Lydia Fort | Breakout Session
About this session: For decades arts organizations have said they want to be multicultural, yet most were passive in their efforts to change. The one “person of color” play and the “token” staff member continued to be the norm. It has become clear that structural change within the organization is critical. In addition to examining decision making and culture, deeply embedded beliefs and values need to be addressed on the individual level. How can we help organizations become transforming institutions where diversity, in all its forms, is viewed as an asset and policies and procedures are intentional in creating full participation of all? Please join this team of artEquity alums as we discuss how to create structural change to build fully inclusive arts organizations.
Lydia Fort is a theatre maker and educator. As a director, Lydia has directed at Cygnet Theatre, Diversionary Theatre, Perseverance Theatre, Women’s Project Theatre, Women Center Stage, Urban Stages, McCarter Theatre YouthInk! Festival, New Federal Theatre, Ensemble Studio Theater, Classical Theatre of Harlem, freeFall Theatre, Hangar Theatre, Planet Connections Festivity (where she was honored with the 2013 Best Director and Greener Planet Awards) as well as other festivals including the New Black Fest, 48 Hours in Harlem and the Fire This Time Festival. She was a Time Warner Foundation Fellow of the 2012-2014 Lab at Women’s Project Theater, a TCG New Generations Future Leaders Grantee, New York Theatre Workshop Directing Fellow, and Drama League Directing Fellow. Lydia is the co-founder and artistic director of Akadēmeia Theatre Company; and has penned two performance pieces, Welcome to My Body and S/HE, which explore identity, culture, the body and illness. She was a member of the US delegation to the International Theatre Institute’s World Congress in China in 2011. Lydia received a BA from New York University and an MFA in Directing from the University of Washington. She is an Assistant Professor at Emory University where she teaches directing, acting, African American theatre, and ecology+theatre.