Speaking of Change brings together 5 compelling leaders to share short, personal true stories on a revelatory transformation or adaptation to change in their lives & work in a format is inspired by PechaKucha & The Moth.
Vancouver-based, award winning theatre artist Carmen Aguirre
Curator, producer, director, actor & interdisciplinary artist Norman Armour. co-founder & executive director of the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival.
Native Earth Performing Arts Artistic Director Tara Beagan.
Liz Engelman, freelance dramaturg, LMDA past president & board member, NNPN advisory board member & member ITI New Project Group.
Rebecca Novick, director of the Triangle Lab, a joint program of Intersection for the Arts & the California Shakespeare Theater aimed at changing who participates in theater-making & how they participate.
Opening Keynote Address 2:00 PM — 3:15 PM, May 8 2013
Don M. Randel will give the keynote address that will launch Opera Conference 2013 with a powerful articulation of the value of the arts. Randel is the former president of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, a musicologist and scholar, former president of the University of Chicago, and one of our field’s most eloquent spokespersons.
Harnessing the Power of Learning 3:30 PM — 5:00 PM, May 8 2013
Douglas McLennan, founder and editor of ArtsJournal and dynamic Opera Conference 2012 keynote speaker, returns to lead a participatory session that will demonstrate the power of crowd-sourced learning to inform and engage audiences at all levels of experience. His presentation will introduce the latest in open-source technology and distance learning
Thursday, May 9
Opera Out of Bounds in the Opera House 9:00 AM — 10:30 AM, May 9 2013
The Robert L.B. Tobin Director-Designer Showcase 3:30 PM — 5:00 PM, May 9 2013
The Robert L.B. Tobin Director-Designer Showcase is a biennial program offered as part of OPERA America’s continuing effort to foster promising opera artists. Working from a diverse list of American operas, emerging director-designer teams were asked to submit a production proposal including narrative, research images and/or design sketches. The finalists listed below received a stipend to create more complete renderings and models for their concept. Finalist teams will present their proposals and models during this special session. After the presentations, the creative teams will be available to answer questions and network with conference registrants.
Silent Night (Kevin Puts/Mark Campbell)
Director: George Cederquist
Set & Costume Designer: Marianna Csaszar
Lighting Designer: Sarah Hughey
Elmer Gantry (Robert Aldridge/Herschel Garfein)
Director: Stephanie Havey
Set Designer: Patrick Rizzotti
Costume Designer: Megan Spatz
Lighting Designer: Brandon Mitchell
The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny (Kurt Weill/Bertolt Brecht)
Director: Walker Lewis
Set Designer: David Meyer
Costume Designer: Grace Trimble
Susannah (Carlisle Floyd)
Director: Mo Zhou
Set Designer: Tim Brown
Costume Designer: Lisa Loen
Lighting Designer: Yi Zhao
Friday, May 10
Achieving Boundless Impact 9:00 AM — 10:45 AM, May 10 2013
Adaptive changes should be integral to the work of every organization. Learn from a wide variety of leaders from within and outside the arts, who have extended civic impact, built customer loyalty and explored the very nature of innovation itself. With these powerfully honed presentations, expand your thinking about what is possible for your company.
Saturday, May 11
Closing Keynote Address 9:00 AM — 10:30 AM, May 11 2013
The conference concludes with a closing breakfast and keynote address by San Francisco Opera General Director David Gockley, a dynamic leader of one of the nation’s most important companies. Gockley’s dedication to making opera relevant to the broadest possible public continues to expand the impact of the art form. Members will learn from his powerful ideas and join together to recognize the accomplishments of leaders in the field who are celebrating their 10th and 25th anniversaries.
A provocative blog post making one case for a National American Theater -
Magda Romanska posts a wide-ranging, historic, international perspective on American theater vs. national theater traditions. Here’s an excerpt, read the full post here:
“…. In the U.S., theatre’s function as a marker and maker of national identity has been mostly taken up by Hollywood …. In the popular imagination, theatre remains either a form of commercial entertainment or a function of private expression.Yet, with the increased balkanization of our social and linguistic sphere and the increased bifurcation of our political landscape, an all-inclusive, national theatre, because of its liveness and physical propinquity, can provide the kind of much-needed Socratic dialogue of sustained compromise that’s absent from our public spaces, both actual and virtual.
Without the heavy subsidies that made that dance possible for European theatres, American theatre institutions (by which I mean most – not all – regional theatres) have been confounded by their own contradictions. Freed from the responsibility to speak for the people, they have mostly dissolved into stratified corporate structures, whereas the vision of the artistic director has become the singular vision demanding to be supported by the state and its audiences. Without a history of heavy state funding of its performing arts, and thus, without a history of negotiating the relationship between its artistic interests and the state’s national interests, American theatre is caught in a cognitive loop, demanding, on the one hand, funding from the state and, on the other, the freedom to exist in opposition to the state, while simultaneously preserving the Romantic allure of the theatre artist as the spiritual leader and conscience of the nation. As a result, while aspiring to reconcile these mutually exclusive objectives vis-à-vis a free market economy, American theatre find itself suspended in a stratified corporate structure, whereas the theatre’s implicit mission is to be an extension of the voice and vision of its artistic director, who expects and demands the kind of support – financial and otherwise – of his voice and vision once afforded by the royal likes of Louis XIV.
The best example of this phenomenon is the recent short-lived outburst over Guthrie’s all-male, all-white season, so much at odds with its much-lauded explicit mission of cultural diversity, yet barefacedly demanding to be supported by its audiences and taxpayers. Since there is no tradition of national theatre as such, Guthrie’s government support comes without any implicit or explicit obligation to express the national identity and the voice of the people. Since the government funding is insufficient to bribe the artists into submission, there is no tacit agreement of any kind between the theater and the state. Thus, it’s only logical that the artistic director feels fully entitled to treat the theatre in his care as an extension and expression of his own white, male identity….”
Magda Romanska is an award-winning writer, theatre scholar, & dramaturg. A former exchange scholar at the Yale School of Drama & fellow at the Mellon School of Theatre & Performance Research at Harvard University, Romanska teachers courses in Theatre History, Theory, & Dramaturgy at Emerson College in Boston, MA. She is a research associate at Harvard University’s Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, a member of the Literary Managers & Dramaturgs of the Americas, & a recipient of the 2011 Aquila Polonica Article Prize & the 2010 Gerald Kahan Scholar’s Prize.
Opera America says: “Renée Fleming swears by Pilates while other singers are yoga devotees. Some opera directors won’t travel without their P90x DVDs. Most pianists won’t go near any form of exercise that could injure their hands. What is the best way to train your body to support your art and your health? How do you train mentally to perform at your peak? And how can you maintain a healthy mind and body when you are traveling nonstop or juggling a very busy schedule?
The challenges of staying sane and healthy while pursuing a career in opera are numerous. At this Making Connections session, a panel of experts will share their wisdom on how to stay grounded, fit and fulfilled on your path to success. Performance psychologist Dr. Noa Kageyama, Alexander Technique teacher Lori Schiff, and certified personal trainer and voice teacher Claudia Friedlander join yoga instructor and moderator Megan Young in a discussion that will explore how to create your own physical and mental routine for peak performance onstage and off.”
will be held Tuesday November 13 3-5pm Eastern Time – join in person or online! Online chat to follow!
Chamber Music America’s First Tuesdays workshop (“Internet for Musicians 201″) has been rescheduled for Tuesday, November 13, at Saint Peter’s Church in Manhattan, 3:00-5:00 p.m. Join vocalist/composer Carla Lynne Hall for an overview of Internet promotion, including branding and communication strategies. RSVP to attend in person.
WATCH the Livestreamed Panel: Social Practice & the Arts
October 27 4:30-6:00pm
Join Culturebot.com for a panel featuring a discussion on current socially engaged practices in the arts. Part of Undesirable Elements Festival: Real People. Real Lives. Real Theater.
Michael Rohd, Artistic Director, Sojourn Theatre
Shay Wafer, Executive Director, 651 Arts
Amy Smith, Founder and Co-Director, Headlong Dance Theater
Gonzalo Casals, Director of Education & Public Program, El Museo del Barrio
Ping Chong, Artistic Director, Ping Chong + Company
Saturday, October 27, 2012
Ellen Stewart Theatre
66 E. 4th Street
AND Livestreamed through CulturehubIn 1992, Ping Chong was working on a visual art installation at Artist Space, titled “A Facility for the Channeling and Containment of Undesirable Elements,” when the curator asked him to create an accompanying performance piece. Chong gathered a group of multilingual individuals and the first Undesirable Elements performance was born.Culturebot.org moderates this panel event which revisits the interdisciplinary roots of Undesirable Elements by inviting practitioners from theater, dance, media and visual arts to participate in a discussion on current socially engaged practices. This event will be livestreamed through Culturehub.
For background, culturehub recommends reading these two articles:
More information about Undesirable Elements: Real People. Real Lives. Real Theater: pingchong.org/uefest.
follow Ping Chong + Co. on Twitter @pingchongco and Facebook at www.facebook.com/pingchongco.The panel is free to attend but if coming in person, please reserve your spot here: https://web.ovationtix.com/trs/pe/9722142.All attendees of the panel receive a $5 discount to the performance of Secret Survivors on 10/27 following the panel. Please use the code PANEL when reserving tickets to the performance.
El Museo del Barrio
Gonzalo Casals joined El Museo del Barrio in September 2006, where he currently serves as Director of Education & Public Programs. Casals developed exciting new programs, drawing in new audiences and cultivating new stakeholders for the institution. He has led the department in the development of a new approach to cultural production, in which the Museum’s resources are used as a tool to foster cultural empowerment and understanding. Casals truly believes that museum should be an active participant in civic life, while providing a space for its constituents to learn, reflect and impact the communities they belong to.
Ping Chong + Company
Ping Chong, Artistic Director of Ping Chong +Company, is an internationally acclaimed theatre director, playwright, video and installation artist, and a seminal figure in the interdisciplinary theater community. In 1992, Ping Chong created the first work in the Undesirable Elements series. Since then there have been nearly 50 productions in communities around the world. Among his many honors and awards, he has received a Guggenheim Fellowship, two BESSIE awards and two OBIE awards, including one for sustained Achievement in 2000. In 2006, Ping Chong was named a USA Artist Fellow in recognition of his contributions to American arts and culture.
Michael Rohd is founding artistic director of Sojourn Theatre, a thirteen year old ensemble-based company and a 2005 recipient of Americans for the Arts’ Animating Democracy Exemplar Award. He devises and directs around the nation, received a 2010 Chicago Jeff Award for Best New Work, is on faculty at Northwestern University, and wrote the widely translated book Theatre for Community, Conflict, and Dialogue. His work with Sojourn, other theaters and in non-arts sector settings focuses on social and civic practice projects through collaboratively designed arts-based engagement and participation strategies. He leads the recently formed Center for Performance and Civic Practice.
Headlong Dance Theater
Amy Smith is a founder and Co-Director of Headlong Dance Theater, a Philadelphia-based contemporary dance company. Since 1993, Headlong has created collaborative dance theater works, and toured nationally. Recent projects include This Town is a Mystery, an ambitious project that spans the breadth of Philadelphia, bringing audiences to homes for performances by the members of the household, followed by a communal dinner; and Red Rovers, a performance and fake rover driver conference. In addition to her artistic work, Amy is Finance Director for Headlong, and often works with younger artists and companies in Philadelphia, helping them increase their financial literacy.
Shay Wafer, Executive Director 651 ARTS has demonstrated a stalwart dedication to the arts and community development, with a focus on African-American programming, community engagement and arts education. In 2007, Shay became the founding Vice President of Programs for the August Wilson Center for African American Culture. Prior to the August Wilson Center, she served for six years as the managing director of Cornerstone Theater Company in Los Angeles, California- her hometown. She also served as the Managing Director of the St. Louis Black Repertory Company and LA Theatreworks. She was a founding partner of Marla Gibb’s Crossroads Arts Academy and Theatre in L.A., as well as the co-founder of Colored Girl Productions.
Culturebot.org is a website devoted to cultural critique and the contemporary performing arts. Through previews, interviews, points of view and reviews, Culturebot provides a platform for dialogue and conversation around the performing arts, fostering new voices in critical writing and supporting thoughtful investigation of artists working across disciplines.