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TRaC Instructors Shea, Andrey, Eisa and Brian strike a pose.
Emily Alexander (Film TRaC)
Emily Alexander is a journalist and film programmer. She has contributed criticism to Flaunt, VICE, and Flavorpill.com among others. She is currently a member of Paper Tiger Television, a 30-year activist media collective comprised of artists and educators. Aside from overseeing distribution and community partnerships for Paper Tiger TV, Emily has also assisted film programs for the United Nations, the High Museum, and Independent Filmmaker Project. She is a graduate of The New School's Eugene Lang College and Parsons School of Design for Writing and Visual Art.
Elisa Davis (Dance TRaC)
Elisa Davis is a dancer, choreographer, producer and educator. She has performed with Tze Chun Dance Company, Motley Dance, Zoe|Juniper, Subtle Details Dance Theater, Meghan Frederick/Difficult Dance. She was a teaching assistant for acclaimed dance critic and regular TRaC guest speaker Elizabeth Zimmer at Hollins University in 2012 and has led programs for middle school students in history and Hebrew for the past six years. Ms. Davis graduated from Barnard College as a double major in Dance and American Studies and received her Masters in Performance Studies at New York University.
Brian McCormick (Multi TRaC)
Brian McCormick is an arts activist, writer, educator, and Producing Director of Nicholas Leichter Dance. He is the long-time contributing dance editor for Gay City News, where as arts editor from 2005-2007, he earned the paper a New York Press Association award for arts coverage. McCormick is a Part-time Assistant Professor at The New School in the Media Studies MA program. Since 2003 he has taught for the Teen Reviewers and Critics (TRaC) program, and from 2009-2011 he worked as a career mentor with dance seniors at Frank Sinatra School of the Arts in Queens. As a writer, Brian has contributed to The New York Times, Dance Magazine, Movement Research Journal, Encore publications, Gold Standard Publications, and BAMbill. He is currently a guest curator on technology for the National Performing Arts Convention website, and a member of the New York Dance and Performance Awards (Bessies) committee. Brian has been a panelist, moderator, guest curator, and adjudicator for Theater Communications Group, New York Foundation for the Arts, Joyce Theater Foundation, Brooklyn Arts Council, The Field, LMCC, The Ailey Certificate School, 651 Arts, Movement Research, CMJ Music Marathon, Queer Art Impact, as well as BETA and Mixed Messages at The New School. He received a Mayor's Volunteer Service Award (1989) and was nominated for a President's Volunteer Action Award (1990) for coordinating a writing workshop with homeless youth at Street Work Project, a Victim Services program of the City of New York.
Winter Miller (Theater TRaC)
Winter Miller is currently working on the play The Arrival (dev. with Sundance Institute, The Playwrights Center, Hedgebrook, Voice & Vision, New Georges, The New Group) and the musical Amandine (dev. with Joe's Pub, NYTW, Theatreworks, Orchard Project). She is a member of the Obie-winning playwriting collective 13 Playwrights (13P), a core writer with Playwright's Center (2011-2014) and a New Georges affiliated artist. Winter's play In Darfur premiered in a sold-out run at the Public Theater, then was presented as a one-night only SRO performance at the 1800-seat Delacorte in Central Park, a first for a play by a woman. The play won the 2006 Two-Headed Challenge. Winter traveled to the Chad/Sudan border with her former boss, New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof. Other plays include: The Penetration Play (13P), Paternity (Cherry Lane), Conspicuous (Keen Company's Keen Teens), Home/Away (Theater Askew). Winter's plays have been produced nationally and in Canada and Uganda. Fellowships include: Sundance, Hedgebrook, Cherry Lane Mentor Project, The Orchard Project and Voice & Vision. She mentors gay youth with Theatre Askew's TAYPE project. The group Voices of Uganda commissioned Winter to travel to war-torn Northern Uganda to write short plays for a group of youth living in a refugee camp featured in the upcoming feature documentary "Staging Hope." Winter holds an MFA in playwriting from Columbia and BA from Smith. She has taught writing workshops for adults and youth at Primary Stages ESPA, Sundance, Theatre Askew, Stella Adler Conservatory Outreach, 52nd St. Project and Beacon High School. During her years as a journalist, Winter has written for The New York Times, New York Magazine, The Boston Globe, The International Herald Tribune, Variety, Huffington Post, The Village Voice, Ms. Magazine, and The Brooklyn Rail. She once chased a tornado and spent a week at Graceland, although not simultaneously. Her first job out of college was an NBC Page. She kept her uniform. For more info: www.wintermiller.com
Nathan Sensel (Visual Arts TRaC)
Nathan Sensel is an artist and educator who has worked with the city's youth for the past 12 years, creating leadership programs that cultivate communication, community and awareness through the arts. He developed and implemented the Apprentice Program at the Brooklyn Museum in 1998, overseeing its first five years of growth from a summer program to a yearlong internship. Most recently he was an Associate Educator for teen programs at the Museum of Modern Art. As the Assistant Director for ARTime, an independent arts and education organization, he provided access and information about contemporary art by creating online content for their website. He has been on the board of the New York City Museum Educator's Roundtable and has been a moderator for the Emerging Leaders of New York Arts Creative Conversations. Since January 2011, he has been a freelance educator at The MAD Museum, MoMA and the Whitney Museum and is dedicated to supporting artists and educators as an Adjunct Supervisor for student teachers in the Art Education program at The City College of New York.
Rico Washington (Music TRaC)
Rico Washington holds a B.A. from Fordham University's African & African-American Studies program. As a journalist, his work has appeared in Upscale, New York Moves, Wax Poetics, and Okayplayer.com. He has served as music editor for Free Magazine and a staff writer at XLR8R magazine. Aside from composing CD liner notes for albums by artists such as DJ Jazzy Jeff, Natalie Cole, and Bill Withers, he has also written bios for Olympic gold medalists, Grammy winning songwriters, and WNBA players. Rico is also the co-creator of a photojournalism project entitled We The People: The Citizens of NYCHA in Pictures + Words, on view in Spring 2013 at the Gordon Parks Gallery in the Bronx.
Kelly Anderson (Film TRaC)
Kelly Anderson is an award-winning independent producer and director of documentary and narrative films/videos. Her most recent production is EVERY MOTHER'S SON, a documentary for ITVS about mothers whose children have been killed by police officers and who have become national spokespeople on the issue of police brutality, which she produced and directed (with Tami Gold) and edited. EVERY MOTHER'S SON premiere at the 2004 Tribeca Film Festival, where it competed against 240 films for the prestigious Audience Award and won. The documentary had its broadcast premiere on August 17, 2004 on PBS's P.O.V. series, where it was seen by just under 2 million people across the United States. In early 2004, Kelly produced, directed and edited OVERCOMING THE ODDS, a short documentary about the groundbreaking Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, which will set global standards on the promotion and marketing of tobacco. OVERCOMING THE ODDS premiered at the World Social Forum, a gathering of 75,000 people in Mumbai, India, and has more than 2,500 copies in distribution as part of a successful international campaign to ratify the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, the first global public health treaty. INFACT held 250 screenings across the United States during the summer of 2004, and events have been held around the film in more than 40 countries. This film is a follow-up to MAKING A KILLING, a half-hour documentary she produced and directed (with Tami Gold) and edited that addresses the marketing practices of the tobacco industry in the developing world. MAKING A KILLING won a Grand Jury Prize for Documentary at the New York International Independent Film and Video Festival, was screened for delegates at the World Health Organization and has been aired on television in Nigeria, Serbia, Lagos and Vietnam. In 2000, Kelly completed SHIFT, a one-hour drama for ITVS about the volatile relationship between a North Carolina waitress and a telemarketing prison inmate, which premiered in January, 2000 at the Rotterdam International Film Festival and aired on PBS stations across the United States. Kelly's past documentaries include OUT AT WORK (with Tami Gold), which was screened at the 1997 Sundance Film Festival and was broadcast on the HBO series America Undercover. She is the recipient of fellowships from the Rockefeller Foundation, the American Film Institute (NEA), and the New York State Council on the Arts and has received production grants from ITVS and the Paul Robeson Fund for Independent Media. She is currently also working on GREAT UNKNOWNS, a feature-length drama based on the life of legendary song poem musician Rodd Keith.
Eisa Davis (Theater & Multi TRaC)
Eisa Davis was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Drama for her play BULRUSHER, now pulbished by Samuel French. She wrote and starred in ANGELA's MIXTAPE, named a best of 2009 by The New Yorker. Other plays include THE HISTORY OF LIGHT, PAPER ARMOR, SIX MINUTES, WARRIORS DON'T CRY and HIP HOP ANANSI, a musical collaboration with deaf and hearing performers. Eisa has received development support from the Hip Hop Theater Festival, New York Theatre Workshop, New York Stage and Film, the Culture Project, the New Group, the Women's Project, Soho Rep, the Flea, Cleveland Playhouse, Portland Center Stage, Hartford Stage, the Cherry Lane, Seattle Rep, Yale University, the Nuyorican Poets Cafè, and the Schomburg Center for Black Research. Honors include the Helen Merrill Award, the John Lippmann New Frontier Award, fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Cave Canem, the Van Lier and Mellon Foundations, and commissions from GAle GAtes et al and the Geva Theatre/NYSCA. Her writing has appeared in numerous publications, including Greg Tate's Everything But The Burden, Kevin Powell's Step Into A World, American Theatre and The Source. Eisa's essay in Rebecca Walker's To Be Real has been read in women's studies courses at universities around the country for the last decade. She has also written for the Oxygen/BET animated series Hey Monie. As an actor, Eisa has appeared on The Wire, Law and Order, and Cosby. Favorite roles include June in Adrienne Kennedy's Obie-winning June and Jean in Concert at the Public Theater, Veronica in Valley Song at the Alliance Theatre, Delia in Blues for an Alabama Sky at the Old Globe, and Undine in Lynn Nottage's Fabulation at Sundance Theatre Lab. She also stars in the acclaimed independent films Brass Tacks and Robot Stories. Upcoming: Confess and All Fall Down. Eisa has performed her original songs at Joe's Pub, BAMCafè, Tonic, CB's Gallery and Lounge, Makor, and on Showtime's Soul Food. A graduate of Harvard and the Actors Studio Drama School, Eisa is a native of Berkeley, California and a resident playwright at New Dramatists.
Shea Dean (Multi TRaC)
Shea is a graduate of Brown University and Boston University's master's program in creative writing. She currently works as a travel writer and editor for the Rough Guides, Michelin Travel Guides, and various magazines, and teaches creative writing in New York's public schools through the Teachers and Writers Collaborative. She has published book reviews in The Believer, the San Francisco Bay Guardian, the San Francisco Weekly, and the Detroit Metro-Times, and has written personal essays for the Boston Globe, the Chicago Tribune, the San Francisco Chronicle, Reader's Digest, and other publications. She has held residencies at the Yaddo and Radgale art colonies and is work on a screenplay based on the work of Henry James.
Stacey Engels (Multi TRaC)
Stacey Engels is a writer and educator based in Brooklyn, New York. She co-created High 5's Teen Reviewers and Critics (TRaC) Program in 2002 and was awarded the 2005 PaseSetter Award Honorable Mention for her contribution to the field of after school education in NYC. She received her MFA in Playwriting from The New School in 1997. Her plays have been produced and presented as staged readings in Montreal, Toronto, New York City, Chicago, Alaska and Sicily. The recipient of numerous fellowships and academic scholarships, she is a 2002 NYFA Playwriting Fellow, two-time Canada Council grant recipient and has worked in residence at Yaddo, Banff Center for the Fine Arts and Atlin Center for the Arts. Among her commissioned works are That Nameless Thing, for Julie Harris, and The Ballad of Round Eyes, for Visible Theatre, Inc.
Karen Hartman (Theater & Multi TRaC)
Karen Hartman's eighteen plays include: Going Gone (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, NEA Special Project Grant); Anatomy 1968 (Summer Play Festival); Gum (WomenÂ’s Project, Center Stage, Magic Theater); Motherbone (opera libretto, composed by Graham Reynolds, Loewe Award, Salvage Vanguard Theater); Girl Under Grain (Best Drama in NY Fringe, P73 Productions); Alice: Tales of a Curious Girl (AT&T Onstage Award, Dallas Theater Center); and Leah's Train (Summer Cabaret at Yale). Her work has been supported by the Rockefeller Foundation, the N.E.A., the Helen Merrill Foundation, a Daryl Roth "Creative Spirit" Award, a Hodder Fellowship, and a Fulbright Scholarship. Gum and The Mother of Modern Censorship are published by TCG and DPS; Troy Women is anthologized in Backstage Book's Divine Fire. A resident playwright at New Dramatists, she has been on faculty at Yale College and Bennington College, in addition to guest teaching in M.F.A. and undergraduate programs around the country. She currently teaches at the Yale School of Drama.
Andrey Henkin (Music TRaC)
Andrey Henkin is a graduate of New York University's School of Journalism. He began his writing career as "Music" and then "News Editor" of his high school newspaper. In college he contributed to the college journal as well as doing copyediting for the Asian American cultural magazine Realizasian. In 2000, he began contributing regularly to the award-winning AllAboutJazz.com website and in 2002 co-founded the print gazette, AllAboutJazz-New York (AAJ-NY), the definitive guide to jazz and improvised music in New York City. AAJ-NY has been nominated for Best Periodical Covering Jazz by the Jazz Journalists Association. In addition to his editorial duties with AAJ-NY, Andrey contributes as a freelance writer to Cadence, Signal to Noise, E! Magazine and as a liner notes writer for various labels and artists. He also does work for the National Endowment of the Arts Jazz Masters Program and the Jazz Journalist Association.
Karen Jones (Visual Arts TRaC)
Karen E. Jones is an independent curator and critic. Her most recent project "Exceeding Paint/Expanding Painting" was exhibited at the Pratt Manhattan Gallery with an accompanying catalogue (2006). Jones is a Ph.D. candidate in the Art History Department at Columbia University. She has taught as an adjunct professor at Montclair State University, Pratt Institute and Tyler School of Art. Recently, she taught Art History at The Fieldston School. She has also lectured at MoMA and the International Center for Photography.
Christine Jowers (Dance TRaC)
Christine Jowers founded The Dance Enthusiast, a website dedicated to telling the stories of dance in New York City, in 2007. She is a writer, editor, interviewer, videographer, and sometimes photographer for TDE. Ms. Jowers was a professional dancer from 1985-January 2011. She has performed work by the early masters of modern dance (Isadora Duncan, Doris Humphrey, Eleanor King, Jean Erdman, Anna Sokolow, Paul Sansardo and Murray Louis) as well as contemporary choreographers and performance artists. In 1997 she embarked on a solo performance career, creating and producing shows celebrating the voice of women in dance history. Her work has been presented in New York City, the UK, and Caribbean. Ms. Jowers graduated from Goucher College with honors and a degree in Dance History and Criticism. In addition to her writing on The Dance Enthusiast, she has been published by the Hopkins Review (Johns Hopkins University's literary journal) and Dance/USA. Check out The Dance Enthusiast at www.dance-enthusiast.com
Laurence Maslon (Film TRaC)
Laurence Maslon is Associate Chair and Associate Arts Professor at the Graduate Acting Program at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, with an affiliation in Drama and the Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program. He hosts his own radio show, Broadway to Main Street on WPPB-FM, the East End NPR affiliate. His books include Some Like It Hot: The 50th Anniversary Companion, The South Pacific Companion and The Sound of Music Companion (Simon and Schuster). Along with Michael Kantor, he was nominated for an Emmy for writing the six-part PBS series Make 'Em Laugh: The Funny Business of America, and together they created the companion book to the series (Twelve Publishing). He also cowrote two episodes of Broadway: The American Musical with Kantor and its companion volume. He wrote the acclaimed American Masters/Thirteen documentary Richard Rodgers: The Sweetest Sounds and is the editor of Kaufman & Co., the Library of America edition of George S. Kaufman's plays, as well as his official website, www.georgeskaufman.com. He has written concerts and programs for Jazz at Lincoln Center, the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian, the Chicago Humanities Festival, and Carnegie Hall. He received his BA from Brown University and his MA from Stanford University's PhD program in Directing and Dramatic Criticism.
Anna Mecugni (Visual Arts TRaC)
Anna Mecugni is an art historian specializing in contemporary art. She was a member of Robert Storr's curatorial team for the 2007 Venice Biennale and led a video documentation initiative for the Biennale's Historic Archives of Contemporary Arts in collaboration with the UniversitÃ¥ di Venezia. As a freelance writer and critic, Mecugni has published in English and Italian. She recently started a series of video interviews titled "Everyday Matters" for MUSEO, formerly Columbia University's Journal of Contemporary Art, relaunching in late February. The first interview features New York-based artist Phoebe Washburn. Mecugni has lectured extensively in the US and abroad. Presently, she is a lecturer at the Museum of Modern Art. Mecugni holds a BA and MA from the UniversitÃ¥ di Bologna and is at work on a dissertation on Alighiero Boetti, Luigi Ontani and Francesco Clemente at CUNY's Graduate Center.
Matthew D. Morrison (Music TRaC)
Matthew D. Morrison, a native of Charlotte, North Carolina, is a doctoral student of Musicology at Columbia University in New York City. His research interests include critical race analysis, performance and dance studies, Modernism and fin-de-siecle Vienna, and popular music in America. Matthew is currently an instructor in Music and Africana studies at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY, and is also the curator of music/artistic productions through MaDMo Impresario Curations. Matthew has instructed promising youth through the W.E.B. Du Bois scholars program at Princeton University, as well as through the New York City Arts Connection's Teen Reviewers and Critics (TRaC) music criticism program. He is currently the Editor-in-Chief (2011-2012) of the Columbia's music journal, Current Musicology.
Casey Ruble (Visual Arts TRaC)
Casey Ruble is an artist, curator, educator, and freelance editor. Her work has been included in exhibitions in both the U.S. and abroad, among them at Nicole Klagsbrun Gallery, Parker's Box, and Black & White Gallery. She has curated and assistant-curated exhibitions at Von Lintel Gallery, the Hunter College galleries, and the Center Gallery at Fordham University, and her work and curatorial projects have been reviewed in publications including the New York Times, the New Yorker, and Sculpture Magazine. She has taught studio art at Fordham University since 2001 and has filled semester-long positions at Yeshiva Stern and Fairleigh Dickinson. She also works as a freelance editor for W. W. Norton, Bloomsbury, and the Guerrilla Girls, and she has contributed to ARTnews and written essays for exhibition catalogues including P.S.1's "Greater New York" and Katy Siegel's "Everybody Now." She received her MFA in painting from Hunter College in 2002 and her BA from Smith College in 1995.
Suzanne Snider (Fast TRaC)
Suzanne Snider is a writer based in New York City, where she currently works as a freelance journalist, teacher, and Oral Historian. She received an MFA in Nonfiction from Columbia University and a BA in English and Dance from Wesleyan University. She frequently contributes to The Believer Magazine, and her work has also been published or is forthcoming in The Oklahoma Review, Legal Affairs, Watchword, Fort Necessity, Anathema, and the Aux Arc Review. Snider has received numerous fellowships, including residencies at Yaddo (2005), the MacDowell Colony (2004), and the Ucross Foundation Center (2002), and awards including a Hertog Fellowship, Olin Fellowship, and Atticus Scholarship. In 2004, her book Heaven and Hell was published by Grove Atlantic under a pseudonym, and it was promptly named an "Essential," by Elle (Dec '04). She has taught writing in The College of New Rochelle's School of New Resources Program, and art criticism in High5's TRAC program. Currently, she teaches Writing and Documentary Studies at The New School University, and works as an interviewer at The Columbia University Oral History Archive.
Sarah Valdez (Visual Arts TRaC)
Sarah Valdez is an independent critic and occasional curator living in New York City. Currently she is the Senior Editor at the New Museum of Contemporary Art. Sarah has written on art for publications including Art in America, ARTnews, Paper, Time Out New York and Interview, among others. She also contributed to Curve: The Female Nude Now, recently published by Rizzoli.