I love the interdisciplinary, collaborative nature of theater – it organically blends academic disciplines with tactile artistry - history with music, politics with dance, poetry with science - and engages an exploration of the human condition. Whether on a professional stage, in a school gym or a community center, theater has the power to press us all to look into our selves, relationships, communities and our place in the continuum of history.
I'm passionate about my current work developing THE LIVING NEWS PROJECT. Envisioned as a large scale city-to-city theater project, THE LIVING NEWS PROJECT stands boldly on the shoulders of the Federal Theater Project’s “Living Newspapers” of the 1930’s – dynamic travelling productions, created by teams of unemployed journalists and theater artists, challenging citizens to wrestle with issues of the day. The Living News Project shares human stories, examines the nature of truth, news, and "fake news," and investigates what democracy means.
My unusual masters’ degree, in Theology and the Arts, has allowed me to look at theater through a fresh lens by delving into the study of ritual and community life. My community-based work inspired these studies, and in turn, has grown as a result of them.
I have taught and mentored students of all ages in a wide variety of settings. For five years I worked in the Drama Division of The Juilliard School in New York where I taught college level students in a conservatory environment. I've taught adults at the graduate level at two progressive theological schools, and spent three years teaching public speaking to science majors at the University of New England. I was a Senior Lecturer at Columbia College Chicago where I won a teaching award for developing an interactive, humanities-based seminar for students in the visual, performing, communication and media arts. In Chicago, I also served as an Arts Enrichment Volunteer with Chicago HOPES, working with K-8 students who are homeless and in transition.
I have served as Assistant Principal for Arts Education at Manatee School For the Arts, in Palmetto Florida and Founding Director of The Arts Academy at Portland Arts and Technology High School in Portland, Maine, where I collaborated with community partners to establish an innovative, intensive arts program within a vocational/technical school. As Assistant Director for Columbia College Chicago's First-Year Seminar program, I built, developed and taught cross disciplinary curriculum and was a leading member of the college's Teaching Academy. For seven years I was the Artistic Director of The Children’s Theater of Maine, where I successfully transformed a dormant non-profit organization into a vibrant part of the city.