Four Artist Groups Win Grants to Advance Role of Arts in Social Change

HowlRound Announces Winning Proposals for Convenings in Boston

BOSTON—October 3, 2017— HowlRound, a free and open platform for theatremakers worldwide, today announced the selection of four proposals to host convenings with key stakeholders from the theatre community nationwide aimed at advancing the role of the arts as a catalyst for social change.  The convenings will take place from December 2017 to March 2019 at Emerson College in Boston. Portions of each convening will be livestreamed on HowlRound TV at www.HowlRound.com/tv.

HowlRound has hosted twenty convenings to date bringing together a total of over 600 theatremakers on a range of topics including: ensemble theatremaking, the intersection between the non-profit and commercial theatre, the arts and the military, aesthetics of Latinx theatremaking, and the opportunities and challenges facing trans theatre artists, to name a few.

“This group of projects reflects the aggregated expertise and far reach of the theatre commons that makes up HowlRound,” said P. Carl, Co-founder and Director at HowlRound. “Our process is to open ourselves to the resources and thinking that are already at work solving some of our most pressing problems in the theatre and amplify those efforts. This group of convenings will disrupt practices that continue to leave important voices and issues at the margins.”

The winning proposals, selected from a total of 43 submissions following the announcement of the HowlRound Challenge, an open call for ideas earlier this year, are as follows:

Committee for the Jubilee: Planning for a Nation-Wide Festival (December 2017)
Proposed by Rachel Grossman, Aditi Brennan Kapil, Kirk Lynn

The convening will establish a foundation of operations for the Jubilee, a nation-wide festival in 2020/21 celebrating and supporting the work of traditionally marginalized voices intended to change the statistics regarding who gets produced in theaters in the United States.

Theatre in the Age of Climate Change (June 2018)
Proposed by Chantal Bilodeau, Elizabeth Doud, Roberta Levitow

A catalytic conference bringing together leading artists and practitioners working at the intersection of climate change and the arts.

Strengthening Our Circle: Creating National Space for Native American Performance (October 2018)
Proposed by Indigenous Direction (Ty Defoe and Larissa FastHorse), Murielle Borst-Tarrant, New Native Theatre (Rhiana Yazzie, artistic director), Rosy Simas

A Native American performing arts gathering to share and learn from each other, as well as strategize on ways to bring more awareness to the broader population of Native performing artists in the United States including Hawai’i and Alaska.

Deaf Theatre Action Planning Session (March 2019)
Proposed by Tyrone Giordano, Rachel Grossman, DJ Kurs, Ethan Sinnott

A gathering of Deaf theatre producers and administrators from across the country, intended to develop a future-focused, action-oriented plan for creating a national network and training-to-production "pipelines" that foster the long-term education and advancement of all Deaf theatre artists.

The HowlRound Challenge Convenings are made possible by a generous grant from the Barr Foundation. “At this time in our society, artists, arts and creativity are needed more than ever,” said San San Wong, Director, Arts & Creativity at the Barr Foundation. “On critical issues like equity and climate change, they facilitate our comprehension, elevate urgency, and connect ideas and communities. Through the power of HowlRound’s digital platform, these convenings of passionate thought leaders to envision different, better futures will be amplified, and engage communities globally.”

“The opportunity to co-create convenings with this cohort is truly humbling,” said Jamie Gahlon, Senior Creative Producer and Co-Founder at HowlRound. “The skill, commitment, intellect, and creativity each team brings to the table is remarkable and inspiring and we hope the impact of these gatherings will be too.”

For more information about HowlRound convenings visit: http://howlround.com/convenings.

Convening Fact Sheets:

  • Committee for the Jubilee: Planning for a Nation-Wide Festival Fact Sheet
  • Theatre in the Age of Climate Change Fact Sheet
  • Strengthening Our Circle: Creating National Space for Native American Performance Fact Sheet
  • Deaf Theatre Action Planning Session Fact Sheet

About HowlRound
HowlRound, located in the Office of the Arts at Emerson College, is a free and open platform for theatremakers worldwide that amplifies progressive, disruptive ideas about the art form and facilitates connection between diverse practitioners. For more information, visit www.howlround.com.

About the Barr Foundation
The Barr Foundation’s mission is to invest in human, natural, and creative potential, serving as thoughtful stewards and catalysts. Based in Boston, Barr focuses regionally, and selectively engages nationally, working in partnership with nonprofits, foundations, the public sector, and civic and business leaders to elevate the arts, advance solutions for climate change, and connect all students to success in high school and beyond. With assets of $1.7 billion, Barr is among the largest private foundations in New England and has contributed more than $834 million to charitable causes since 1999. For more information, visit barrfoundation.org.

About Emerson College
Based in Boston, Massachusetts, opposite the historic Boston Common and in the heart of the city’s Theatre District, Emerson College educates individuals who will solve problems and change the world through engaged leadership in communication and the arts, a mission informed by liberal learning. The College has 3,780 undergraduates and 670 graduate students from across the United States and 50 countries. Supported by state-of-the-art facilities and a renowned faculty, students participate in more than 90 student organizations and performance groups. Emerson is known for its experiential learning programs in Los Angeles, Washington, DC, the Netherlands, London, China, and the Czech Republic. The College has an active network of 39,000 alumni who hold leadership positions in communication and the arts. For more information, visit emerson.edu.

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For more information contact:
Jamie Gahlon, HowlRound Senior Creative Producer
617-824-3018
Jamie@howlround.com