Contemporary theatre for children as the specific form of performing arts
Keywords: theatre for children, perception, cognitive abilities, KITOKS festival, performance for babies
AbstractWhile theatre for children and young audiences is still fighting for equal rights in the art and research communities, this article seeks to present contemporary children’s theatre as a separate and equal form of performing arts. It aims to show that the particularities are determined by the choice of topics and means of expression aimed at cognitive abilities of different age groups and that adult support is necessary for the children to experience and process the presentation and topics shown. Seeking to introduce examples of best practices, the essay analyses performances presented at the KITOKS international festival for children and youth, organized in Lithuania since 2011, as well as dance performances for babies created by the choreographer Birutė Banevičiūtė. The article demonstrates that performances for babies and older children are uniquely different and their creation requires specific knowledge and abilities. The variety of performance forms shows the inadequacy of the “family performance” designation still popular in Lithuania.