We’re excited to share two songs from AT BUFFALO as part of “Girls Will Be Girls: Broadway’s Future is Female” on October 18 at Feinstein’s / 54 Below. The producers have arranged for a really fantastic line-up, including pieces from Oceanborn, Fly, Divided, Akira & the Merpeople, Dear Shirley, Wild Oats, Where Angels Fear to Tread, Just Laugh, and Highest Education. For more information and for tickets, see the Feinstein’s / 54 Below website.
I’m pleased to be moderating a roundtable discussion of NYU Tisch’s production of Twelve Angry Animals on Thursday, October 17 at 6PM. The roundtable, which will feature Jessica Grindstaff (Phantom Limb), Naama Harel (Columbia), Catherine Young (Princeton) and Karl Steel (Brooklyn College / CUNY Grad Center) will precede that evening’s performance of the play. The event is free and open to the public. For more details and to RSVP, click here.
On October 16, Min Hyoung Song will share his extraordinary work at the Mahindra Humanities Center at Harvard. His talk is entitled “Everyday Denial and Climate Lyricism” and I will serve a respondent. For more details, see the Mahindra Center’s website.
NYU Tisch’s Department of Drama is proud to present Twelve Angry Animals, an adaptation of Twelve Angry Men made by the internationally renowned Phantom Limb Company. The production imagines a post-apocalyptic future in which a jury of endangered animals is empaneled to judge whether or not humankind is guilty of decimating life on Earth. I’m honored to have served as a dramaturg for this production. For more details, see the Drama Department’s website.
Feminisms Unbound, an initiative of the Consortium for Graduate Studies in Gender, Culture, Women and Sexuality in Massachusetts, has invited me to join Aliyyah Abdur-Rahman, Brian Horton, Lily Mengesha, Sandy Alexandre and Elora Chowdhury for a roundtable at MIT on the visual cultures of human rights. This promises to be an extraordinary conversation, and I’m honored to be a part of it. For more details, visit the GCWS website.
On October 6, I’ll join Westport Country Playhouse’s Associate Artistic Director David Kennedy for a onstage discussion of Lynn Nottage’s Mlima’s Tale. I wrote a short essay about Mlima’s Tale for WCP a few months ago and am thrilled to have the chance to continue the conversation now. The talkback will begin immediately after the 3PM performance of the play. For more information — and to buy tickets — see the WCP website.
I am thrilled to join Manuela Infante and Annie Dorsen, two brilliant performance makers from Chile and the U.S. respectively, for a panel discussion entitled “The Theater Doesn’t Need Us: Performance and the Posthuman” at the Baryshnikov Arts Center in New York on May 3. Our conversation — which will be moderated by Manuela’s English translator, the Latin American theatre scholar Alexandra Ripp — will precede the Friday performance of Manuela’s important piece Estado Vegetal. For more information and tickets, visit the BAC website.
On September 11, Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts and the Programs in Theater and Music Theater will host a reading of Foreign Bodies, a new musical I am developing with Whitney Mosery and Yve Blake. This reading is the culmination of a 2-week workshop with some truly phenomenal Princeton students. For details, see the Lewis Center website.
Zoey and the Wind-Up Boy, the short film I co-wrote with my collaborator Marica Petrey, will be shown at the Ithaca Fantastik film festival as part of their short film competition on November 11 at 2PM. For more details and tickets, visit the Ithaca Fantastik webste.
On Friday, February 3 and Saturday, February 4, at 9:30PM both nights, at PianoFight in San Francisco, Radix Troupe will present an evening of new work. We'll premiere Zoey and the Wind-Up Boy, a new short film I co-wrote with Marica Petrey, and also re-mount Zoey in the Snow, the short play I wrote that inspired the film. We'll cap the evening off with some music and revelry - a new collaboration with the band Girl Swallows Nightingale. For more details, visit the Radix website.
On December 3, 2016, I will share my work on the Tanzanian playwright Ebrahim Hussein at the African Studies Association conference in Washington, D.C on a panel with several distinguished colleagues. My paper is entitled "The Ghost In The Gun Is The Bullet: Ebrahim Hussein, Julius Nyerere and the (Anti-)Politics of the Uncanny." For more details, visit the ASA website.
I am very pleased to have been selected to deliver a plenary paper at the 2016 American Society for Theatre Research (ASTR) conference in Minneapolis on Saturday, November 5. My talk is entitled "Going Ape: Simian Feminism and Transspecies Drag." In it I explore the politics of ape impersonation in the work of performance artists Coco Fusco and Kathryn Hunter. For more details, see the ASTR website.
My short play "The Lunatics" will be produced as part of the Best of PlayGround 20 Festival at the Thick House in San Francisco in June. I couldn't be happier to be working with Jim Kleinmann and the rest of the PlayGround family again. For more information and tickets, see the PlayGround website.
My short play "The Lunatics" - a slightly alternative look at the Apollo 11 moon landing - will be given a staged reading, directed by Jim Kleinmann, as part of Monday Night PlayGround at Berkeley Rep on MLK Day. For more details, visit the PlayGround website.
This year's Modern Language Association Convention - in Austin, TX - will feature a series of exciting conversations on theater and performance organized by Jody Enders and Nadia Ellis. I will be sharing my paper "Routes of Insurgency: Protest and Place-Making in (Post)Colonial Kenya," which explores the legacy of place-based forms of theatrical (and theatricalized) protest in Eastern Africa. To learn more, visit the MLA Convention's website.
On December 13th at 6PM, in Barrydale, South Africa, artists from the world-renowned Handspring Puppet Company and their community partners will stage Die Name Wat Ons Gee, this year's instantiation of the Barrydale Puppet Parade. I am honored to be part of the directing team.
I am very pleased to have the opportunity to share some of my research on blackness and animality at the Humanism and its Prefixes conference at U.C. Berkeley on October 3-4. For more information, please see the conference website. Please do come if you can.
On September 24th at 5:30PM in 340 Moffitt, I'll kick off the Program in Critical Theory's "Animal Futures" Working Group, which I've convened for the 2015-16 academic year, with my paper on "New Naturalisms." This paper explores the aesthetics and politics of wildlife art in the Anthropocene. For more information about my paper, and about the series as a whole, see this news item on the Critical Theory website.
I'm thrilled to be directing a reading of Philip Kan Gotanda's Love in American Times on Wednesday, September 16th at 4PM in Durham Studio Theater at U.C. Berkeley. The reading - which will kick off the Contemporary Drama Working Group's 2015-2016 New Play Reading Series - will feature Berkeley undergraduates with, perhaps, a special guest or two. For more details, visit the CDWG website.
I will be presenting a paper based on my research on Ebrahim Hussein and his 1969 play Kinjeketile at the 2015 Association for Theatre in Higher Education conference in Montreal. My panel is being organized by the Performance Studies Focus Group and is entitled "Remembering, Differently, Towards a Liveable Present." My paper explores the politics of the 1905-7 Maji Maji War as reimagined by Hussein in contradistinction with the nationalist project of Julius Nyerere. Check back soon for more details.
My new play, The Bonapartes, directed by the amazing Whitney Mosery and featuring Lindsay Rico, Becca Foresman and Sean Patrick Murtagh, is running for one night only as part of Ars Nova's ANT Fest. The Bonapartes is based on the incredible (and true) life story of the orangutan that Napoleon Bonaparte and his wife Josephine raised as a human child. June 13th at 7PM in New York City. For more information about the play, visit the ANT Fest website. Buy tickets here. Image courtesy of the artist, the incredible Ming Doyle.
On Wednesday, May 6, at 4PM in Zellerbach Room 7 on the U.C. Berkeley campus, the Contemporary Drama Working Group's Miyoko Conley and Martha Herrera-Lasso will direct an afternoon of readings of short plays by Takeo Rivera and myself. The catch? They've all, at one point or another, been passed over for production. For more information, see the CDWG website. Free and open to the public.
On Thursday, April 23, in honor of Earth Week, the Contemporary Drama Working Group will present the Planet Earth New Play Festival at U.C. Berkeley. I will direct some of the pieces that will be featured in a double header of new-play presentations. One session will go from 4 to 6PM and the second from 8 to 10:30PM, in Durham Studio Theater. More details to follow!
On Sunday, March 8, from 11AM until 1PM, Gowri Vijayakumar and I will lead a workshop in Zellerbach 170 on the U.C. Berkeley campus on a text that we assembled out of coroner's reports, courtroom testimony and newspaper articles pertaining to the deaths of black people - including Emmett Till, Oscar Grant and Trayvon Martin - at the hands of the police or armed vigilantes. How do we imagine movement and performance out of this horrific archive? For more details, see here.
I am very happy to announce that I will be directing the first play in the CDWG New Play Reading Series Spring 2015 season: You Mean To Do Me Harm, by Christopher Chen. It's a whip-smart piece about (mis)communication and relationships and it's well worth your time. Wednesday, February 11 at 4PM in Durham Studio Theater. Free and open to all. For more, visit the CDWG website.
On December 8th, at 11AM, I will be sharing my dissertation research as part of the Department of Theater, Dance & Performance Studies' Fifth-Year Talk series. I will be speaking about the research I've conducted at the Nairobi National Museum and the performative role the Museum played in Kenya's transition from colonialism to its various post-s. The lecture will take place in the seminar room in Dwinelle Annex.
I am very pleased to get to direct the Contemporary Drama Working Group's reading of my friend Martha Herrera-Lasso's extraordinary play Frente al Mar on December 3rd. For more details about the play and the others we'll be reading as part of the New Play Reading Series, see the CDWG website.
I am honored to have been selected to share my research on a plenary panel at this year's American Society for Theatre Research conference in Baltimore. My panel is entitled "Non-Humans and Political Formations" and I will be presenting on my dissertation research in East Africa. The working title of my paper is "Remains of the Wild: Pre- and Non-Human Figures of the (Post-)Colonial in the Nairobi National Museum." See the conference website for more details.