fbpx The National Performance Network 2018 Annual Conference | HowlRound Theatre Commons

Livestreamed on this page Friday 14 December to Saturday 16 December 2018

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Friday 14 December to Sunday 16 December 2018

Add to Calendar

The National Performance Network 2018 Annual Conference

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Friday 14 December to Sunday 16 December 2018

The National Performance Network presents their Annual Conference livestreaming on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv from Friday 14 December to Sunday 16 December 2018. 

Every year, NPN brings together 350+ arts leaders from around the country to explore building a more just and equitable world through the arts. This isn’t your typical conference experience – it’s a vibrant exchange of ideas that includes plenaries, sessions, workshops, performances, tours and special events. Come ready to learn, connect and be inspired by our community of creative minds. 

This year’s gathering is truly special. After a months long strategic planning process, the 2018 conference marks the start of a new chapter for our network, comprised of 77 Partner organizations and our diverse community of fearless artists and colleagues working in communities across the country.

Pittsburgh provides a fitting backdrop for this important moment. Local artists, cultural organizations and activists are playing a crucial role it the city’s revitalization. Our partner at Kelly Strayhorn Theater and host committee of local arts leaders are our guides to the city, highlighting the people, places and experiences that color the Pittsburgh arts landscape.

Two rivers meet in this “City of Bridges” to create a third, a symbol of the spirit of convergence and collaboration that gives life to our work. This year’s conference will feature more opportunities than ever to connect – with the local community, with each other and with our mission. Sign up for our newsletter and follow us on social media for the latest conference updates, and send your questions to [email protected]

Friday 14 December

Opening Session & Art Burst
6 a.m. PST (San Francisco) / 8 a.m. CST (Chicago) / 9 a.m. EST (Pittsburgh)

We’ll kick things off with welcoming remarks and Art Bursts, short performances by local and national artists. 

In the Works
7:45 a.m. PST (San Francisco) / 9:45 a.m. CST (Chicago) / 10:45 a.m. EST (Pittsburgh)

“In the Works!” provides a lively forum for artists, Partners and colleagues to share brief, 60-second presentations describing new projects at any stage of development. This is an opportunity to discuss new commissions or creative works that are currently being worked on and in need of collaborators, producers and artistic guidance.

Artist/Presenter Dialogues in a Time of Crisis
11:30 a.m. PST (San Francisco) / 1:30 p.m. CST (Chicago) / 2:30 p.m. EST (Pittsburgh)

In this time of acute upheaval, oppression, violence, global threats and other crises, the social meaning and sense of identity of our dance, theatre, music, and performance art are as impactful as ever. For better or worse, audiences are primed for the work we present on stage and the experiences we provide off stage in community and educational settings. In response, this collective idea-sharing and brainstorming session is designed for performing artists and presenters asking vital questions and searching for collaborative answers: What are the urgencies facing performing artists and presenters in our historical moment? What movements, images, sounds, and stories are engaged artists called to create, and how do presenters see their roles and responsibilities changing? What solutions are we capable of embodying for audiences, and how can artists and presenters innovate together to nurture and transform the performing arts landscape? For two hours, we will identify the most pressing issues for participants in the room, and then work on each in breakout groups, making safe spaces of difference, revealing her/histories, sounding out positive and proactive measures, and composing and choreographing responses as well as simple nuts and bolts gestures. Each group will then present their “solution,” and we’ll finish with final individual or group commitments to some form of implementation.

Art Talks & Art Bursts
1:30 p.m. PST (San Francisco) / 3:30 p.m. CST (Chicago) / 4:30 p.m. EST (Pittsburgh)

We’ve asked artists to tell us about themselves, their art and how their work and lives intersect with activism—all in 10 minutes. The session will conclude with an Art Burst, a short performance by a local artist.

Featuring Gunner Jules Krogman, Tom Hubbard, Blak Rap M.A.D.U.S.A, Mauricio Salgado and Arielle Julia Brown, Lois Weaver

Live & On Stage: Pittsburgh
5 p.m. PST (San Francisco) / 7 p.m. CST (Chicago) / 8 p.m. EST (Pittsburgh)

The Pittsburgh edition of our signature production showcases six local artists and companies.

Saturday 15 December

Peer to Peer Workshops
7 a.m. PST (San Francisco) / 9 a.m. CST (Chicago) / 10 a.m. EST (Pittsburgh)

Professional development sessions for artists, by artists.

Idea Forum: LANE Live!
10:30 a.m. PST (San Francisco) / 12:30 p.m. CST (Chicago) / 1:30 p.m. EST (Pittsburgh)

Leveraging a Network for Equity (LANE) is an NPN initiative that brings together extraordinary leaders from arts and culture organizations to collectively address racial and geographical imbalance in the field. LANE is proud to launch its new podcast with a live recording highlighting the voices and experiences of leaders in the program’s Alpha Cohort. As the organizations approach the final chapter of their four-year journey together, they’ll share lessons and answer questions from fellow cohort members, the broader Network and beyond. Cohort members include: Junebug Productions (New Orleans), Su Teatro (Denver), Carpetbag Theatre (Knoxville, TN), Central District Forum of Arts & Ideas (Seattle), MACLA / Movimiento de Arte y Cultural Latino Americana (San Jose, CA) and The Myrna Loy Center (Helena, MT).

Sunday 16 December

Art Slam!
6 a.m. PST (San Francisco) / 8 a.m. CST (Chicago) / 9 a.m. EST (Pittsburgh)

This is an opportunity to experience a vast array of artist’s work in a short amount of time. Eighteen local and national artists shared slides of their work as well as what inspired them.

Art Talks & Closing Remarks
7:50 a.m. PST (San Francisco) / 9:50 a.m. CST (Chicago) / 10:50 a.m. EST (Pittsburgh)

We’ve asked artists to tell us about themselves, their art and how their work and lives intersect with activism—all in 10 minutes. They get the last word before we close things out.

About HowlRound TV

HowlRound TV is a global, commons-based peer produced, open access livestreaming and video archive project stewarded by the nonprofit HowlRound. HowlRound TV is a free and shared resource for live conversations and performances relevant to the world's performing arts and cultural fields. Its mission is to break geographic isolation, promote resource sharing, and to develop our knowledge commons collectively. Participate in a community of peer organizations revolutionizing the flow of information, knowledge, and access in our field by becoming a producer and co-producing with us. Learn more by going to our participate page. For any other queries, email [email protected], or call Vijay Mathew at +1 917.686.3185 Signal/WhatsApp. View the video archive of past events.

Bookmark this page

Log in to add a bookmark

Find all of our upcoming events here.

Upcoming Events


Add Comment

The article is just the start of the conversation—we want to know what you think about this subject, too! HowlRound is a space for knowledge-sharing, and we welcome spirited, thoughtful, and on-topic dialogue. Find our full comments policy here

Newest First