BIPOC Critics Lab Launches New Cohort

January 16, 2022—When my career propelled me to leap from the world of dance to The Public Theater, the powerful impact and influence of reviews by critics became even more clear to me. Not only do reviews help shape the public’s perception of a theatrical production, they also can determine its future. For the most part, the critics for numerous media organizations are both male … Continue reading BIPOC Critics Lab Launches New Cohort

How The Cultural Industry Can Respond To Racial Injustice

August 1, 2021 — I recently had the opportunity to moderate a webinar with a panel of esteemed colleagues working in the field of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) to address “What an Anti-Racist Arts Organization Looks Like and How The Cultural Industry Can Respond To Racial Injustice.” Sponsored by Arts Reach, an association of arts management, marketing and development professionals, the panelists discussed trends, challenges … Continue reading How The Cultural Industry Can Respond To Racial Injustice

Arts Leaders Offer a Vision for the Future

December 20, 2020—I recently had the privilege of moderating a powerful discussion as part of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center’s Standing in Solidarity social justice series, which featured some of the most visionary thinkers in the world of the arts. The theme of the program was inspired by and named after Oprah Winfrey’s two-part documentary, “Where Do We Go From Here?” The audience was … Continue reading Arts Leaders Offer a Vision for the Future

NXTHVN offers Mentorship through Its Fellowship Program; Deadline: 2/21/22

Image credit: NXTHVN Video Screenshot February 13, 2022—I am excited to help spread the word that applications are now being accepted for a residential fellowship in New Haven, Connecticut, for emerging artists and curators. The program is sponsored by the phenomenal arts incubator organization, NXTHVN, which was established in 2019 by artist Titus Kaphar; equity investment advisor Jason Price, and artist Jonathan Brand. Located in … Continue reading NXTHVN offers Mentorship through Its Fellowship Program; Deadline: 2/21/22

Creating the Means to Amplify Our Power

October 17, 2021—In August of 2020, Dr. Durell Cooper saw an announcement on LinkedIn about a global arts conference to discuss the state of the world amidst the pandemic. Not a single Black person was included as a speaker. This event was being organized while the world was still reeling from the murder of George Floyd and record numbers of African-Americans (and other people of … Continue reading Creating the Means to Amplify Our Power

Arts Engines Spotlights The Black Theater Coalition

September 26, 2021 — I recently had the opportunity to listen to an interview conducted by Aaron Dworkin with T. Oliver Reid about the Black Theatre Coalition (BTC). The videocast interview is both informative and powerful, and I urge the readers of Arts & Culture Connections to take the time (about 18 minutes) to watch it at this link. The interview was conducted as part … Continue reading Arts Engines Spotlights The Black Theater Coalition

Resisting the White House Efforts to Dismantle Federal ED&I Programs

I am sure many of you have heard by now about the recent White House memo to cancel diversity training that was issued to all federal agencies throughout the United States. This is likely one of the most blatant acts of systemic or institutional racism that we have ever witnessed; a blatant attempt to distort and dismiss the legitimate demonstrations and calls for equity and … Continue reading Resisting the White House Efforts to Dismantle Federal ED&I Programs

Celebrating Juneteenth as We Continue to Fight for Equality

June 13, 2021—Juneteenth 2021 is turning into one of the biggest national celebrations ever, with growing numbers of states, cities, and corporations recognizing it as a holiday. I am pleased to see that the arts are at the heart of many of the celebrations, including in Galveston, Texas, the birthplace of Juneteenth. Juneteenth commemorates June 19, 1865, the day that an estimated quarter-of-a-million enslaved people … Continue reading Celebrating Juneteenth as We Continue to Fight for Equality

The Resonance of Twilight, Los Angeles, 1992: An Interview with Anna Deveare Smith

March 28, 2021—I recently had the phenomenal opportunity to see an intimate, virtual interview with one of our nation’s greatest artistic treasures—the playwright, actress, author, NYU professor and scholar Anna Deveare Smith, which was sponsored by the Signature Theatre’s Artistic Director’s Circle and conducted by Artistic Director Paige Evans. Credited with creating a new form of theater in which she combines the journalistic techniques of … Continue reading The Resonance of Twilight, Los Angeles, 1992: An Interview with Anna Deveare Smith

What the Arts Can Learn From Our Youth Activists

I am excited by the numbers of young Black Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) activists, supported by young white allies, who are leading the waves of protests and social justice movements that have sprung up across the globe in the wake of the murder of George Floyd. Drawing upon the legacy of the American civil rights movement, these emboldened youth, many of them young women, … Continue reading What the Arts Can Learn From Our Youth Activists