fbpx SEGAL TALKS: Tony Waag, Acia Gray, and Deborah Mitchell | HowlRound Theatre Commons

Livestreamed on this page on Monday 20 July 2020 at 9 a.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 11 a.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 12 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 17:00 BST (London, UTC +1) / 18:00 CEST (Berlin, UTC +2).

United States
Monday 20 July 2020

SEGAL TALKS: Tony Waag, Acia Gray, and Deborah Mitchell

An update on the situation for theatre artists in the United States

Monday 20 July 2020

The Martin E. Segal Theatre Center presented SEGAL TALKS: Tony Waag, Acia Gray, and Deborah Mitchell livestreamed on the global, commons-based, peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Monday 20 July 2020 at 9 a.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 11 a.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 12 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / 17:00 BST (London, UTC +1) / 18:00 CEST (Berlin, UTC +2).

Acia Gray. As a soloist, choreographer and master teacher, Ms. Gray has toured extensively across the U.S. and abroad as a tap dance artist since 1983 and in 1989 co-founded Tapestry Dance Company in Austin, TX with Deirdre Strand and currently serves as Producing Artistic Director & Artistic Director of The Soul to Sole Tap Festival. A graduate of The American Academy of Dramatic Arts/NYC, Ms. Gray has shared the stage with numerous tap legends and contemporaries since chosen to work with the legend Charles ‘Honi’ Coles in America’s first creative residency for tap at The Colorado Dance Festival 1989 and again with Jimmy Slyde in 1990. Her book The Souls of Your Feet – A Tap Dance Guide for Rhythm Explorers has been translated in the Czech Republic and China and has been an Amazon.com Bestseller in its category since 1998. Her numerous awards include the prestigious “Hoofer Award” by The American Tap Dance Foundation and she was honored as a premiere member of the Austin Arts Hall of Fame in 2002. She was also nominated for a Princess Grace Award in the early 1990’s, served on the Steering Committee of The International Tap Plan and served as Director of The International Tap Association from 2008-2018. and honored at the 2018 Dance USA Conference. Her work The Souls of Our Feet - A Celebration of American Tap Dance was chosen as an NEA American Masterpiece production and toured throughout the US, Canada, and China from 2009-2012. She can also be seen in the tap documentaries A Class Act: The Magic of Honi Coles, Tap or Die, Thinking on Their Feet - Women of the Tap Renaissance and Passing it Forward produced by PBS/Arts In Context. Ms. Gray is also proud to be a 2019 Austin Creative Alliance Honoree.

Deborah Mitchell celebrates 26 years as Founder and Artistic Director of New Jersey Tap Dance Ensemble. Ms. Mitchell has a rich, extensive background and career with the art form of tap dancing. As protégé of Leslie “Bubba” Gaines of the Copasetics, this award winning tap professionals credits include The Cotton Club Motion Picture, Tony-Award Winning Broadway Production Black and Blue, PBS Great Performances and international tours with the legendary Cab Calloway performing with Germaine Goodson as The Rhythm Queens. She is one of the subjects of Tap Dancing America by Constance Valis Hill and the documentary Gotta Move, Women in Tap by Lynn Daly. Under her direction, NJTAP Dance Ensemble has received 2020, 2019 and 2018 Jersey Arts Peoples Choice Award Favorite Modern/Cultural Dance Company, and the Company has been a recipient of the New Jersey State Council on the Arts Citation of Excellence.

Tony Waag founded the American Tap Dance Foundation a non-profit New York City based tap dance organization in 2001 with a mission of establishing and legitimizing Tap Dance as a vital component of American Dance through creation, presentation, education, and preservation. He also created Tap City, the annual New York City Tap Festival, International Tap Dance Hall of Fame, Tap Preservation and Hoofer Awards, the Gregory Hines Youth Scholarship Fund, Rhythm in Motion, Tap it Out, Tap Treasures, and the Gregory Hines Archives of American Tap Dance. As a performer and choreographer, he has been featured in hundreds of concerts, film and television productions. In January of 2010, he opened the American Tap Dance Center in New York City where he currently directs on-going education and training programs for tappers of all ages and levels.


SEGAL TALKS is a daily one-hour LIVE online conversation from Monday to Friday about making art and making sense in the Time of Corona.

SEGAL TALKS was conceived, created and curated by Frank Hentschker in March 2020.

SEGAL TALKS has been made possible by the support of Susan and Jack Rudin, the Hearst Foundation, and Marvin Carlson, Sidney E. Cohn Chair, The Graduate Center CUNY.


Originally founded in 1979 as the Center for Advanced Studies in Theatre Arts (CASTA), The Martin E. Segal Theatre Center was renamed in March of 1999 to recognize Martin E. Segal, one of New York City’s outstanding leaders of the arts. The Segal Center curates over thirty events throughout the Spring and Fall academic seasons, all free and open to the public. Dedicated to bridging the gap between the professional and academic theatre communities, the Segal Center presents readings, performance, lectures, and artists and academics in conversation. In addition, the Segal Center presents three annual festivals (PRELUDE, PEN World Voices: International Pay Festival, and The Segal Center Film Festival on Theatre and Performance) and publishes and maintains three open access online journals (Arab Stages, European Stages, and The Journal of American Drama and Theatre). The Segal Center also publishes many volumes of plays in translation and is the leading publisher of plays from the Arab world. The Martin E. Segal Theatre Center (MESTC) is a vital component of the Theatre Program’s academic culture and creating in close collaboration a research nexus, focusing on dramaturgy, new media, and global theatre. The Segal Center provides an intimate platform where both artists and theatre professionals can actively participate with audiences to advance awareness and appreciation.


Assistant Creative Producer: Sunyoung Kim
Next Generation Fellow: Andie Lerner
Junior Assistant Director of Programs: Kyueun Kim

THE GRADUATE CENTER, CITY UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK, of which the Martin E. Segal Theatre Center is an integral part, is the doctorate-granting institution of The City University of New York (CUNY). An internationally recognized center for advanced studies and a national model for public doctoral education, the school offers more than thirty doctoral programs, as well as a number of master’s programs. Many of its faculty members are among the world’s leading scholars in their respective fields, and its alumni hold major positions in industry and government, as well as in academia. The Graduate Center is also home to twenty-eight interdisciplinary research centers and institutes focused on areas of compelling social, civic, cultural, and scientific concerns. Located in a landmark Fifth Avenue building, The Graduate Center has become a vital part of New York City’s intellectual and cultural life with its extensive array of public lectures, exhibitions, concerts, and theatrical events.

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 tv@howlround.com, or call Vijay Mathew at +1 917.686.3185 Signal/WhatsApp. View the video archive of past events.

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