NET Events and Gatherings

Inspiration On-Demand: Creators in Conversation

In celebration of our 25-year mark, NET has launched a year-long series to ignite the imagination: Inspiration On-Demand: Creators in Conversation. Each month, NET’s very own Board members will join their own mentors and other artists they admire in conversation. We are very excited to begin to archive the incredible legacy of leaders in our field, and hope you will join us to bear witness to these extraordinary artists!

The next conversation in this series will be Friday, April 23, 2021 at 10am PST. NET board member, Todd London (artistic director, educator, essayist, and theater chronicler) will be in conversation with André Gregory,(director, actor, writer, teacher, and painter) co-creator and co-star of the legendary My Dinner with André. This is Not a Memoir is a collaboration between Gregory and London which reflects on a life lived for art. The conversation will focus on Gregory's early ensemble work and there will be time for questions!

Register Here

Todd London's books include An Ideal Theater, The Importance of Staying Earnest, and his most recent novel If You See Him, Let Me Know. An artistic director, educator, essayist, and theater chronicler, he is a winner of the George Jean Nathan Award for Dramatic Criticism and was the inaugural recipient of Theatre Communications Group's Visionary Leadership Award for his contributions to the American theater. He is a proud member of the NET board.

 

André Gregory has been directing in New York for more than half a century. He has collaborated on film versions of his theater productions with Wallace Shawn, Louis Malle, and Jonathan Demme. Gregory, Shawn, and Malle created the now-legendary My Dinner with André. Gregory is also an actor, a writer, a teacher, and a painter.

 

 

 


Inspiration On-Demand: Carrie J. Cole in conversation with Ursula Marcum and Glenn Ricci from Submersive Productions

Our second conversation was Friday, March 26th. For this conversation we were joined by NET board member Carrie J. Cole and Co-Artistic Directors of Submersive Productions, Ursula Marcum and Glenn Ricci

Watch Recording Here

Carrie J. Cole is associate professor, Producing Director, and Assistant Chair, in the Department of Theatre, Dance, and Performance at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. As a scholar, her work concentrates on current and future trends in US theatre, performance, and popular culture, specifically staging science fiction and the fantastic. Dr. Cole’s recent theatre credits include creating a new adaptation of Wedekind’s The Awakening of Spring, directing Sarah Delappe’s The Wolves, Lauren Gunderson’s I and You and Ray Bradbury’s adaptation of his own Fahrenheit 451. She also devised and directed Electriad, which explored the repercussions of war from the perspective of the warrior, the home front, and the displaced. In addition, her reimagining of H. G. Wells’ War of the Worlds, which reflected the events of the second Mars Rover exploration, was staged as part of the Tucson Festival of Books by Arizona Theatre Company. She also has served as Company Manager and Festival Dramaturg for KO Festival of Performance, where she also appeared as part of the ensemble of Katie Pearl’s OK OK. As an advocate for new plays, Dr. Cole regularly produces and directs “Flash Play Festivals”—readings of ten-minute plays written by award-winning authors at both the International Conference of the Fantastic in the Arts and the Other Words Conference. Dr. Cole joined the Board of NET with an amazing cohort in 2020 and is honored to serve as secretary for the organization.

Ursula Marcum is a performing and visual artist who is fed by two distinct practices: one consists of being a part of highly collaborative works on a grand scale, while the other resides in independently creating artwork that is personal, quiet, and celebrates the wonder to be found in small, everyday things. Each practice informs and balances the other. Originally trained as a designer for theater (B.A., Catholic University) and museum exhibitions (M.F.A, George Washington University), she is inspired to tell stories that are a mixture of both the magical and the ordinary.

As the Co-Artistic Director of Submersive Productions, she works with teams of wildly imaginative people to create original, site-specific, immersive worlds where artists and audiences engage together at the intersection of histories, mythologies and the immediate experience. As a puppeteer and visual artist, Marcum works in a small scale in order to establish an intimate, personal connection with audience members. Her puppets and glass artworkzs are grounded in materiality, and celebrate quiet and contemplation.

She believes in the power of art making within a community to imagine something better, together, and bring it into existence. Helping to build a supportive, just and equitable artistic environment in Baltimore is key to her practice, whether large or small.

As a composer, sound designer, performer, lighting designer, and video artist, Glenn Ricci has been working with time-­based media for over three decades. As a founder and Co-artistic Director of Submersive Productions, Glenn has engaged with over one hundred Baltimore artists in a unique and evolving collaborative process that melds design, performance, and world-building to create unique, impactful audience experiences. For the past seven years, Glenn has focused on creating fully immersive artworks and their potential as an unexpected and memorable form of storytelling. By creating experiences that can be explored from many perspectives at once, his work is in constant conversation with the audience, bringing them into the center of the meaning-making process and letting them each construct their own narrative.


Inspiration On-Demand:
Godfrey L. Simmons Jr. in Conversation with Leslie Ishii

Our first conversation was Friday, February 26th. Kicking off this series was NET board member, Godfrey L. Simmons, Jr. in conversation with Leslie Ishii.

Watch Recording Here

Godfrey L. Simmons, Jr. is the new Artistic Director of HartBeat Ensemble, Hartford’s Public Theatre. He is also co-founder of Civic Ensemble, a community-based theatre company in Ithaca, NY. For Civic, he directed Eugene O’Neill’s All God’s Chillun Got Wings and The Next Storm, and appeared in My Children! My Africa!, Fast Blood and his adaptation of Mike Daisey’s The Trump Card. Godfrey was Producing Artist in charge of New Artist Development for Off-Broadway’s Epic Theatre Ensemble, appearing in A More Perfect Union, Widowers' Houses (which Godfrey co-adapted with Ron Russell), and Measure for Measure, among other plays. At Epic, he also co-wrote and starred in a documentary play about the election of President Barack Obama, Dispatches From (A)mended America. Additional New York theatre credits include The Old Settler (Primary Stages), Betty’s Summer Vacation (Playwrights Horizons), Free Market (Working Theater), Leader of the People (New Georges), and microcrisis (Ensemble Studio Theater). Godfrey is a 2012 TCG/Fox Fellow, a participant in the TCG SPARK Leadership Program, and a lifetime member of Ensemble Studio Theatre.

Leslie Ishii (AD, Perseverance Theatre) has directed at Perseverance Theatre, Pangea World Theatre, East West Players; Artists At Play; and more; Oregon Shakespeare Festival:API 2x2 New Works Residency Founder/Co-Producer, Dramaturgy, FAIR Program Recipient, and facilitator OSF’s E/D/I/A Initiative; Native Voices Dramaturgy, Northwest Asian American Theatre.

(Actor) Penumbra; Theatre Mu; Northwest Asian American Theatre; El Teatro Campesino; American Conservatory Theater; Southcoast Repertory Theatre; Broadway.

(National Scope) Consortium of Asian American Theatres & Artists: Board President, Co-Chair Steering Committee: 5th and 6th National Asian American Theatre ConFest; National New Play Network, Membership Committee; National Cultural Navigation Theatre Project for the sustainability BIPOC artists and theatres, Founder; artEquity, core faculty.

Fitzmaurice Voicework, conference organizer, Barcelona, Spain and Vancouver, Canada.

(Affiliations & Awards) Arts For LA ACTIVATE Alumni; Los Angeles County Supervisors’
Cultural Equity Inclusion Initiative Work Groups; Founder/Director, National Cultural
Navigation Theatre Project; New England Foundation for the Arts Capacity Grant; Doris Duke Charitable Foundation National Theatre Grant Recipient; James P. Shannon Leadership Institute; Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Integrity Award; Los Angeles County Teachers Making A Difference Award; SDC E/D/I Standout Moments, 2016, 2017. SDC, AEA, SAG-AFTRA.


NET Community Forum:
Beginning to Heal through Connection

On Friday, January 22nd, NET hosted a Community Forum: Beginning to Heal Through Connection. As we turn towards reopening, NET is mindful of the role ensemble can and needs to play in the healing inside our own community and with broader society. We heard from a group of our Spring 2020 NET/TEN Remote Connection Mini-Grants recipients about the activities they embarked on last year and then opened up the discussion to dialogue with one another. 

Featuring Remote Connections Made By Individual and Ensemble Members:
Jessica Bauman, Adam Cooper-Terán, Duke City Repertory Theatre, Paul Flores,Honest Accomplice Theatre, Ko Festival of Performance, Last Call, Pratik Motwani, SuperGeographic Ensemble Theatre and Rowen Haigh with Women's Theatre Festival

Facilitated by Patricia Garza, NET's Director of Programs & Engagement

  • How can we start to recover from isolation?
  • Where can we focus our work towards racial justice and civic engagement healing?
  • How can we dream and inspire one another this year? What shape is our programming starting to take?

Live Recording Available Now


 

APRIL 13, 2020: Tools for Ensemble Togetherness in a time of Physical Distance

THIS EVENT HAS PASSED. WATCH THE RECORDING.

Facilitated by Alisha Tonsic, Executive Director, NET

  • What are you doing to keep your ensembles connected during this time?
  • What strategies, mantras, ideas can you share with other ensemble theater makers who are struggling to stay connected to one another?
  • In what areas are you still running into road blocks, and could use the support of the larger community to help you feel more resourceful and prepared?

APRIL 20: Can Our Artistry Combat Loneliness?
THIS EVENT HAS PASSED

Facilitated by Todd London (Board Member, NET; Director of Theatre Relations, Dramatists Guild of America; Head of the MFA Playwriting Program, School of Drama, The New School) and Corinna Schulenburg (former NET Board Member; Co-Founder/Creative Partner,Flux Theatre Ensemble; Director of Communications, Theatre Communications Group)

  • How are you finding respite from the inevitable "apart-ness" (loneliness / isolation / disconnection) that this crisis is amplifying?
  • How are you specifically using your artistic instincts, training, tools to address this challenge?
  • Have you had ideas that could use the collaboration of others to get off the ground?

APRIL 27: A New Era of Ensemble Theatre Making
THIS EVENT HAS PASSED. WATCH THE RECORDING.

Facilitated by Claudia Alick, Board Co-President, NET and Executive Producer, Calling Up; and Leah Cooper, Artistic Director, Wonderlust Productions

  • Moving forward, how do we present theatre safely in shared physical space?
  • To that end, if we are still re-adjusting to sharing content in virtual spaces; what is “theatre” if it is not live?
  • How do we shore up our individual and collective reserves and resources for continued crises? How do we support artists ethically, and with generosity and love?

COVID-19 Virtual Town Hall: March 14, 2020
View an archived video recording of the session:

CLICK HERE FOR VIDEO

As our communities manage the spread of COVID-19, and many limit non-essential travel, it's important to make sure the knowledge-sharing doesn't stop, and we take advantage of our technology tools to keep us connected.

While we had to cancel much of NET's EMFUSA2020 activity in Albuquerque during Tricklock's Revolutions festival (and the festival itself was also severely impacted (please see the company's statement on Facebook), we used our platform to host a Virtual Town Hall on March 14th, in partnership with Tricklock, to hear our community's concerns, and begin to assess where NET can be most supportive during this challenging time.

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