2016 Helsinki Talks

The Empire Larps Back – Larson Kasper and Kristina Leipoldt

Tina Leipoldt and Larson Kasper introduce a project where they together with Palestinian larp designer colleagues taught larp design to Syrian refugees in Turkey.

They talk about lessons learned (like “war stories” being a really inappropriate term for “larp anecdotes”) and introduce three of the larps designed by the students, the feminist Fairies and Frogs; Death of a Martyr, about dealing with grief without enlisting to fight; and Damascus 2025, about a hypothetical peace and feelings around having fled the country. The talk ends with a greeting from Basem, a Syrian larprunner.

(There is a joke in the talk which makes more sense if you know it was recorded on March 8, International Women’s Day).

Kristina (Tina) Leipoldt has been doing larp as long as she is a professional humanitarian. Combining these two interests became a logical thing once she realized that Edu-larping found more and more prospects. Besides designing and (co-) producing social-critical larps and mini-larps – initially only for the German audience – such as Kommissar Schmidt (2005), The Living Dead (2010), Welcome to Wandaland (2010) and KNB109M (2012), Tina stuck her nose also into training scenarios. She convinced her employer to use larp as a tool to train Syrian peace activists and social workers as well as promoting it as an “in house” technique to train multi-ethnic teams, working in complex humanitarian and crisis settings, in diversity and other funky stuff.

Larson Kasper is German larper and educator. Whenever possible he combines passion and profession into Edu-Larp. He has been part of different teams, writing and producing larps from 3 to 300 players such as the Aelm-Arthosia Series (1999-2002) and the KultUr Series (2004-2006), yksi/üç (2009), Welcome to Wandaland (2010) and KNB 109 M (2012). He is one of the founders of the larp-catering-crew ‘KampfKüche’, a jack-ass larp photographer and did different larp projects for both, traumatized kids and those with conduct disorder. He followed Kristina Leipoldt to Gaziantep to find out about the beauty of Syrian larp.

Promoting Larp in New Places – Riad Walid Mustafa