2019 AATE National Conference
August 1-5, 2019

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Keynote 

 

Kayhan Irani 
Saturday, August 3, 2019, 9:50-10:50 am

Kayhan Irani is an Emmy-award winning writer, a cultural activist, and a Theater of the Oppressed trainer. She creates art to build community and connect audiences into social justice issues. She regularly partners with NGOs, government agencies, and community-based organizations to use theater and story-based strategies for organizing, engagement, and education.

Kayhan was one of ten artists named by President Obama’s White House as a 2016 White House Champion of Change for her art and storytelling work. In 2010 she won a New York Emmy award for best writing for We Are New York a 9-episode broadcast TV drama (WNYCTV) used as an English language and civic engagement tool for immigrant New Yorkers. She created a linked, community-based conversation initiative that brought thousands of immigrants, throughout the five boroughs, together to practice English in volunteer-led conversation groups, that continues to this day.

In 2012-2013 Kayhan was a Fulbright-Nehru Senior Researcher in India working on her play, Tree of Seeds. Her one-woman show, We've Come Undone toured nationally and internationally, telling stories of Arab, South Asian and Muslim-American women in the wake of 9/11. She has trained hundreds of groups in Theater of the Oppressed and participatory storytelling tools over the years, both nationally and overseas, in Afghanistan, India, and Iraq.

Her published work includes a volume of essays, Telling Stories to Change the World: Global Voices on the Power of Narrative to Build Community and Make Social Justice Claims (Routledge, 2008) and a chapter in Culturally Relevant Arts Education for Social Justice: A Way Out of No Way. (Routledge, 2015).

Kayhan is currently working on a new one-woman show, There is a Portal, an experiment in performance pedagogy for immigrant and refugee youth engagement and community development.


Alexis Roblan and Ty Defoe
Sunday, August 4, 2019, 10:30-11:30 am

Alexis Roblan’s plays include RED EMMA & THE MAD MONK (The Tank, NY Times Critic’s Pick), DAUGHTERS OF LOT (Edinburgh Fringe), COLOR BLUE (Festival de Teatro Alternativo, Bogotá), AND IT SPINS TWICE (FringeNYC), LILIYA (Exquisite Corpse Company), YOU FEEL SO FAR AWAY RIGHT NOW (Finalist, O’Neill National Playwrights Conference), SAMUEL (Finalist, Clubbed Thumb Biennial Commission), and THE ANDREW PLAY (Thomas Barbour Playwrights Award). Originally from Coos Bay, Oregon, she is a graduate of the University of Southern California’s MFA in Dramatic Writing program, and her work has been developed in NYC by companies such as Clubbed Thumb, Ars Nova, Project Y, Exquisite Corpse Company, New Perspectives Theatre Company, The Dennis & Victoria Ross Foundation, and more.


2019 Partners & Sponsors

  

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