Letters of Support:
My Career Goals:
To create work that wakes white people out of complacency into inspired action.
To open critical conversations about race and privilege through performances that include facilitated post-show discussions and to inspire other white people to examine themselves and their actions.
To continually educate myself on these issues by researching and doing my own personal work around racism.
To continue discovering creative ways to live an artists lifestyle that is financially viable and to inspire our communities to support the arts with their actions, not just their words.
"White fragility is about blindness and refusing to release that comfort. This performance allows us to identify and recognize our complicity. Thank you- it's time to call systemic racism out!" -BOOTSTRAPS Version 1.0 audience member quote
“Are we good white people yet?” is the line in BOOTSTRAPS Versions 1.0 that elicited the most potent feedback from the audiences. Some shows there was a big laughter of recognition, some shows uncomfortable silence. Without fail, it was mentioned in our post-show discussions and launched us into the question: what can YOU (white person) do?
BOOTSTRAPS: An American Fable is a devised theater piece I co-created and performed in this summer as an ArtMonk at The Art Monastery Project Summer Laboratory. This piece challenges audiences to question how we otherize our neighbors, how success is constructed and the role white people can play in perpetuating or dismantling systems of oppression. The Art Monastery Project is an American 501(c)(3) non-profit arts organization dedicated to cultivating personal awakening and cultural transformation through art, community, and contemplation. Over the course of the 10 week residency, my fellow ArtMonks and I devoted our days to the creation of this piece that forced us to dig deep into our own stories as white middle class Americans and question our beliefs and assumptions. We came into the process with tons of questions, and after eight weeks of research, trainings and rehearsals we had no solid answers. However, we had created a powerful show that received enthusiastic support from the communities we shared it with in the following weeks.
Our first tour was a huge success with eight shows in three states:
The Art Monastery Project, Springfield VT
Springfield Community Players, Springfield VT
Earthdance Creative Living, Plainfield MA
Living Arts Collective, Durham NC
The Eco-Institute at Pickards Mountain, Chapel Hill NC
Culture Mill, Saxapahaw NC
We've been invited to perform in New York, Asheville, and the Triangle area in the spring and summer of 2018. We have also received interest from San Francisco. I will be traveling to SFO in early January to connect with these venues and social justice organizations. January 20th and 21st 2018 we have two performances in Manhattan at the 14th St. YMHA where we will premiere Version 2.0.
Version 2.0, developed in October 2017, incorporates more historical context and includes factual educational elements to strengthen the performance.
I have been the main producer of this piece. The press-kits, endless emails with venues, creation of promotional materials was a full time job. For this show to continue touring, I need the behind-the-scenes support of a part-time intern so I can focus on revising and rehearsing.
BOOTSTRAPS: An American Fable has emerged at a critical time in our country's national dialogue about race, historical oppression, and the opportunity for reconciliation. I firmly believe that the arts have a particularly powerful role in cultural change and that I am in a unique position to serve as a performing artist with this particular material. Through many years of racial literacy study, I have gained a personal understanding of the issues and how to approach them in ways that encourage openness and creative, authentic action.
My first residency at The Arts Monastery Project supported my career development immensely and I have never more passionately believed in the art I am creating. This show and this cultural healing work MUST continue. Communities and venues are asking for it. The timing is urgent. My role as an artist is to encourage other (white) people to discover and do their part, whatever that may be, one show at a time.
Travel from NC - MA /VT = $100
Food for December rehearsals = $90
$30/day for 3 days
Food and Lodging in SFO = $300
Travel from SFO - NYC = $300
Food for January performances in NYC = $150
$30/day for 5 days
Administrative Support = $600
$15/hour for 40 hours (10 hours a week for 4 weeks)
Total Budget = $1540