The Roof is on Fire vs First of May Riots

The Roof is on Fire (p 178)
Suzanne Lacy - In conjunction with TEAM (teens educators artists & media workers)

220 high school students in Oakland, CA sat in parked cars on a rooftop garage and talked to each other about violence, sex, gender, family, and race. There was no script and students spoke openly.

Almost one thousand people were witnesses to the performance including media outlets (was also aired on TV).

(For months leading up to the event, Lacy met with teachers & teens to discuss what issues should be addressed during the event)

Oakland teens were often in the news and depicted in a violent and negative ways. Lacy wanted to "counter misleading media images with empowered, community-oriented actions." 

*Call to action to show that the young people in the area care about opening a dialogue and not just perpetuating violence.

First of May Riots (p 206)
Public Movement (Dana Yahalomi & Omer Krieger)

Commisioned by Hebbel-Am-Ufer theater. Created five radio channels of commentary and music as a soundtrack for the riots in West Berlin. Loaned visitors headsets during the event. 
Listeners could choose from: 
2 sociologists discussing the demonstration while observing it
a live musical performance
a pre-recorded talk by a philosopher
archival material from a past May 1 riot
DJ playing dance music

May Day demonstrations: challenge the city's efforts to silence labor protests. Turned violent.

Allows people who come to consider the protest as a staged performance. Rather than make it a demonstration about issues, it is a demonstration about a demonstration, allowing for reflection about the May Day demonstrations.

Similarities & Differences:
Both works aim to take issues that have become violent or that are depicted negatively and create a calm or quiet space in order to start a period of reflection.

The Roof is on Fire takes a large group of people that have been portrayed negatively in the media and presents them back to the media in a positive light. This forum not only opens up dialogue for issues important to the participants, it allows for the media to see that there is another side to this group of people.

On the other hand, First of May Riots is a more passive experience, calling users to reflect individually about the violence and the idea of protest as a staged performance.