Link Roundups feature articles and bits of internet goodness that our dramaturgy team digs up. If you find something you want to send our way, drop us a line on Facebook or Twitter!
Photograph by Bobby Doherty
This NY Magazine story about Fieldston Lower School in New York City and their experiment to combat racial bias by separating students by race is getting a lot of attention:
The program, which was also put in place this school year at Ethical Culture, Fieldston’s other elementary school, would boost self-esteem and a sense of belonging among minority kids while combating the racism, subtle or otherwise, that can permeate historically white environments. It would foster interracial empathy by encouraging children to recognize differences without disrespect while teaching kids strategies, and the language, for navigating racial conflict.
Backstage.com, a major resource for casting directors, has changed it’s actor profile feature to be friendlier to trans actors after the casting process for Taylor Mac’s play Hir revealed some shortcomings in their their system:
As a matter of fact, the casting process of Hir has led to some big changes on Backstage.com. When we originally posted the casting notice, we were able to be specific in the text of the role description that actors auditioning for the role of Max be trans, but there was no way to categorize the role as transgender for the purpose of search; the role and profile search options on Backstage were limited to male and female options. Contacted by Playwrights Horizons, Backstage took the necessary steps to keep pace with the times.
Staff chat posts feature articles and news that the C1 team discusses as part of our weekly all-staff meeting. We’d love to hear your thoughts too — hit us up on Facebook or Twitter!
Believe it or not, the C1 team is already gearing up for our upcoming summer show, COLOSSAL by Andrew Hinderaker! To prep for our early conversations about the play, we’ve been looking for resources about accessibility. It’s important for all of us to feel comfortable with the language we’re using as we head into the audition, workshop, and production process for the play. This week, the staff is looking at a few articles and tips for interacting with people with physical disabilities:
One thing that’s key is making sure you’re using person-first language — language that puts the focus on the individual, rather than on a disability. Here’s a helpful chart!
As Zachary Fenell, the author of this article from Huffington Post writes:
No matter the word you use, aim to showcase the person. Ideally a person’s name will always come before his or her condition. So I’m Zachary Fenell, an author with cerebral palsy. Not, an author with cerebral palsy, Zachary Fenell. Introducing name first, condition second will maintain a person-first narrative.
Margaret Keller (l), executive director of Community Access to the Arts, applauds along with teachers and students after a poetry reading in Pittsfield, Mass. last July. CATA provides access to visual and performance arts to people with disabilities
Playwright Lauren Gunderson explains why she insists her play, I and You, should be cast with actors that are not the same race. Read her explanation here.
Alchemist Theatre ended its production of Oleanna by David Mamet after the company received a “cease-and-desist” letter from Dramatists Play Service because the company decided to cast a male in the role of Carol. Read the article here.
In this blog post from the FairyPrincessDiaries, she voices her thoughts on Philadelphia’s Lantern Theater’s production of Julius Caesar. The company decided to set the play in Rome after a Japanese-led invasion; however, they decided not to cast any actors of Asian descent. Read her thoughts here.
In this article from Tufts Daily, Tufts University’s drama department is igniting conversation due to the casting of their production of RENT. They explain how they went about choosing the cast for RENT and the problems the department faces regarding diversity in the program. Read the article here.