A year of social isolation and political upheaval has changed the way we think about theater. How did we get here? And how will the theater evolve in the wake of Covid-19?
Join us for a free three-part digital series of conversations exploring the past, present, and future of theater during moments of social inflection, curated by The Public Theater. Moderated by Stellene Volandes, Editor in Chief of Town & Country and Editorial Director of Elle Decor, these conversations pose fundamental questions about the art form. What are the historical forces that created the modern theater, and how in turn has theater’s role in our society helped shape our culture at large? How has the last year upended the way artists work? Who will carry theater into the future?
Making a gift today helps shape the stories of tomorrow. Please consider donating to The Public Theater and support the care of our artistic community and the creation of groundbreaking theater for generations to come.
Mar 17, Part I: Past — We Have Been Here Before
Oskar Eustis and Patrick Gaspard with Stellene Volandes
We Have Been Here Before will feature Oskar Eustis, Artistic Director of The Public Theater, and Patrick Gaspard, Cultural Ambassador and Former President of the Open Society Foundations, in an intimate 1:1 conversation, discussing how theater has uniquely responded to — and been shaped by — periods of social change and challenge. From Athenian drama, to protest performance, to the role of storytelling in the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission and beyond, Oskar and Patrick will explore how theater is both changeable and constant.
Apr 26, Part II: Present — Culture and Crisis
Oskar Eustis, Nataki Garrett, Maria Manuela Goyanes, and Kwame Anthony Appiah with Stellene Volandes
We are in a moment of evolution in the American theater — reconceiving the very nature of our work amid a worldwide pandemic. It is a period of meaningful and sustained reckoning, one that asks: Who is your true community? How do we create better, more inclusive organizations? What do we want to give to the next generation of artists and audiences? How can our government better support the arts workers who tell our country’s story? Join Public Theater Artistic Director Oskar Eustis, Oregon Shakespeare Festival Artistic Director Nataki Garrett, Woolly Mammoth Artistic Director Maria Manuela Goyanes, and cultural theorist and philosopher Professor Kwame Anthony Appiah for a conversation about the how they have adapted their leadership and deepened their practice in 2020-21.
May 28, Part III: Future — Where Do We Go Now?
The future belongs to artists. WHERE DO WE GO NOW? presents an unbridled forum for a group of innovative and incisive artists, playwrights, organizational partners, and visionaries to gather and explore what comes next. Participants include Public Theater Resident Director/Associate Artistic Director Saheem Ali (Merry Wives; Romeo y Julieta; Shipwreck; Fires in the Mirror); celebrated playwright Suzan-Lori Parks (Topdog/Underdog; 365 Days/365 Plays; The Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess; Father Comes Home From The Wars (Parts 1, 2 & 3); White Noise); brilliant theater and film director/devisor/dramaturg Mei Ann Teo (Dim Sum Warriors; The Paper Dreams of Harry Chin; Building a Character); and innovative director/playwright/activist Stevie Walker-Webb (Ain’t No Mo’; One in Two; Whipping Man). As we return to a reality where wide-scale live performance is once again possible, what do the artists — the drivers, doers, and dreamers of the form — want the world to look like? Join us to discuss theater’s next act.
92Y needs your help. We are facing tremendous financial losses due to COVID-19. Your ticket purchase helps sustain our beloved institution and supports the creation of new, online programming that will bring comfort and inspiration to our community. Please consider donating today at 92Y.org/HelpNow. Thank you.