Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Returning to the National Theater Institute

I am THRILLED that I am asked to return this summer to The National Theater Institute. I will return as the core playwriting faculty, working with the students of the TheaterMakers Summer Intensive Program. Housed on the campus of the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center in Waterford, CT, the NTI program is one of the most prestigious and exciting training programs in the country.

I taught at NTI last summer and loved every minute of it. The students were talented, brave, smart, dedicated, and showed a lot of guts by testing themselves in the 7-day a week (no kidding), 6 week program. For 42 days straight, the NTI students push it to the max, and I will be there doing my best to stoke their creative fires, to continue to learn from them, and to help all of us explode the thing wide open.

I also look forward to rejoining several talented teaching artists, including Yuriy Kordonsky (Wesleyan University) and Broadway performer (Passing Strange) Colman Domingo, among others. My work at NTI last summer undoubtedly made me a better teacher, more aware of ways to embody the teaching/learning process, and more dynamic and bold in my own use of space. Because of and motivated by the talent that will surround me, I see this teaching opportunity as a way to challenge own skills as an educator, and to push against my own teaching expectations.

As an added benefit, the summer training will be in session during the National Music Theater Conference, as well as the National Playwrights Conference, and there are lots of fun overlaps betweens these programs as well as a lot of high-quality work to witness.

It is a TRULY exciting place to be during the summer, and I can't wait to get started. We are still sorting through some of the details, but it is likely I will be in residence for the entire six-week program, beginning June 14th through July 27th.

Big thank yous to Jeff Janisheski for re-hiring me this year, and to Nick Roesler for being so radical and mystical. And thank yous again to all of the 2008 crew-- the students and staff-- for such a memorable summer last year.