Becoming Our Spaces


October 2021

Collaborating Artist for The Clinic Performance’s partnership with Actors Theatre of Louisville

Collective Care: Finding Freedom and Joy Through Movement invites members of the Kentucky Nurses Association to join a two day arts-based workshop, culminating in a short documentary by Superbloom and panel discussion on Thursday, November 4 at 7pm EST. 

The Clinic Performance combines art, music, movement, and caring science to create immersive experiences and resiliency workshops for healthcare professionals.

Panelist for Groundwork: Healing within Community Arts Education, a virtual gathering for community arts practitioners to embody radical reinvention and imagination as we process the pandemic.

Panelist for “Pathways to Creative Aging: Building Community Alliances through Artmaking” as part of the Creative Aging Track, Tuesday, October 26 at 2:30pm ET

Creative aging programs—when rooted in authentic collaboration—can be paths for older adults to feel fully seen and heard as vital contributors to our communities. In this Real Talk Session, representatives of creative aging programs at Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana and Ping Chong + Company talk openly about how they are using dance and storytelling to deepen connections among local elders. Join us to discuss how these kinds of transparent and human-centered approaches to creative aging can build alliances among your older adult students, your staff and teaching artists, and your community partners and spark broader advocacy.

Presenters: Leslie Roybal (Program Director, Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana), Elisabet Torras Aguilera (Teaching Artist, Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana), Carly McCollow (Teaching Artist, Ping Chong + Company), Courtney Surmanek (Teaching Artist, Ping Chong + Company), Cory Michael Herman (Director, Alliance Stage Company), Sarie Teichman (Older Adult Student, Ping Chong + Company)

September 2021

Co-Facilitator of The Intimacy & Care of One-On-One Performance with Steven T. Licardi at Play Perform Learn Grow’s Creating Belonging in Times of Pandemic

PPLG is a conference, an international gathering and a growing community. Founded in 2017 in response to the dehumanizing conditions created by the refugee policy crisis in Europe, PPLG has already taken place three times. It brings together people from around the world who use play and performance to engage social issues, heal trauma, stimulate imagination and possibility, generate community, and build bridges.

About The Intimacy & Care of One-On-One Performance: In this multi-day workshop, participants will envision/execute a 10-15 minute, site-responsive performance to be shared with select festival attendees. Each performance will be an emotional journey of healing and discovery, holding space for a range of emotions. Performances will be participatory, and one-on-one in a private Zoom room. Performances may be therapeutic, but are not offered as therapy. The goal of this multi-day workshop is to provide a structured environment to design a performance to be taken beyond the festival. Further, PPLG attendees will experience one-on-one, site-responsive performances that “craft new possibilities of belonging”.

We agreed with  PPLG 2021 participants that session recordings will not be shared publicly. Above is a gif from day two of the workshop. We danced in the main breakout room as artists and their guests exited their one-on-one performances. Below is our recipe for a more connected world. We weaved our recipes together using the chat:

1 full warm bathtub after a long day (with 3 vanilla candles), 4 spoons of the smell of Jasmin at the beginning of spring, 1 cup of poetries of my grandmother, 3 spoons of the TATATATA of my son looking at me smiling. A pinch of Grazie/Thank you (it always tastes better with some of it).
Mix the ingredients at taste, follow what order and cooking time you feel is needed, but I suggest to that slowly, taking the time to be careful, with the ingredients, and how you mix them. And think about the person(s) you are cooking for. It will taste better to them this way.

I fold my bicycle

for a more connected world we need an ocean free from restrictions, a world of boats, children as teachers, holding hands to cross the mountains of fear and a couple of time to sit in togetherness.
Instructions: follow the recipe ingredients from the bottom up. Sit together with the stranger, hold hands to cross the fear, let the children teach you, get in the boats and cross the ocean freely.

I blend my mask

1 cup of the ocean breeze of Shinnecock land—the homeland my ancestors borrowed without asking. 2 tablespoons of gratitude, care, and permission. A pinch of promises kept.
Smell the ocean—know the smell is caught beneath your fingernails. Thank it. Contribute breath, practice permission. Your promise is a first step.

frullare le breakout rooms a pezzi fini
(blend breakout rooms in small pieces)

One pound of acceptance, 50 cc’s of warm fuzzies, a mountain of sparkles, basted with warm flames of love

more consciously deep fat frying time

1 Cup of stars, minced finely. 2 tablespoons of the insurmountable space between two lovers' disparate experiences of the same love. A pinch of grief. Reduce the lovers' experiences to a few bland moments. Scatter evenly with stars. Top everything with grief. Serve at room temperature.

Unlimited hugs, a sprinkling of knowing glances, some light house noises and a few spicy irritations.

July 2021

Co-Presenter at the National Association of State Arts Association’s Creative Aging Institute

Individual teaching artists and community arts organizations are the life force of successful creative aging programs across the country! NASAA's upcoming Creative Aging Institute features a panel discussion with arts administrators and teaching artists from Ping Chong + Company, who will share lessons learned from their recent Artful Storytelling: Our Meaningful Histories theatre project with older adults in New York City's Lower East Side neighborhood. Learn about program planning, delivery, partnership, virtual adjustments, outcomes and impact from the point of view of on-the-ground service providers. 

Please register for all Creative Aging Institute sessions. You will receive a link to join each session via the e-mail address you provide in the registration form. NASAA's inaugural Creative Aging Institute takes place online via Zoom video conference between 3:00 and 6:00 p.m. Eastern on Tuesday and Wednesday, July 20 and 21, and Tuesday and Wednesday, July 27 and 28, 2021. All state and jurisdictional arts agency and regional arts organization staff and council members are invited to participate, as are state and national partner organizations with an interest in creative aging. NASAA is waiving registration fees for this event, to make information on current trends and best practices in creative aging widely accessible to all.

For more information, contact NASAA Arts Learning Projects Director Susan Oetgen.


Recent writing published in September 2020 through the artist-run collective the neighbors can be found here.