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Welcome to 2017

After a rocky finish to last year, we're hoping you've had time to rejuvenate with your families and communities, and are finding yourselves recommitted to your work. So far in 2017, artEquity facilitators and staff braved blizzard-like conditions in New Haven, CT at a training for MFA students at Yale University, joined the MFA program at Brown/Trinity Rep for our first intensive training (and attended Trinity Rep's production of Katori Hall's The Mountaintop on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day), and headed to Washington, D.C. at the end of January to focus on 2017 planning efforts.

This year promises to be one of great challenge, and artEquity is poised to continue its work. The U.S. is experiencing a swell of collective action, and we are excited about the potential for movement-building as a result of gatherings like the Women's March (which boasted an absolutely incredible array of artful protest signs), the impromptu demonstrations at airports across the country, and calls for us to stand in solidarity with every community that is facing marginalization.

As for this newsletter, we plan to begin including a monthly "Call to Action" from members of our network, highlighting an urgent, equity-based issue that is in need of national attention. It will be called out in this section on a monthly basis, and should include information about what the artEquity community can do to provide immediate support. Please feel free to respond to the newsletter with calls to action throughout the year. 

Finally, while we support the uplifting of black history every day, here's a list of recently released must-reads from The Guardian as you celebrate Black History Month.  

Be well,
the artEquity team
READ & ACT

LINKS
The Critical Role of Self-Care for Handling Post-Election Stress

A Call to Act(ion!) - Gregg Mozgala's APAP 2017 Plenary Speech

The Women's March's 10 Days, 100 Actions 

Celebrate Black History Month at these 20 NYC Events

EVENTS
February and March, 2017
CreAtive Self Care Workshops with TeAda
Los Angeles, CA

February 18, 2017 
Day of Remembrance 2017: Unite to Uphold Our Civil Rights

Los Angeles, CA

February 28, 2017
#NAACPMeet
Washington, D.C. 

March 3 and 4, 2017
Age & Gender Equity in the Arts / Symposium 2017
Unconscious Bias: Achieving Gender Equity
Portland, OR
What's Happening
BroadwayCon 2017: Trans Representation in Theatre
artEquity facilitator Ty Defoe (second from left, above) participated in this year's BroadwayCon in NYC, contributed to a dynamic panel on Trans Representation in theatre, from performers to creative teams to theatre staffs and beyond. Ty's co-discussants included Maybe Burke, Em Grosland, Azure D. Osborne-Lee, and Aneesh Sheth (the discussion was moderated by Maggie Keenan-Bolger).

For more on Broadway Con, click here.


artEquity Staff Retreat in Washington, D.C.

artEquity staff (including, from left below, Carmen Morgan, Lydia Garcia, Tevin Giddens, Hannah Fenlon, Michael Robertson, and Nijeul Xavier Porter) traveled to the Columbia Heights neighborhood in Washington, D.C. at the beginning of 2017 for three days of strategic planning, team-building, and community cooking (including this heavy pot of gumbo, pictured at left). 

In addition to reviewing and refining our organizational structure, we refocused on defining artEquity's values as a way to ensure that we are centering our humanity and a commitment to equity in our administrative and strategic work.   



 

Join the artEquity Team!
We're also pleased to announce an opening on the artEquity team! artEquity is searching for a Program Manager to contribute to its work, which includes organizational partnerships, consulting opportunities, and our annual facilitator training (among other activities). Please find the job description, along with all necessary details on how to apply here. Note that this person should be based in Los Angeles. If you're a social-justice minded administrator with a desire to work on a dynamic, busy team (with a great sense of humor), we hope you'll consider joining us! 
artEquity Alumni Spotlight
 
#BreakingtheBinary at A.R.T.
Lisa Evans (left, above, artEquity 2015) and SK Kerastas (right, artEquity 2015) hosted their second #BreakingTheBinary symposium at A.R.T.'s Oberon in Cambridge on January 30th. The event is a direct response to a need for education around TGNCNB2-S (trans, gender non-conforming, non-binary, Two Spirit) identity in the theater field on national and local levels. Lisa and SK use panel discussions and breakout conversations to provoke conversation among attendees, with the goals of: 
  • acknowledging the ways in which local arts ecosystems in cities across the country have vibrant queer and trans arts community that are largely separate from the regional theatre community 
  • the importance of highlighting the work of local artists (with a specific emphasis on TGNCNB2-S of color) and
  • The need for arts organizations to develop sustainable strategies for TGNCNB2-S inclusion
For more information on #BreakingtheBinary, email SK (SK.kerastas@gmail.com) and Lisa (levans@calshakes.org) and check out the livestream of last year's symposium here.

2016 Latinx Theatre Commons Convening
From December 1-4, 2016, Latinx Theatre artists, scholars, administrators, and advocates from the tri-state area and across the USA were invited to participate in this annual convening to engage in a dialogue on the growing Latinx Theatre movement in New York City. LTC is a national movement that uses a commons-based approach to transform the narrative of the American theater, to amplify the visibility of Latinx performance making, and to champion equity through advocacy, art making, convening, and scholarship. artEquity was represented by Program Director Carmen Morgan and Special Projects Manager and Facilitator Michael Robertson, in addition to a small reunion of artEquity alumni, including Chantal Rodriquez (artEquity '16), Daniel Jáquez (artEquity '16) and Alex Meda (artEquity '15). The convening was produced by Abigail Vega (artEquity '16). 

Read more about the Latinx Theatre Commons here.

Women's Leadership Forum at APAP
As a precursor to the annual Association of Performing Arts Presenters (APAP) Conference in New York City last month, Women of Color in the Arts (WOCA) co-presented an afternoon pre-conference entitled Women's Leadership Forum - Leveraging Leadership: Addressing Bias in the Arts. Courtney Harge (artEquity 2016) and Tiffany Wilhelm (artEquity 2015) participated in the event as moderators (Courtney moderated the central panel discussion, and Tiffany led the open discussion section). Tiffany tells us: "The highlight for me was hearing from some of our long-time leaders in the field -- Colleen Jennings-RoggensackKristy Edmunds, and Baraka Sele -- who each told stories from their varied careers. Nayantara Sen from Art/Work Practice led an excellent anti-bias workshop that got us to think critically about challenges we face and the strategies we use to address them. We committed to choosing actual equity/justice strategies rather than less impactful diversity, equality strategies that are not getting us all the way to justice. We wrapped up the day with some reflections around staying true to the intersections of race and gender and all other identity issues in our movement."

Read more about WOCA here.       
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