need for climate action (I’m not really sure how to put this) in a more “gentle” way. I’d be excited to practice and perform 12 again because I’d get to experience the magic that is the relationship between art and life.
From Anna Carsley-Jones, age 16
The one word I would use to describe my thoughts & feelings towards both performances of 12 is “Powerful”. I felt that the performance itself and all of the information & concepts that the performance contained was very powerful. I myself felt strong and powerful, up there with the group, making our voices heard. It was overall a powerful project & performance and I really look forward to continuing with it.
From Raluca, age 13
I’m so thankful for the opportunity to be working as a part of this project. It’s an incredible experience and it makes me so happy that we can speak our minds about such an important global issue.
From Anna Wiebe, 15, upon first reading the script of 12
…literally I’m reading this and just massively relating to every word! Like all these things I’ve felt or thought or didn’t even realize I felt until I read them. and i just think it’s so honest and truthful and raw. It’s putting everything I never knew how to express into words. No part of it feels manufactured or like we’re trying to please a group of people. I also just love the concepts of each episode. it just seems so well thought out and I can see all the hard work and thought that was put into this!! It’s weird how the tone of the play feels very light but also extremely heavy. It’s a weird yet amazing balance.
One thought on “TESTIMONIALS FROM THE YOUTH INVOLVED IN 12”
I’ve been fascinated to read about the progress of “12” and I wonder, are there any plans to broadcast it over Zoom etc, or to make a professional video which could be seen by groups far from Ottawa?
I am co-chair of an international virtual conference Earth Up 2022 (April 8-10) which will focus on eco-justice via science and storytelling. In addition to workshops and performances, we will feature pre-recorded “Spotlights” which will be viewable on-demand during the conference. I’m thinking that a video of “12” would be a perfect fit.
I look forward to hearing from you,
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