SDEA held its inaugural conference in 2011 which brought together educators, arts practitioners, social and cultural workers, as well as academics from around the world that use theatre to address educational and social issues in the South East Asian region.

The conference is a platform for practitioners to share their experiences, methodologies and research in the use of theatre in education (schools, adult education, special needs, corporate training), healthcare, social work, public service campaigns and corporate social responsibility projects. Participants are given opportunities to build networks and future collaborations across the region and beyond.

The theme of the fourth conference in 2017 – Future Generations: Projecting Playful Possibilities, pushes new frontiers and embraces the power of the imaginative spirit in theatre for/by young people.

With this theme, SDEA invites you to imagine how we can continue injecting hope, creativity and ethical practice in our work with youths in the context of a changing arts landscape.

The conference is located at Goodman Arts Centre with sessions held in a combination of spaces at Block B, Block O and Block M. The concierge and refreshment area is located at Block O. Conference sessions are held in rooms located all over the Goodman Arts Centre compound as follows:

Goodman Arts Centre

  • Black Box (Block M)
  • Multipurpose Studio 1 & 2 (Block O)
  • Multipurpose Room 1 (Block B, Level 1)
  • Meeting Room 2 (Block B, Level 3)
  • Meeting Room 3 (Block B, Level 3)

All participants are advised to dress comfortably for easy movement and to wear footwear that is easy to remove. All rooms are air conditioned. Look out for signages, maps and docents to guide you on your way to sessions and you might expect to get in some exercise moving from place to place.

The conference opens on the evening of 29 June with a performance, keynote and a networking dinner followed by programme sessions spread across two days: 30 June and 1 July. The order of events for each day is as follows:

Breakout session(s)
Lunchtime Spotlight Performance
Pecha Kucha Presentations
Breakout session(s)
Tea Break
Breakout session(s)

Session choices are varied and spaces are reserved on a first come first served basis. Sessions can be found on the schedule.

Also, click here for location map of the conference venue and spaces.


SDEA is formed
SDEA's first President Jeffrey Tan, considers hosting IDEA 2007. However, the association is too new to take on the task.
SDEA's next President Noorlinah Mohd revives the idea and re-frames it as SDEA's own international conference.
May 9, a focus group discussion is held regarding the frame of an SDEA conference.
  New committee moves the discussion into reality.
December – Organising Committee first meets to decide name and focus for the conference
January - Programme Committee is formed
  March – Meeting with NAC to discuss how SDEA's conference, to be held during the Arts Festival, would be "in association with the Singapore Arts Festival."
  April - Programme Committee begins working on identifying Keynote Speakers & programme structure
  May – International Advisory Panel is confirmed
  Yearlong – Identifying potential speakers & presenters
  September –Programme Structure is unveiled to SDEA members
March 21-24 – Pre-Conference workshops with Prof. Jonothan Neelands
  June 2-5 – Inaugural SDEA Theatre Arts Conference at LASALLE College of the Arts
  July – Appointment of new Programming Committee for 2013 Conference
August – Launch of Proposal Call
  September – Closure of Proposal Call
May 30 – Pre-Conference masterclasses held.
  May 30 - June 2 – SDEA Theatre Arts Conference 2013
Opening Keynote by Dr. Peter O'Connor on May 30
  July – Appointment of new Programming Committee for 2015 Conference
June – Launch of Proposal Call.
  October – Closure of Proposal Call
June 25 – SDEA Theatre Arts Conference 2015 Opening was graced by Guest of Honour Mr. Sam Tan, Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office and the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth.
  June 26 - 28 – SDEA Theatre Arts Conference 2015 at The Arts House.
  October 2015 – Appointment of new Programming Committee for 2017 Conference.
July – Launch of Proposal Call.
  October – Closure of Proposal Call.
22 – 23 June – Pre-conference masterclass to be held.
  30 June – July 1 – SDEA Theatre Arts Conference 2017 Opening Keynote by Purni Morell on June 29.