PTO Conference in Chicago, 2022 (Postponed from 2020): Popular Power/Poder Popular



Popular Power/Poder Popular

Pre-conference workshop (in-person in Chicago) with Julian Boal: May 24-26, 2022

Online Conference (1 day; limited submission availability): May 25, 2022

In-Person Conference: May 26-29, 2022

Loyola University Chicago
Chicago, Illinois, 60660, USA

Vibrant collage of photographs of workers, organizers, activists, educators, students, and artists in action in various indoor and outdoor community settings in Chicago—in the street, in a park, in a rehearsal space, in an education center.

Looking for something specific? ¿Estás buscando algo específico? Você está procurando algo específico?

Submit proposals in English, en español, or em português by January 10th, 2022!

Deadline for Early Proposal Review or Confirmation of Intention to Present in a Session Previously Accepted for 2020 (with notification no later than January 15): December 1, 2021. Please note that, if you are concerned about the timeline of review and notification for reasons of travel, visas, or funding planning, you should submit by this date.

Deadline for Regular-Schedule Proposal Review (with notification no later than February 15): January 10, 2022

Propose a New Session


Confirm Intention to Present Previously Accepted Session

About PTO:
Pedagogy & Theatre of the Oppressed (PTO) is an international organization that supports people whose work challenges oppressive systems by promoting critical thinking and social justice through liberatory theatre and popular education. Our approaches stem from the theories and practices of Paulo Freire and Augusto Boal. We foster collaborative connections to share, develop, promote, and document liberatory theatre, popular education, and other revolutionary actions. Our annual conference seeks to provide an accessible, inclusive, and educational space. We actively seek both introductory sessions for those new to Pedagogy and Theatre of the Oppressed practices, as well as advanced sessions for long-time practitioners.

Honoring the theme of the PTO Chicago 2020 conference that has been postponed for 2 years due to COVID-19, PTO Chicago 2022 will emphasize popular struggle and popular power, which are themes as relevant as ever now.

By popular power, we mean actions that are:

  • Powered by people who are often excluded from conferences like this one.
  • Focused on genuine equality and justice.
  • Organized to dismantle systems that benefit some people at the expense of others.
  • Waged against elitism, condescension, class division, capitalism, racism, White supremacy,  coloniality and settler occupation, imperialism, nationalism and borders, fascism, austerity, privatization, patriarchy, heterosexism, gender norms, ageism, ableism, educational inequality, slavery, imprisonment, environmental destruction, and other forms of violence.
  • Taken collectively, built through movements or alliances (often hard, complicated, partial alliances) across barriers that have been built to keep people from fighting together.
  • Performed by, as Paulo Freire described, “people engaged in the fight for their own liberation.”
  • Reflective of Augusto Boal’s notion that, “[t]o be popular” is to “always tackle issues from the people’s perspective, that is, the perspective of permanent transformation, of anti-alienation, of struggle against exploitation.”

The full Call for Proposals with more information can be found here.

Download the Call for Proposals in English or read it here.

Descargue la convocatoria de propuestas en español o léala aquí.

Faça o download da chamada de propostas em português ou leia aqui.

COVID-19 Updates and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

This conference was originally scheduled for May 2020 and postponed due to COVID-19. If you did not apply to present as part of this conference on Popular Power/Poder Popular the first time around (2020), now is your chance! We welcome new proposals as well as the presentation of sessions previously accepted for 2020.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What are the COVID-19 vaccine or COVID-19 testing requirements for being onsite at the conference?

Our conference will happen at Loyola University Chicago, and we must comply with the COVID-19 policies of the host university at the time of the conference. This is the current policy relevant to vaccines/testing for campus guests: “All external guests must have proof of vaccination or proof of a negative test in the past 72 hours. If they are under the age of 12, they do not have to be vaccinated or tested.” All vaccines endorsed by the World Health Organization are currently accepted. Please note that this policy might be different by the time we reach the conference, and we will communicate quickly when we are notified of any changes. If you have questions or concerns, please contact us:

I submitted a proposal in 2020 and it was accepted for presentation. Do I need to resubmit that whole proposal again? 

If you already submitted a proposal for a session at the PTO conference in 2020 and it was accepted for presentation, you do not have to prepare a new proposal as long as you still want to do that session or just make minor revisions to it, BUT you do need to complete the brief form here. Please note: Should you not complete this form, we will assume you do NOT plan to present the previously-accepted session and we will not schedule your session.

I did not submit anything in 2020. Can I submit a proposal now? 

Yes! You can do that here.

I want to do the session that was already accepted in 2020, but can I make some changes to it?

If you want to make only MINOR changes (example: slight change to title but still with the same topic), you can indicate those changes when you complete the brief form here. If you want to make major changes to the session (format change, significant theme change, major change of methods), a new proposal is required.

My proposal was accepted in 2020, and I plan to present it, but I also would like to make another proposal now. Can I submit a second proposal? 

Yes. However, depending on session availability and needed areas of content, a second proposal might not be prioritized over those making a first proposal.

My proposal was not accepted for presentation in 2020. Can I submit the same proposal now? 

Yes. You can do so here.

Can I apply to present online if I cannot travel to the in-person conference? 

Yes. This year we will also have an online conference day on May 25, 2022, the Wednesday before the in-person conference, as an option for scheduling sessions by those who are unable to attend in person. When you submit your proposal or officially confirm your intention to present a previously accepted proposal, there will be an opportunity to tell us whether you are applying to present online, in person, etc. Please note: 1) Depending on capacity, we may not be able to accommodate all requests for a specific mode of presentation (online or in person). 2) A portion of the online conference day will conflict with participation in Julian Boal’s in-person pre-conference three-day workshop.

I want to do the session that was already accepted in 2020, but can I request to change it to an online session without a whole new proposal?

Yes, pending online session availability. If you are not making significant changes to your proposal besides requesting to present online, you can simply request to present online when you confirm your intention to present here.

Current Travel and Lodging Information

Travel and lodging information (with even more information to be added soon) can be found here.

PTO 2022 Conference Registration Fees 

Registration will open in early 2022. The following information is provided for planning purposes only, until registration opens officially. Within its limited means, PTO will also have a limited number of scholarships available for registration for the full conference. More information will follow about the scholarship application process to take place in early 2022. Please do not hesitate to contact with questions about registration fees or attendance options.

Registration fee for optional pre-conference workshop with Julian Boal, May 24-26, 2022 (priority registration for those who were registered in 2020, and then registration will open to all): $200 USD per person

Registration Fees for In-person Conference in Chicago, May 26-29, 2022

The registration fees differ for PTO members and non-members, since discounted registration is a benefit for members of PTO. Information on membership costs can be found below. “Regular” registration and “Open Access” membership and registration are self-selected options that will appear on the registration form when registration opens, and they correspond to one’s ability to pay.

Regular Member Registration: 185 USD Early Registration / 215 USD Regular Registration

Open Access Member Registration: 85 USD Early Registration / USD 100 Regular Registration

Non-member Registration: 255 USD Early Registration / 285 USD Regular Registration

High School Student/18 and under: 25 USD Early Registration / 35 USD Regular Registration

Organizational Registration: 675 USD (unlimited) / 760 USD (unlimited)

Online 1-Day Conference Fee. For Wednesday, May 25, 2022 only: 30 USD Registration. We also hope, technology pending, to make the all-conference sessions from the in-person conference available via streaming to those who register for the online conference day and to include access to them as part of the online conference day registration fee.

PTO Membership Fees

Individual membership is $30 USD /person/year (or higher if selected) and organizational membership is $180 USD /org/year (or higher if selected). To become a member, find out more here.





Read more about the 2022 Pedagogy & Theatre of the Oppressed Conference below!

Update on PTO Chicago Conference (New dates: Conference May 26-29, 2022; pre-conference workshop May 24-26)

(español a continuación)

Hello PTO Community!

We hope that you are all as well as it is possible to be right now. Thank you for your patience as we’ve continued to monitor the situation with the COVID-19 pandemic and how it will affect the Chicago conference. We are now able to confirm the following information and newly rescheduled dates:

Ultimately, it will not be possible to have a conference of PTO’s scale on our postponed dates in 2021. As a result, PTO is postponing the 25th conference another year, to May 2022. Loyola University Chicago has agreed to host us again, provided nothing happens with the pandemic that unexpectedly makes that impossible, of course.

These are currently the new dates for the conference: 

Pre-conference May 24-26, 2022

Conference May 26-29, 2022

In the meantime, PTO will continue to hold shorter events and opportunities for connection online. Information about those events is communicated via our website, social media, and our email list. 

Later in the year (no later than September or the beginning of October), we will re-open the submission form for proposals for the conference in 2022. As promised, anyone who was accepted for the original dates in 2020 will still be automatically invited to present their session without having to submit a new proposal. 

Therefore, the options for people who were already accepted will be:

  1. Tell us that they still want to present what they proposed or basically the same thing with only minor modifications (no need to reapply)
  2. Decline or cancel previous acceptance
  3. Submit a new proposal if the session that they want to present has changed 

As promised, we will also accept completely new proposal submissions!

Please note that we expect that, on the final day of the rescheduled conference, Sunday, May 29, 2022, the conference will run longer than it has in the past, with events and sessions continuing throughout that day rather than stopping mid-day. 

The board of PTO is also discussing a range of ways to involve people who cannot attend in person, so there will be ways to connect with aspects of the conference online.

Again, THANK YOU VERY MUCH to all for your patience.

Questions? We have shifted to a new email for the conference (but will also forward email from the one with 2020 in it):

In solidarity,

The PTO Chicago 2021 (now 2022) Local Committee and the PTO Board

Noticias sobre la Conferencia de PTO en Chicago (Nuevas fechas: Conferencia 26-29 de mayo de 2022; taller antes de la conferencia: 24-26 de mayo)

¡Hola, comunidad de PTO!

Esperamos que estén todxs tan bien como sea posible en este momento. Gracias por su paciencia mientras continuamos monitoreando la situación con la pandemia de COVID-19 y cómo afectará la conferencia de Chicago. Ahora podemos confirmar la siguiente información y las fechas recientemente reprogramadas:

En última instancia, no será posible tener una conferencia de la escala de PTO en nuestras fechas pospuestas en 2021. Como resultado, PTO está posponiendo la 25a conferencia un año más, para mayo de 2022. Loyola University Chicago acordó ser el sitio nuevamente, siempre que no ocurra nada con la pandemia que inesperadamente lo haga imposible, por supuesto.

Estas son actualmente las nuevas fechas para la conferencia: 

Pre-conferencia 24-26 de mayo de 2022

Conferencia 26-29 de mayo de 2022

Mientras tanto, PTO continuará realizando eventos más cortos y oportunidades de conexión en línea. La información sobre esos eventos se comunica a través de nuestro sitio web, redes sociales y nuestra lista de correo electrónico.

Más adelante en el año (septiembre o principios de octubre), volveremos a abrir el formulario de propuestas para la conferencia en 2022. Como se prometió, cualquier persona que fue aceptada para las fechas originales en 2020 seguirá siendo automáticamente invitada a presentar su sesión sin tener que presentar una nueva propuesta. 

Por lo tanto, las opciones para las personas que fueron ya aceptadas serán:

  1. Díganos que aún quiere presentar lo que propusieron o básicamente lo mismo con sólo modificaciones menores (no es necesario volver a aplicar)
  2. Rechazar o cancelar la aceptación previa
  3. Presentar una nueva propuesta si la sesión que quiere presentar ha cambiado 

Como se prometió, ¡también aceptaremos propuestas completamente nuevas!

Tenga en cuenta que esperamos que, en el último día de la conferencia reprogramada, el domingo 29 de mayo de 2022, la conferencia se prolongue más que en el pasado, y los eventos y sesiones continuarán durante ese día en lugar de detenerse al mediodía. 

La junta de la PTO también está hablando de una variedad de formas de involucrar a las personas que no pueden asistir en persona, por lo que habrá formas de conectarse con aspectos de la conferencia en línea.

Nuevamente, MUCHAS GRACIAS a todxs por su paciencia.

¿Preguntas? Hemos cambiado a un nuevo correo electrónico para la conferencia (pero también reenviaremos el correo electrónico del correo para 2020):

En solidaridad,

El Comité Local de PTO Chicago 2021 (ahora 2022)  y La Junta de PTO