Roundtable

On Street Activism Today: Fireside Lounge, 4:30-6PM

This conference closing roundtable conversation — On Street Activism Today — will bring together an eclectic array of activists, performers, and scholars  to discuss the diversity of tactics and approaches to activist street performance. Roundtable facilitator Professor Laura Levin, and our keynote speakers, Jan Cohen-Cruz and Morgan Jenness will be joined by local activist-performer-scholars Heather Jarvis and Camille Turner.

Participants’ bios:

Jan Cohen-Cruz is director of Imagining America: Artists and Scholars in Public Life, a national consortium of some 80 colleges and universities committed to campus-community partnerships through the arts, humanities and design, located at Syracuse University. Jan wrote Local Acts: Community‑Based Performance in the US, edited Radical Street Performance, and, with Mady Schutzman, co‑edited Playing Boal: Theatre, Therapy, Activism and A Boal Companion: Dialogues on Art and Cultural Politics. As a longtime professor at NYU Tisch School of the Arts, Cohen‑Cruz produced community‑based arts projects  including one on community gardens and another on gentrification. She also directed the minor in applied theatre and Tisch’s Office of Community Connections, and was among the founders of the Department of Art and Public Policy. She recently co‑conceptualized/ co‑initiated HOME, New Orleans, collaborating with local universities, artists, and other residents, experimenting with art’s role in the revitalization of “home” as dwelling, neighborhood, and that city itself.

Heather Jarvis is a queer feminist activist. With experience in gender studies, social work, media and community activism she has spent several years supporting and initiating projects around gender, sexual education and health, anti-oppression and safer spaces for support. She co-founded SlutWalk in early 2011, a small idea that began in Toronto to fight sexual violence and has since spread across the world. Described as an eternal optimist by some who know her, Heather refuses to believe things cannot change.

For over 10 years, Morgan Jenness worked at the Public Theater, under both George C.Wolfe and Joseph Papp in roles ranging from literary manager to Director of Play Development to Associate Producer of the NY Shakespeare Festival. She was also Associate Artistic Director at the New York Theater Workshop, and an Associate Director at the Los Angeles Theater Center in charge of new projects. She has worked with the Young Playwrights Festival, the Mark Taper Forum, The Playwrights Center/Playlabs, The Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Double Image/New York Stage and Film, CSC, Victory Gardens, Hartford Stage, and Center Stage as a dramaturg, workshop director, and/or artistic consultant. She has participated as a visiting artist and adjunct in playwriting programs at the University of Iowa, Brown University, Breadloaf, Columbia and NYU and is currently on the faculty at Fordham University at Lincoln Center, where she teaches Theater History.

Laura Levin is Associate Professor of Theatre at York University. She is the editor of Conversations Across Borders (Seagull) and Theatre in Toronto (Playwrights Canada) as well as several other journal issues on performance and public space (in Theatre Research in Canada, Canadian Theatre Review, and Performance Research). She has published several essays on contemporary theatre and performance art with a focus on performing gender and sexuality, site-specific and urban performance, and intermediality in performance. She is currently editor-in-chief of Canadian Theatre Review and is completing a book on performing camouflage to be published by Palgrave Macmillan.

Camille Turner is the founder of Outerregion, a performance company creating intercultural experiences that disrupt the expected and engage the public in unusual ways; and co-founder of Year Zero One, a digital media organization. She has presented interventions, installations and public engagements throughout Canada, the UK, Senegal, Australia, Cuba, Jamaica, Germany and Mexico. Her most recent work brings hidden and erased histories and geographies to life through participatory events and locative media. HUSH HARBOUR, a sonic walk animates historic Toronto’s Black geographies. TXTilecity, a collaboration with Year Zero One and produced by the Textile Museum of Canada maps the city of Toronto through its textile histories.

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