Memphis Matters

Memphis Matters audiences connect with the heart of Memphis

Every year, Playback Memphis hosts six Memphis Matters public performances. These events “pay forward” six Community Matters performances and give hundreds of individuals the healing experience of Playback Theatre.

February 28, 2015 - Playback Memphis - Memphis Matters Performance at TheatreSouth (Photo by Mike Brown)

Whatever role YOU play in the community, Memphis Matters invites you to come and share your experience of living and working in our city. What’s rich and wonderful? What’s complex and challenging?

The concept of a Playback performance is simple — an audience member shares a reflection, moment, or true story from their lives and then watches that story played back on stage by a team of professional actors, musicians, and dancers. We find this simple act of listening to be life giving. And here’s what audience members are saying.…

“Witnessing these performances is the most powerful self-care I’ve ever experienced. Transformative. You all blow me away. I made a commitment to myself to never miss a performance, if I can help it.”   Misti Rae Holton

A Memphis Matters performance offers a needed antidote to the fear based, polarizing politics of the day. Performances draw a multi-generational audience, an amazingly, diverse cross-sector of the community.

Don’t have a story to tell? Feel free to participate or simply sit back and watch the magic unfold. Playback unlocks healing, transformation, and joy— one story at a time.

Our next Memphis Matters date is Saturday, December 10th at 7pm.

Community Matters 

Each year, Playback Memphis chooses six non-profit organizations from a pool of applicants to receive a Playback experience (performance or workshop) at a deeply discounted price. Those selected will also attend a Memphis Matters performance where the Community Matters partner’s work will be highlighted.

Playback is looking for organizations whose work with people has a human imperative for new voices to be heard and who could benefit from a tailored Playback experience. We recognize the deep impact of personal and historical collective trauma on individuals and communities. This is why we seek to share the practice of Playback theater as a resource with those who desire to engage healing, inspire hope, and build life affirming culture rooted in compassion and justice.

Workshops and performances offer rich experiential learning journeys that integrate:
● meaningful content supported by neuroscience,
● enlivening engagement,
● purposeful skill development, and
● rich opportunities for applied practice.

Concepts to explore include: self- compassion, navigating conflict, happiness and joy, mindful listening, and perspective taking.Themes can be custom tailored as well.

In this partnership, we offer a performance that will be specifically themed for the partner, as well as six complimentary tickets for the partner organization to experience Memphis Matters. We also love highlighting and promoting the good work of our Community Matters partners to our Memphis Matters audiences through performance, social media and word of mouth. We seek to collaborate with partners to foster dialogue, awareness and unity of mission. Unsure if the Playback experience is right for your group? Feel free to reach out to us with questions before completing the application. Contact Ann at [email protected]/ 901-264-0841.

Your non-profit can apply for our 2023 season by clicking here.

Thanks to all of our 2020 Community Matters Partners and sponsors! 

Tennessee Arts Commission
Arts Memphis

Playback Memphis is proud to be supported by Arts Memphis, the Tennessee Arts Commission, the First Tennessee Foundation, the Plough Foundation, the Thomas W. Briggs Foundation, and the Assisi Foundation of Memphis
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