Presenting Unrehearsed Futures: Theatre for their Communities livestreaming on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Wednesday 30 June 2021 at 8 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 11 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4) / Thursday 1 July 2021 at 4 a.m. BST (London, UTC +1) / 5 a.m. SAST (Cape Town, UTC +2).
In this discussion with artistic directors Eric Ting in Orinda, California and Kirtana Kumar in Bengaluru, Karnataka, we will discuss the many levels of community in which theatre companies participate, how they serve them and how the virtual realm is opening new doors.
Speaker 1: Eric Ting
Organization / School: Artistic Director, California Shakespeare Theater
Obie Award-winning director Eric Ting’s work lives at the intersection of art and community practice. Artistic Director of California Shakespeare Theater since 2016, Ting has remained deeply committed to the development of new and diverse voices for the theater, directing works (many of them world premieres) by The 1491s, Toshi Reagon, Lloyd Suh, Jackie Sibblies Drury, Sam Hunter, Marcus Gardley, Aditi Kapil, Kimber Lee, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig, Kenneth Lin, Kristofer Diaz, Lauren Yee, Anna Deavere Smith, and others. Ting’s work has been seen across the United States, as well as internationally, including Singapore, France, UAE, Holland, Canada, Romania, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Bali. He is a multiple-grant recipient, including a TCG New Generations Future Leaders fellowship, a Jerome & Roslyn Milstein Meyer Career Development Prize, a NEFA National Theater Project grant, a MAP Fund Award, and he was named one of Yerba Buena Center for the Arts’ 2019 YBCA100. He has served on numerous grant and fellowship panels including the Mellon Foundation, the Doris Duke Charitable Trust, the Jerome and McKnight Foundations, the NEA, TCG, PONY and the Alpert Awards. Ting is a proud member of the SDC Board.
Speaker 2: Kirtana Kumar
Organization / School: Artistic Director, Little Jasmine Theatre Project | Infinite Souls Farm
Kirtana Kumar is an actor, director, dramaturg and film-maker with 30 years experience. She trained and performed for six years as an actor with The Asian-American Theatre Project at The Los Angeles Theatre Centre (LATC) and has a Master’s Degree in European Classics and American Literature. She has made 13 documentary films including the award winning Guhya. She has received the MacArthur Fellowship as well as a New Performance Grant from India Foundation for the Arts.
Her abiding interest is in creating new works with her company, Little Jasmine, with an emphasis on texts, visuals, sounds, ideas used as a lens for contemporary concerns. A few of these include My Children Who Should be Running Thru Vast Open Spaces…, Shakuntala, In the Hour of God, The Retreating World/Last Tuesday, Wedding Party and The Abhimanyu Project. Her solo self-devised works include One Night in Paris and Unruly Women. For ten years she has been on tour with Ranga Shankara and Schauburg’s Boy with a Suitcase, as dramaturg and assistant director. She teaches Theatre and Interculturality at the University in Dortmund. She developed and organised two national symposia on Dramaturgy and Theatre Pedagogy.
She works and travels extensively with theatre in the social sector. She has consulted with the Royal National Theatre (UK) Project Nadya, Common Ground Sign Dance Theatre (Liverpool), Path International’s Magnet Theatre etc.
She is a trustee of Women Artists Group and runs Little Jasmine, Theatre Lab and Infinite Souls Farm & Artists Retreat. She is the chairperson of the Board of Trustees at Visthar.
Curator: Amy Russell
Founder of Embodied Poetics
Amy Russell is Founder and Pedagogic Director of Embodied Poetics, which offers exploratory workshops and three-month summer intensives on the pedagogy of Jacques Lecoq, Jacques Copeau and Suzanne Bing in London, U.K., internationally and online. She is the Pedagogic Co-founder of the London International School of Performing Arts (L.I.S.P.A.) and founder and Chair of the Naropa University M.F.A. in Lecoq-based Actor Created Theatre. She has taught theatre creation internationally since 2003, at schools and conservatories, theatre companies and festivals. She is also an award-winning playwright and a qualified and accredited Gestalt psychotherapist and group facilitator. Her doctoral research at the University of Tasmania, Australia, is focused on theatre devising as a practice of social space.