Interactive Theatre Uses Slido to Engage the Audience with Live Polls

Martina Cicakova

Have you ever visited a theater and wanted to have the chance to participate in the story? If the answer is yes, then interactive theatre plays are worth paying a visit.

If done right, an interactive play can be an extraordinary experience for the audience members. They become active participants as opposed to passive observers in traditional theatre.

To our joy,  Theatre Company hosted by the Arcola in London decided to implement Slido in order to engage the audience members and involve in the play.

Background

The play’s title was ‘Technically Speaking’ and it revolved around stories of men suffering from mental health illness. The goal was to raise awareness of mental health issues. The play promised that “each audience member will definitely come away with their version of the story, depending on how much, or how little, they want to involve themselves”.

To help participants to get the most out of the show, the crew transformed the theater dynamics with the use of technology.

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Technology at the core of audience engagement

The production and cast integrated various tech solutions. Phone calls and text messages related to the story and a particular mental health issue portrayed. On top of that, the actors used Slido live polls to let each attendee take a moment and contemplate questions related to mental illness.

The poll questions ranged from:

  • ‘under what conditions the parenting skills of a father with a mental disability should be assessed’, to
  • ‘how we think we should respond to jokes about mental illness’,
  • ‘whether or not and how to talk to someone with suicidal thoughts’, and many more.

The results of each poll were then displayed on a screen so the participants could clearly see where the majority of the audience shared the same viewpoints and where the opinion was divided. And also, how their individual opinion stood in the context of the general opinion.

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Conclusion

Slido helped Arcola Theatre to involve their audience members and make them a part of the story. Live polls enabled participants to reflect deeper on the personal level as well as to see the opinion of the majority. We were thrilled to see Slido being used in this creative manner, both helping to engage people and enhance the immediate experience.

Header photo credits: Magic Madzik licensed under CC-BY 2.0

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