Prof. Tom Scholte (BFA, MFA University of British Columbia) is an internationally recognized actor, writer, director, producer, director in the realms of Theatre and Film whose work has been seen in such venues as the Sundance, Berlin, Rotterdam, and Toronto International Film Festivals and is, also, vice-president-elect of the American Society for Cybernetics. He teaches artists for both stage and screen in UBC’s Department of Theatre and Film. He also trained in the methods of Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed with David Diamond’s Theatre for Living with whom he went on to co-create and appear in šxʷʔam̓ət (home); a Forum Theatre piece exploring blockages to true and honourable reconciliation between Canada’s settler and indigenous peoples.
In 2017, Prof. Scholte became the Faculty Lead/Artistic Director of Conflict Theatre@UBC; a partnership between his home department and UBC Human Resources with strong connections to UBC’s Office of Equity Inclusion. Under the auspices of this program, Prof. Scholte has undertaken much of his research in the development of a new practice called Systems Theatre. Combining further adaptations to Boal/Diamond’s Forum Theatre approach with analytical tools and methods from the interdisciplinary realms of cybernetics and systems theory, this research program is aimed at the development and application of new modes through which to model complex social systems and to, literally, “rehearse” interventions at key leverage points that might produce more desirable outcomes for all stakeholders. He has written about his work in such journals as Kybernetes, Constructivist Foundations, Futures, and the Journal of Systemics, Cybernetics, and Informatics. In the spring of 2021, Prof. Scholte will defend his PhD dissertation on Systems Theatre in the Centre for Systems Studies at the University of Hull (UK).