THE TAG AWARDS
(Formerly the ATA Awards)
The TAG Awards seek to raise the visibility of teaching artists within the arts in education and community arts fields and in the organizations and institutions for which they work as well as honor innovation in teaching artistry. Nominations are made by peers in the teaching artistry field and winners are selected by panel review. Nominations for the 2023 Awards are closed. Please stay tuned for announcement of the winners. Celebrate TAG’s 25th Anniversary with us on May 18th by joining the online celebration at the link below.
ANNOUNCING THE 2023 AWARD WINNERS
Teaching Artists Guild, the oldest independent organization serving teaching artists in the US, is pleased to announce the winners of the 2023 Annual TAG Awards. The Distinguished Service to the Field Award will be given to Ariadne (Ari) Albright, the Innovation in Teaching Artistry Award will be given to Claudia Peregrina, and the Teaching Artist Ally Award will be given to The Bartol Foundation.
The Awards Ceremony will stream live on Thursday, May 18, 2023 7:00PM – 8:00PM EST, with regional “watch parties” occurring across the country. Read the full press release to find out more about our winners and the planned activities for the awards.
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Formerly known as and established in 2002, the Association of Teaching Artists (ATA) Awards were the first in the nation to recognize Teaching Artists. In 2019, the ATA Awards expanded to include two more awards, the Innovation in Teaching Artistry Award, and the Teaching Artist Ally Award (formerly the Golden Administrator Award), and opened a national nomination process–prior to that Teaching Artists in New York state were honored. In 2020, due to the COVID-19 global pandemic, the awards were held virtually in collaboration with Lincoln Center Activate through a pre-recorded video.
In 2022, the awards were rebranded as the TAG Awards after the Association of Teaching Artists (ATA) and Teaching Artists Guild (TAG) merged. They were held in conjunction with the “Our Shared Future” conference in collaboration with the National Endowment for the Arts, Arts Education Partnership, the Department of Education, and the Hewlett Foundation on April 7th, 2022.
Innovation in Teaching Artistry Award – an early to mid-career teaching artist making innovative and powerful contributions to the field of teaching artistry.
Teaching Artist Ally Award – a professional, who is not a teaching artist themselves but who has demonstrated a commitment to supporting teaching artists. This could be a partner classroom teacher, principal, Arts Council member, organization, arts administrator, or other.
Distinguished Service to the Field Award – a long-tenured artist educator showcasing a demonstrated history of impact in the field.
The 2023 TAG Awards are partially sponsored by Blick Art Materials.
Ariadne (Ari) Albright (Distinguished Service to the Field) is a visual artist and traveler who has spent three decades generating narrative paintings that explore themes of home and belonging. Born in Cheyenne, Wyoming, Ariadne (air-ee-odd-knee) received her B.F.A. in Printmaking from the University of Washington and M.F.A Painting from the University of South Dakota.
“My primary purpose as an art educator is to facilitate connections between individuals and our visual culture. Because each person has varying abilities, interest levels, and learning styles, our art exercises must be both engaging and relevant.”
Ariadne’s first book, Creative Care: An Artist in Healthcare, and its companion workbook, Creative Care: Projects, are based on her experiences of bringing studio practices into healthcare and community settings, they are written for creative people looking for unique ways to serve their community. See Creativecarellc.com for more information.
Claudia Peregrina (Innovation in Teaching Artistry) is a multidisciplinary artist and art therapist native from Mexico City. She has degrees in contemporary art and psychology from La Universidad de las Bellas Artes and La Universidad Autónoma de México.
As a teaching artist she has led art projects focused on promoting the preservation of Mexican culture as well as the expression of art for social change, developing her work in collaboration with diverse Art Institutions in the City of Philadelphia Pennsylvania.
For her work, Claudia has won several prestigious awards including The Leeway Foundation Art & Change Grant and the Leeway Transformation Award and was named one of 10 Latinos with significant achievements by the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Currently Claudia is the program Director at El Futuro from Mighty Writers, a nonprofit focused on supporting families and children in their social, academic, cultural, and creative development through the habit of reading, writing and art practices.
The Stockton Rush Bartol Foundation (Teaching Artist Ally) focuses on arts, education, healing, and social justice through grants and programs. We offer free, peer-led professional development workshops for teaching artists that cover teaching practices, entrepreneurial strategies, and networking. Since 2019, we have provided micro-grants to support community projects and professional development for teaching artists. The foundation provides in-depth training in trauma-informed practices for teaching artists and arts education administrators, combining theory, practice, and self-care while building a community of trauma-informed practitioners. In 2024, we plan to launch an online version of this training to help arts educators in Philadelphia and beyond. The foundation is led by a board of artists, educators, and activists with the goal of supporting equitable access to creative art-making experiences for historically under-resourced communities due to systems of oppression. We recognize and support the wealth of arts and arts educators within these communities.
Francisco Javier Hernandez Carbaljal (aka) Brujo de la Mancha (Innovation in Teaching Artistry) I am a multidisciplinary, self-taught artist, born in Mexico City from a mixed Mexican-indigenous and Spanish working-class family. My paternal grandmother migrated from Xico, Veracruz to Mexico City before I was born, and I continued this family experience with my migration to Philadelphia in 1998. I have over twenty years of experience in community-building through artmaking and arts education. Most of my work has been in underprivileged communities through after-school programs, senior centers, and work with high-risk middle and high school students.
In 2003 I co-founded Ollin Yoliztli Calmecac (OYC), an educational organization whose mission is to raise awareness about the history and culture of the indigenous peoples of this continent, and in particular the Mexicayotl tradition and teachings, which flourished in pre-Columbian Central America. In the Nahuatl language, OYC means “school of blood moving in the heart”. Through our work, we make invaluable cultural contributions to the United States.
Joanne Web, Director, The Career Center, Western Region, The Actors Fund (Teaching Artist Ally) Joanne Webb displays her talents and experience as the Director of The Career Center at The Actors Fund, Western Region. She prides herself in her proven ability to motivate and collaborate with creative people and organizations, enabling them to succeed in their strategic goals, enhanced through community alliance. Since, 2015, through individual grants from Sony Pictures Entertainment, Joanne has been designing and producing The Creative Classroom Symposium for the Arts Education community, including present and potential teaching artists. This event is followed by The Actors Fund Teaching Artist Program, bringing together a cohort to learn the elements involved in becoming a teaching artist, including the California Arts Standards. Previous to working for The Actors Fund, Joanne has a broad background in the entertainment arena, having been an actor, working behind the scenes in television production/promotion with CBS, Paramount, and ABC Television, as well as Editorial Supervisor and Artist/Creative Development Manager for The Walt Disney Company, Consumer Products Division both in New York and Los Angeles. Throughout her work in career development, she has focused her expertise on encouraging artists to explore and successfully enhance individual career paths by utilizing their creative talents and skills. Joanne has a BFA in Theater Acting from Boston University and an MA in Psychology, Specialization in Applied Community Psychology from Antioch University.
Patricia Joson Cruz (Distinguished Service to the Field) is Atelierista for the International School of Panama and founder of the Transcontinental Educator Artist Collective for Humanity (TEACH). For over 25 years, Pat has worked to help struggling students find their voice and superpowers through arts integrated learning. As an art teacher, Pat piloted a “Reading through the Arts” program at two high poverty schools in Baltimore, Maryland. This program helped to significantly raise student achievement. In 2007 Pat joined the founding chapter of USA’s oldest Artists in Education organization, Young Audiences/Arts for Learning. While there she directed the Teaching Artist Institute which partnered teaching artists with teachers across Maryland. This program led to several in-depth multi year school district partnerships. In response to the pandemic, Pat created TEACH – a worldwide marketplace of and for Teaching Artists. In July 2021, TEACH hosted its first Climate Change Agents Conference: connecting artists with scientists for grassroots eco-action.
Nai-Ni Chen (Distinguished Service to the Field Awards) A recipient of multiple choreographic fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and New Jersey State Council on the Arts, Nai-Ni Chen has been making dances professionally for over thirty years in the US. A unique cultural and artistic resource, the Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company has toured to major venues in the US and international dance festivals in 12 countries. She is a resident artist at New Jersey City University and helped to launch the latest NJCU-Joffrey Dance BFA. Her teaching was propelled by her 1998 commission “Peach Flower Landscape” by the Lincoln Center Institute for Arts Education and “The Art of Chinese Dance” by ChinaSprout.com. As a teaching artist, she has taught in over 100 schools and is currently working on New Jersey’s Dance to Learn curriculum to re-envision a culturally-diverse, equitable and creative curriculum that brings the boundless world of the cross-cultural journey to students in diverse and inclusive settings.
Kwame Scruggs (Innovation in Teaching Artistry) has over 20 years of experience using myth in the development of urban male youth and adults. He holds a Ph.D. and MA in Mythological Studies with an emphasis in Depth Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute in Santa Barbara, California. Kwame is the founder and director of Alchemy, a non-profit organization in Akron, Ohio established in 2003. Alchemy uses mythological stories to engage urban adolescent youth. In 2012, Alchemy was one of 12 programs to receive the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities—the nation’s highest honor for after-school and out-of-school programs. Alchemy was also the backdrop for feature-length documentary, “Finding the Gold Within.” Kwame is also a board member of the Joseph Campbell Foundation and a graduate of the National Guild Community Art Education’s CAELI (Community Arts Education Leadership Institute) Class of 2015.
Dennie Palmer Wolf (Teaching Artist Ally) is a Principal Researcher at WolfBrown, an international arts and culture consulting firm. Wolf focuses on the design, implementation, evaluation and research that help communities examine and improve how young people and their families’ gain access to learning, culture and creativity, in and outside of formal institutions. Over the last two decades, Wolf has helped a number of city-wide and regional consortia to build systemic efforts designed to support critical and creative learning in and out of school time for all students on the grounds that imagination is a fundamental human capacity that should be denied to no one. She writes, advocates, and talks widely on issues of assessment, evaluation, artistic, and imaginative development. She writes, advocates, and talks widely on issues of assessment, evaluation, artistic, and imaginative development. In that spirit, Wolf partners 24 x 7 with organizations working at the intersection of the arts, social justice, and human development. May we get there!
Award of Recognition:
Tim Lord and Jason Duchin of DreamYard in the Bronx NY
Nicole Bond at the SMART Museum in Chicago, IL
Margie Reese of Wichita Falls Alliance for Arts and Culture in Wichita, TX
Mandi Jackson of Music Haven in New Haven, CT.
Distinguished Service to the Field Award – Dale Davis is a founder of New York State Poets In The Schools and The New York State Literary Center where she serves as Executive Director. She has edited and published over 600 books for NYSLC and written 12 hip-hop theater pieces that have been performed in juvenile justice facilities. Davis has lectured throughout the country including the College Board’s National Forum Education and The American Future and served as a consultant on Youth Culture to ABC Network. Her writing has appeared in publications from The Iowa Review to The New York Times and chapters in Unseen Cinema and Classics in the Classroom, and been honored by The President’s Committee on Arts and Humanities and The Center for Disease Control National AIDS Clearinghouse. She was a founder of the Association of Teaching Artists and ATA’s first Executive Director where she initiated the Distinguished Service to the Field Award, National Teaching Artist Appreciation Week, and the Teaching Artists Forum the first national gathering of TAs. In 2019 she created The Artist as Educator to gather meeting points between an artist’s work and practice as an educator and collect and reflect upon the contributions of artists to education, communities, and culture.
Innovation in Teaching Artistry – Ali Santana is a multi-disciplinary artist working with collage, video, photography, sound, and performance. Santana, a native Brooklynite is influenced by community, natural patterns, unquantized rhythms and, ancient cultures. His work often explores topics related to Black American identity, urban colonization, observations of nature, and sensory perception. Ali’s live audio-visual shows combine video art and experimental cinema with booming beats, sound design and field recordings which are chopped, looped, and arranged in real time to perform an abstract method of storytelling that he dubs Boom Bap Cinema. Ali is also an experienced educator. In his current post as a teaching artist at The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) Teens program, he shares his artistic practice in music production, performance, and video art with NYC high school students, teaching them video production & editing, collage, and beatmaking. He prioritizes accessibility, creative problem-solving and resourcefulness, emphasizing that anyone can use art as a tool for change. More at: www.alisantana.com
Ed Friedman, Executive Director/Co-founder Lifetime Arts: Ed has spent over 40 years in parallel careers serving the arts community, and older adults and their families. At Lifetime Arts, Ed is instrumental in the coordination and implementation of multiple national initiatives and writes a monthly column, “Ed Talks,” on topics related to Creative Aging. Ed also oversees the organization’s finances, staffing, and speaks about Lifetime Arts’ work at conferences and symposia across the country. Ed played a key leadership role at The Bronx Council on the Arts as Deputy Director for two decades. He has directed programs at senior centers and home care organizations, and created and led a caregivers’ support group in the Bronx. Ed received a B.A. in Psychology from Hunter College and M.A. in Liberal Studies from Empire State College (SUNY). His plays and monologues appear in a number of anthologies and have been produced throughout the NY metropolitan area and around the country.
Maura O’Malley, CEO/Co-founder Lifetime Arts: Named a 2017 “Influencer in Aging” by PBS Next Avenue, Maura promotes the field of Creative Aging at major national conferences in the arts, public library and senior service sectors. With almost 40 years’ experience in arts management; including program design and implementation, arts education, development and community cultural work, she has informed policy and created innovative programming for adults and children with premiere arts and educational organizations including the NYC Department of Education, Studio in a School and Young Audiences/New York. Maura leads the development of Lifetime Arts’ national programming models, training programs and resources for Creative Aging stakeholders including teaching artists. Maura graduated from Pratt Institute with a BFA in Painting and earned a Master of Public Administration in Arts Policy and Planning from NYU’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. She is a proud member of the National Advisory Board of the Teaching Artists Guild.
Lifetime Arts: Founded in 2008 as an arts service organization, Lifetime Arts’ programs and services support a vision that embraces “positive aging” with arts education at the core. Our mission is to encourage Creative Aging by promoting the inclusion of arts education in organizations that serve older adults; to prepare teaching artists to develop the creative capacity of older adult learners; and to foster lifelong learning in and through the arts by increasing opportunities for participation in community-based programming. Working nationally, we provide training, technical assistance and resources to build the capacity of teaching artists, arts and community organizations, senior service providers, public libraries, funders and government agencies to support Creative Aging programming. Creative Aging programs benefit older adults by decreasing social isolation through new learning networks and catalyze new community partnerships in both the arts and aging sectors – expanding the reach and impact of teaching artists and arts organizations.
David Marquis (posthumous award)
David Marquis founded Marquis Studios in 1977 and served as the Executive Director until 2017. He brought to his work as an educator his considerable experience as a theater artist of many capacities. David began his artistic career in London, where he studied and taught acting for five years. From 1985-1989, he sat on the Board of Directors for the Puppetry Guild of New York. From 1988-1990, he was a site reporter for the National Endowment for the Arts theater program. From 1992-2000, he was a member of the Board of Directors of the New York City Arts in Education Round table. He was a founding member of the Association of Teaching Artists and sat on the Board of Trustees of Brooklyn’s Pratt Institute from 2005-2014 as well as the Board of Directors of the Delaware College of Art and Design 2010-2014. As a puppeteer, he toured the United States and had been placed prominently in many international festivals. As a Teaching Artist for 38 years, David taught numerous classroom and professional development workshops. Subjects include puppetry, architecture, theater arts, writing, video editing, literacy, and mask-making. In the late 1970s, his work with video and computer‐generated images of his own design was the first integration of this technology into Puppet Theater in the United States.
The Association of Teaching Artists presented its 2015 Distinguished Service to The Field Award to Jane Remer on May 28, 2015 in a collaborative event with the NYC Arts in Education Roundtable hosted at NYU.
After receiving her doctorate in education from New York University in 1955, Maxine Greene spent most of her career on the faculty at Teachers College, Columbia University. In her distinguished career Maxine Greene authored seven books, dozens of articles, and she has received numerous academic awards and honorary degrees. She is past president of the American Educational Research Association, Philosophy of Education Society, and the American Educational Studies Association.
She has been Philosopher-in-Residence of Lincoln Center Institute for the Arts in Education since 1976, and she conducts workshops and lectures at LCI’s summer sessions.
Maxine Greene continues to inspire people interested in awakening the minds and spirits of their students, as well as those who are interested in teaching and acting in the realm of social justice. When she founded the Maxine Greene Foundation for Social Imagination, the Arts, and Education in 2003 Greene shared her vision:
“To generate inquiry, imagination, and the creation of art works by diverse people. It has to do so with a sense of the deficiencies in our world and a desire to repair, wherever possible. Justice, equality, freedom–these are as important to us as the arts, and we believe they can infuse each other, perhaps making some difference at a troubled time.” (The Maxine Greene Foundation for Social Imagination, the Arts & Education, 2007)
The man bent over his guitar,
A shearsman of sorts. The day was green.
They said, “You have a blue guitar.
You do not play things a they are.”
The man replied, “Things as they are
Are changed upon the blue guitar.”
Wallace Stevens, “The Man with the Blue Guitar”
David Shookhoff (Golden Administrator Award)
As Education Director of Manhattan Theatre Club since 1988, David Shookhoff has designed and implemented a range of programs that annually serve 5,000 students, teachers, and families in the New York City area and around the nation. A leader in the field of arts education, Mr. Shookhoff helped found and currently chairs the New York City Arts in Education Roundtable and serves on the NYC Department of Education Advisory Council on Arts Education and on the Boards of Directors of the Center for Arts Education and Opus 118—Harlem School for Music. He has chaired the Arts in Education Panel of the New York State Council on the Arts and has been a panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts. He serves on the Education Committee of the Broadway League and on a special task force on learning assessment for the Theatre Communications Group. He has been a consultant to the Lincoln Center Institute, the Theatre Development Fund, and many other arts organization in New York and around the country. He has directed numerous theatre and opera productions for companies in New York City and nationwide, and has taught at NYU, City College, Carnegie Mellon University, Sarah Lawrence College, Columbia University Teachers College, the University of Pennsylvania, and the Mannes School of Music. Mr. Shookhoff holds a BA cum laude from Stanford University and an MFA in Directing from the Yale School of Drama.
Tribute to David Shookhoff
By Russell Granet
Oh ye of Common Ground draw near
Please cast a spell and lend an ear
For quite an honor is bestowed
To a great man who is much owed
He’s mentor, mensch, and educator
And quite the best administrator
He’s gone the distance, a marathoner
That’s why he’s earned our highest honor
With Olympic feats the man doth grapple
Hence not bronze nor silver, but Golden Apple
Like Camelot in that great fable
He’s King Arthur of the Arts Roundtable
His kingdom’s huge but has a hub
It’s called Manhattan Theater Club
From two top schools the man doth hail
He went to Stanford and to Yale
But New York City is where he lives
He never takes and always gives
His reach is what we here applaud
Because the man’s a demi-god
So let us all now raise a glass
To the great man who’s full of class
Both now and before
Each career took off
We emulate David Shookhoff
Holly Adams (Distinguished Service to the Field Award)
A professional performer, playwright, mask maker, and Teaching Artist for twenty-five years, Holly Adams is, also, a performing arts teacher and an artist in residence at universities. She links academic and arts curricula and creates arts-based academic curriculum. She taught in Connecticut’s “Fame School”, the Greater Hartford Academy of Performing Arts, before moving to Tompkins County.
She has been a professional performer for over twenty-five years, with a focus on physical theatre styles. She particularly enjoys creating and performing original work: “VOICES/lives” with co-creator and performer Pete Rush, toured to excellent reviews in 2007, and “The Oral Tradition”, written with collaborator David A. Miller from Roundabout Theatre, was at the West End Theatre in February of 2008. Other recent highlights: “Further Adventures of Clown” at the Hangar Theatre, “Gossip” at the / kitchen Theatre, Alanna in the audio book productions of the Tamora Pierce novels, Richard III in “Kynge’s Games”, and all of the animal roles in “My Father’s Dragon”.
Holly Adams has since been a Teaching Artist for 13 years in NYSCA’s Empire State Partnership programs.
She is a graduate of the Dell ‘Arte School of Physical Theatre, and holds a Masters degree in Theatre, Education, and Social Change.
Some of her favorite Teaching Artist projects include Chaos Theory with third graders, Travelogues with ninth graders, a comic version of “Titus Andronicus” with juniors and seniors, and anything with the Hangar Theatre.
Bill Vanaver & Livia Drapkin Vanaver
Bill Vanaver composer / folklorist / performer / Artistic Director of The Vanaver Caravan, musician and composer has been performing and teaching throughout the world for the past 46 years. He has recorded on the Vanguard, Elektra, Nonesuch, Folkways, Philo, and MMC labels. He has produced music for films, dance and theater productions, including The Clearwater, with Pete Seeger, Babyswim, (Bullfrog Prod’s) Gorky’s Barbarians for the Royal Shakespeare Company at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, A Thousand Nights and a Night for Andre Gregory’s Manhattan Project, and two presentations for National Geographic Films. He has also composed and/or choreographed for several productions by the theatre department of SUNY New Paltz, including Blood Wedding, Trojan Women, Hecuba, and Zorba the Greek .
The Vanaver Caravan is now touring This Land Is Your Land: Woody Guthrie in Dance and Music, which is based on the music and life of Woody Guthrie and Earthbeat: World Dance and Music. Bill is currently an adjunct professor of American and World Dance & Music at Bard College in Annandale-on Hudson, NY and Skidmore College.
Among his honors are the Tof Miriam Award, from the Federation of Reconstructionist Congregations and Havurot, to Bill and his wife, Livia, for their contributions to the Jewish cultural life in New York State. In 2007, Bill and Livia received the Eisteddfod Award from the Folk Music Society of NY for the years of practice and dissemination of traditional folksong, music and dance.
Livia Drapkin Vanaver, Founder / Co-Artistic Director of The Vanaver Caravan, has been traveling throughout the US and abroad for the past thirty-seven years with her husband Bill Vanaver, and their Vanaver Caravan. Ch,c
Ms. Vanaver holds a BFA in Dance from NYU School of the Arts (Tisch). For the past 28 years she has been on the cutting edge of arts-in-education programs throughout New York State pioneering the exposure of world dance styles to schools. Eighteen years ago, with the help of a seed grant from New York Foundation for the Arts, Livia Vanaver created a World Dance and Music Festival with the 3rd graders of all 4 schools in the Beacon City School District. This became a template for much of the residency work she and The Vanaver Caravan do in schools throughout New York State. The Vanaver Caravan conducts over 25 residencies each year that are curriculum inspired. Livia Vanaver is on the faculty of the Academy for the Love of Learning working closely with Aaron Stern in their Teacher Renewal Project: Arts, Renewal & Transformation. She teaches dance at Columbia University in the Graduate Theater Program.
She is currently the co-coordinator of the Hudson Valley/Capital District Regional Learning and Leadership Network working with the Empire State Partnerships in this region.
Poet and Visual Artist Bertha Rogers has published more than 250 poems in journals and anthologies, and in the interdisciplinary collection Even the Hemlock: Poems, Illuminations, Reliquaries; chapbooks The Fourth Beast; A House of Corners, and The Reason of Trees; and full-length poetry collection Sleeper, You Wake. Her translation of Beowulf was published in 2000, and she is currently translating the riddle-poems from the Anglo-Saxon Exeter Book. Her poem “Rhomboid” won PhiloPhonema’s Lyric Recovery Award in 2001, selected by Alfred Corn; and her poem “Truck Stand” was selected by John Ashbery for display in the Albany International Airport to celebrate the Millay Colony’s 3Oth anniversary. She has won residency fellowships to the MacDowell Colony, the Millay Colony, Caldera, Jentel, Hawthorne International Writers Retreat, and Hedgebrook. She is Delaware County’s first Poet Laureate.
Bertha Rogers’s paintings, illuminations, and artist’s books have been shown in more than 200 juried and solo shows throughout the US and abroad, and she has received several NYSCA Decentralization and NYFA SOS grants for her interdisciplinary work, including a 2006 award for her forthcoming solo exhibit, “The Stones and Bones of Delaware County.” In 2006 she was the recipient of an A.E. Ventures Grant http://www.brighthillpress.org. She founded Bright Hill Press in Treadwell, NY, now celebrating its 15th year, and serves as BHP program director, in partnership with NYSCA, for the New York State Literary Web Site and Literary Map, nyslittree.org.
Bertha Rogers has been a teaching artist, on and off, since the 1970s. She teaches through the DCMO/ONC BOCES AIE programs, with arts organizations in upstate New York, and she is a CROP artist as well as a Teachers and Writers Collaborative artist. She has been a poet-in-residence at Hartwick College, SUNY Potsdam, NCCC, and Wells College, and has taught creative writing at Hartwick. Through Bright Hill she is leading a series of Museum Research, Writing, and Visual Arts programs in 2007.
Dancer/choreographer, Susan Thomasson has performed a wide variety of modern dance styles, dancing and touring with the companies of Kathryn Posin, Raymond Johnson, Bill T. Jones, Bill Evans, and Rosalind Newman. Since 1983 she has been a soloist with Anna Sokolow’s Players’ Project, performing nationally and internationally with the company, and assisting in reconstruction of Ms. Sokolow’s repertory. She also tours a solo/duet concert of Pilobolus Dance Theatre’s work, originally created for Lincoln Center Institute.
A Teaching Artist for the Lincoln Center Institute since 1980, she has been involved in the development of many of the Institute’s national affiliates both as a performer and as a Teaching Artist. She has been a faculty member of Brooklyn College, the Rutgers University system, Manhattanville College, Fairleigh Dickinson University, the University of Northern Iowa, and Brooklyn’s Berkeley Carroll School. She is also an Artist-In-Residence for the New York Foundation for the Arts, the 92nd Street Y, New York City Center, the Joyce Theater, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, New Visions for New York City Public Education, and Hofstra University.
Susan Thomasson’s work has been presented at New York’s Riverside Dance Festival, the Aspen Music Festival, Hopkins Theatre at Dartmouth College, Iowa’s Cedar Arts Forum, and Bergen Dancemakers’ Dance Connection. Recent projects include a commission from the University of Nebraska’s Lied Center for an evening-length dance/theatre/music work, and a series of pieces for Lincoln Center incorporating poetry, text and movement.
Sherry Robbins is a poet, Teaching Artist, and free-lance writer. She has conducted creative writing workshops throughout New York State and abroad since 1977. Sherry Robbins is the Western New York coordinator for Alternative Literary Programs in the Schools (ALPS), the resident writer at Gay and Lesbian Youth Services of Western New York, and the project coordinator and Teaching Artist for several long-term Empire State Partnership residencies. She is currently an Arts in Education consultant for the University of Coimbra in Portugal and for Portugal’s Belgais Center for the Study of Arts.
Sherry Robbins has published two books of poetry, Snapshots of Paradise and Or, the Whale, as well as dozens of poems published in literary journals and anthologies here and in Spain and Portugal. She was the 1982 recipient of a New York State Creative Artist Public Service Award. She has just finished a book, The Accidental Poet, written with fellow Teaching Artist Susan Hannen, of one hundred creative writing exercises. The bi-lingual edition of The Accidental Poet is being published in Portugal this year. Before 2005 year is over, she will have her M.A. in the poetics of ecstasy, and her yoga teaching certification.
Margot Faught has worked extensively as a dance educator, arts project consultant/coordinator, and choreographer in many areas of the country for over twenty-five years. Her consulting work and teaching affiliations include The Kennedy Center, The Center for Arts Education (New York), New York City Arts in Education Roundtable, City Center (New York), New York City Opera, New York City Department of Education, VSA Arts (National, Indiana, Wisconsin), Young Audiences (San Jose, Indiana), Destine¢ Dance Foundation (New York), Indiana University, Purdue University, Michigan State University, Eastern New Mexico University, Central Connecticut State University, Joetsu University (Japan), Indiana Department of Education, Indiana Arts Commission, Connecticut Commission on the Arts, San Jose Museum of Art, Indianapolis Museum of Art, National Dance Association, National Dance Education Organization, and daCi (dance and the Child international). Choreography credits include Kaleidoscope Dance Company of Seattle, Phoenix Theatre of Indianapolis and the Weathervane Theatre in Whitefield, New Hampshire. Currently residing in New York City, Margot is a workshop facilitator and teaching artist for ArtsConnection and a consultant, workshop facilitator and Associate with Together in Dance: Zalesky and Associates. She received her B.S. and M.S. from Indiana University.
Barbara Fisher and Richard Speigel
Richard Spiegel and Barbara Fisher, native New Yorkers, met in 1977 while organizing the annual alternative press New York Book Fair for which he was poetry coordinator and she fiscal director. They’ve published Waterways: Poetry in the Mainstream 11 times a year since 1978 giving voice to adult poets from Indonesia to Coney Island. They’ve published more than 2,000 separate student literary magazines, and close to 10,000 youths since beginning their partnership with NYC schools in 1979 first by letterpress, then xerography, and more recently on the web. Their program, The Waterways Project, began as a collaboration of 30 small poetry presses determined to bring poetry to the people coming to readings on piers, riverbanks and waterfront areas of NY State.
Ten Penny Players, their children’s theatre was begun in 1967 providing live and puppet programs to youths of all ages. With a particular mission to persons with disabilities they have worked in hospitals, rehabilitative settings, self contained special education classrooms, and prisons. Spiegel has published 6 chapbooks of poetry, 2 of which include his paintings; Fisher has written and illustrated more than 25 books for children/young adults. They’ve both been published extensively by the alternative press and were married on the Brooklyn Bridge.
The award was presented at the ATA Reception, hosted by the Rochester Region Association of Teaching Artists, at Common Ground 2002.
Richard Lewis is the Director of The Touchstone Center for Children www.touchstonecenter.net, which he founded in 1969 in New York City. The Touchstone Center is an arts organization which works in the public schools of New York – emphasizing the role of the imagination through various long term explorations based on themes and images of the natural world. Richard Lewis and his staff of Teaching Artists have recently completed, as part of the Center’s thematic project, Speakings: The Many Voices of Language, a series of school gardens and murals highlighting the art and writing of students. In addition to its work in schools, The Touchstone Center, presents a variety of workshops for teachers and artists; and produces and distributes through its Publications Program, books, videos, and tapes on the imaginative and poetic life of childhood.
Richard Lewis has also edited and written a number of books for children and adults, among them being, Miracles: Poems by Children of the English-speaking World; In A Spring Garden (illustrated by Ezra Jack Keats); All of You Was Singing (illustrated by Ed Young); and Each Sky Has Its Words (illustrated by Gigi Alvare).
Richard Lewis has written extensively on the imagination of children, and these writings have been collected in his books, When Thought Is Young and Living By Wonder.
His latest book is In The Space of the Sky.