Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

Thailand Theatre Media

International Experience Program - Makhampom, Thailand

Faculty of Arts and Education

School of Communication and Creative Industries

Makhampom Applied Theatre Study Tour

Proposed Program

Due to the COVID19 crisis this Program has been postponed until 2021

Join the Makhampom Theatre group on its 20th and final study tour. The 18-day intensive brings participants together in an intensive but playful mix of inter-cultural exchange, community engagement, and performance making. The local environment offers waterfalls, caves, hot springs, and the beautiful Chiang Dao valley. And in engaging with the indigenous partner communities of Pateung Ngam and Pang Daeng Nok, you will be part of an exchange that has been recognised as a model of community empowerment and solidarity.

The program is particularly suited to theatre/acting students as the aim of the program is to provide participants with tools to adapt and apply to practice theatre in different contexts as well as an intense experience of exchange and interaction that raises important, sometimes challenging, questions towards strengthening practice.

A feature of the Makhampom Study Tour is the venue and location. Since being drawn to the incredible landscape and unique community of Chiang Dao in 1998, Makhampom has gradually developed the Makhampom Art Space, into a creative theatre village sitting in a valley at the foot of the stunning Doi Luang mountain. The site has been developed as a community arts space for the people of Chiang Dao, a venue to host friends, partners, and like-minded organizations in Thailand and internationally, and a public space for social enterprise. With two theatre buildings, a guesthouse, kitchen, sculpture garden, café, lakes, and rice fields, the Makhampom Art Space becomes a playground for the Study Tour participants to enjoy, explore, and create. And in the surrounds of Chiang Dao, participants will be given a direct, personal exposure to Makhampom's philosophy, sparking ideas towards creating theatre spaces, developing theatre ensembles, devising community projects, and working internationally.

During the Makhampom Study Tour I discovered new concepts and ideas about not only the world but also myself.  I was presented with new cultures, new ways of making theatre and the most welcoming, wonderful team of people I could ever hope to meet. Jack Bowden, previous program participant

Watch this short video of a true Makhampom experience by a 2014 program CSU participant.

When: Proposed June/July 2021

Number of Places Available: 13 places
This program requires minimum numbers to proceed.

Eligibility: Students enrolled in an undergraduate degree in Charles Sturt's School of Communication and Creative Industries at the time of undertaking the program. Additionally, you must be able to include one of the subjects below as an elective in your degree structure.

Academic Information: Students may be eligible to receive academic recognition for an 8 point subject. Students must liaise directly with their Course Director for approval to include an unspecified subject in their course structure and should do so prior to applying for this program.

Financial Assistance: The advertised program cost is based on the provision of the $450 Vice Chancellor Travel Grant. Eligibility is restricted to Charles Sturt students enrolled in and receiving academic recognition for their participation in the program. This Grant is not paid directly to students but has already been deducted from the program cost.

All funding associated with CSU Global programs (travel grants, scholarships, subsidies and loans) is linked to successful completion of academic and program expectations. Failure to meet these requirements may result in funding being revoked.

Students may also be eligible to receive financial assistance through the Australian Government's OS-HELP loan. OS-HELP is a loan available to eligible Commonwealth Supported students who want to undertake some of their study overseas. OS-HELP can be used for a range of expenses such as airfares, accommodation, and other travel or study expenses.

Eligibility for OS-HELP will be assessed once successful students are selected and is based on a number of criteria.  Acceptance into a CSU Global program does not guarantee eligibility for the loan. Please note, you cannot pay your program deposit through OS-HELP.

Refer to CSU Global's Scholarships and Funding webpage for further information on financial assistance.

Cost: Approximately AUD$1500 (exact costs to be advised on notification of successful application).

Costs should include: In-country program fee, in-country accommodation (dormitory style) and most meals (students assist with meal shopping, preparation and cooking).

Costs do not include: CSU subject fees, airfares, passports, immunisations (if required), visas (if required), local transport, travel insurance, additional meals, recreational activities, souvenirs, gratuities and incidentals.

Please note: This is an individually ticketed program (students to purchase their own flights, travel insurance, visas and passports). 

Application Timeline: continue to the bottom of this page for application link

  • Application closing date: TBA
  • Successful students notified (email): within two weeks of the application closing date
  • $1000 Non-refundable deposit due: within two weeks of notification of successful application
    (You MUST have applied for or obtained your passport by this date. Please note it may take 3-4 weeks to obtain a passport)
  • Full and final payment date: TBA
  • Pre-departure sessions: To be advised.

Further enquiries regarding the application process should be directed to:

Alice Wood
Communications Officer - CSU Global
Charles Sturt University
Phone: (02) 6338 4068

Further enquiries regarding the in-country activities should be directed to:

Richard Barber
Director, Free Theatre

Indicative program outline (subject to change):
1AM: all participants arrive in Chiang Dao by this date - pick up available depending on flight times
PM: Welcome and intro workshop / Makhampom Art Space Walk & Talk / Neighbourhood orientation (bike tour) / Welcome Dinner and cultural night (students perform short piece)
Chiang Mai  / Chiang Dao - Makhampom
2Homeland Mapping & Personal Mapping Workshops, Makhampom presentationMakhampom
3Relaxed Morning, Waterfall & Temple Visit, Community Engagement PreparationMakhampom
4Community Exchange in Pateung Ngam village
(youth workshops, cultural trail, family life, cultural night, homestay)
Pateung Ngam - homestay with local families
5Community Reflection Workshop, Cave & Hot Springs VisitMakhampom
6Thai Theatre Workshops - Thai Gestural Dance, Likay (Thai folk opera), Muay ThaiMakhampom
7Performance Workshops - Image Theatre, 'Junk' music & puppetry, Shadow theatreMakhampom
8Community Performance Devising, Dramaturg & Production Process, Hot SpringsMakhampom
9Storyboarding, Devising & Rehearsal, Dress RehearsalMakhampom
10Rehearsal & Community performance in Pateung Ngam villageMakhampom
11Pang Daeng Documentary, Community Engagement Workshop, Community Exchange
(Pang Daeng children’s troupe, sword dance class, open circus space, community discussion, traditional dinner, cultural night & performance)
12Chiang Mai Free Day 
13Chiang Mai Free Day 
14Introduction to Dialogue Theatre - Scenario & Character, Makhampom ShowcaseMakhampom
15The Dialogue Technique - Dialogue Methods, Q&A, Transformation, RehearsalMakhampom
16Dialogue Theatre Showcase - Performances for Guest AudienceMakhampom
17Evaluation & Farewell PartyMakhampom
18Farewells & DeparturesChian Mai