FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Karen James Cody
Publicist, Black Women Playwright’s Group
Loyola’s Department of Fine and Performing Arts and Black Women Playwrights’ Group Present First National Conference
Loyola Takes Part in History as it Hosts the First National Meeting for Women of Color Writing Drama
CHICAGO, August 26, 2008 – Loyola University Chicago’s Department of Fine and Performing Arts (DFPA) will participate in a historic occasion as it hosts, along with the Black Women Playwrights’ Group (BWPG), Whisper. Laugh. Shout. Tell The Story: First National Meeting of Women of Color Writing Drama. The conference will take place September 4-7, 2008, at Loyola University Chicago’s newly renovated Mundelein Center for the Fine and Performing Arts on Loyola’s Lake Shore Campus.
An invitation to all women of color who write drama for stage, screen, or the airwaves, this event is the first occasion in which all of these diverse talents will come together to share their work and artistic visions. The four-day conference will include a staged reading, an awards dinner, workshops, and small-group discussions on the playwrights’ experiences. Lynn Nottage, winner of the MacArthur Genius Award in playwriting, will speak at the event, and Carla Ching, Nambi E. Kelley, Tanya Saracho, and other prominent playwrights will be featured in readings throughout the conference. In addition, Loyola DFPA Professor Jonathan Wilson, a well-known director at regional theatres across the nation, will direct the staged reading.
“As theatres across the country cry out for new works for the American literary canon, BWPG’s nurturing of emerging playwrights over the past two decades has positioned us to be part of the solution,” says BWPG President Karen L.B. Evans. “This first national conference will bring together a broad group of women writers, as well as theatres who have long histories of developing new works by women of color.”
This conference promotes the important missions of the BWPG and Loyola’s DFPA. For Loyola’s fine and performing arts program, the conference is the beginning of a year-long focus on gender, diversity, and new initiatives in the American theatre.
For BWPG, a Washington DC-based service and advocacy group for African-American playwrights who write for the professional theatre, the conference is a way to further its organizational mission as it celebrates the diversity of experiences of being female, and of color, in America, while acknowledging our many cultural commonalities.
About the Department of Fine and Performing Arts
Loyola’s Department of Fine and Performing Arts combines the disciplines of dance, music, theatre, and the visual arts and provides quality education to students studying any of the arts. This alignment of creative energies, which helps foster interdisciplinary collaboration, combined with the renovation of two buildings on the Lake Shore Campus, have inspired a renaissance of the arts at Loyola.
About Loyola University Chicago
Committed to preparing people to lead extraordinary lives, Loyola University Chicago was founded in 1870 and is the nation’s largest Jesuit, Catholic university. Loyola has a total enrollment of more than 15,500 students, which includes nearly 10,000 undergraduates hailing from all 50 states and 82 foreign countries. The University has four campuses: three in the greater Chicago area and one in Rome, Italy. Loyola also serves as the U.S. host university to the Beijing Center for Chinese Studies in Beijing, China. Loyola’s ten schools and colleges include arts and sciences, business administration, communication, education, graduate studies, law, medicine, nursing, continuing and professional studies, and social work. Loyola offers 71 undergraduate majors, 71 undergraduate minors, 85 master’s degrees, and 31 doctoral degrees. Recognizing Loyola’s excellence in education, U.S. News & World Report has ranked Loyola consistently among the “top national universities,” and named the University a “best value” in its 2009 rankings. For more information, please visit LUC.edu.