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Press Release: Shakespeare in Prisons Conference 2018

THE OLD GLOBE to Host Leading Practitioners in the Field at
2018 SHAKESPEARE IN PRISONS CONFERENCE,
Held on the West Coast for the First Time, in Partnership with
SHAKESPEARE AT NOTRE DAME and
SHAKESPEARE BEHIND BARS,
MARCH 22–25, 2018

The Three-Day Conference Will Feature Local and International
Experts Sharing Their Collective Experiences in the Field,
Including Artists, Educators, Correctional Experts,
and Returned Citizens, and an Array of Films and Performances
Centered on the World of Corrections

SAN DIEGO (March 6, 2018) — The Old Globe is proud to partner with University of Notre Dame/Shakespeare at Notre Dame (Scott Jackson, Mary Irene Ryan Family Executive Director) and Shakespeare Behind Bars (Curt L. Tofteland, Founder and Producing Director) to host the 2018 Shakespeare in Prisons Conference (SiPC). It will be held March 22–25, 2018 at The Old Globe in San Diego, part of the evolving arts engagement and Globe for All programs designed to make theatre matter to more people. Interested members of the public are invited to join us. Registration is still available for the entire conference or for any individual days.

This third biennial international conference gives prison arts practitioners the opportunity to share their collective experiences, rejuvenate passion for their work, and build an expanded network of peers. Artists and educators engaged in transformational arts programs using Shakespeare in prisons across the U.S. and the world are brought together to explore and study the effects such programming has on prison populations. The conference promotes a collaborative learning forum where participants are exposed to a diverse array of programs that all strive for a common result: the habilitation of the inmate’s mind, heart, body, and spirit.

Shakespeare at Notre Dame organized the first Shakespeare in Prisons Conference in 2013 and the second conference in 2016. SiPC 2018, held on the West Coast for the first time, will focus on the craft and experiences of these practitioners, allowing all attendees ample time for one-on-one networking, collaboration, and practicum research through a series of diverse and comprehensive plenary sessions that foster the ongoing community of shared knowledge.

Curt L. Tofteland of Shakespeare Behind Bars has curated an exciting series of panel discussions with topics such as Pathways to Freedom: Employing and Engaging Returning Citizens; Gathering the Data: Evaluation and Research; Stories of Hope from Beyond the Razor Wire with Returned Citizens Theatre Troupe; Justice Arts Coalition; I Do Forgive Thee, Unnatural Though Thou Art; Sharing the Collective Wisdom of Correction Professionals; Where Do We Go from Here?; and Women in Practice: Female Prison Arts Practitioners. These panels will feature international female artists who work with marginalized communities, experts working with post-incarcerated populations, academic researchers studying arts in corrections, and formerly incarcerated, mixed-gender individuals who have benefited from arts in corrections programs and can discuss firsthand how their experiences in prison arts programs contributed to personal transformation.

A series of screenings will include Notes from the Cell Number 12, Love Therapy in My Second Home, Time Out of Joint: Teaching Shakespeare in Prison, and Scheherazade’s Diary. There will also be special performances, including The Peculiar Patriot by Liza Jessie Peterson, Shakespeare and the Alchemy of Gender by Lisa Wolpe, and Othello’s Tribunal by Sammie Byron.

San Diego County Sheriff William D. Gore will give the keynote address. Lead speakers will include Tofteland and Ron Anthony Brown from Shakespeare Behind Bars, Jackson and Dr. Peter Holland from Shakespeare at Notre Dame, and The Old Globe’s Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director Barry Edelstein and Director of Arts Engagement Freedome Bradley-Ballentine. The opening and closing ceremonies will honor indigenous peoples and feature Mickey Turtle (Yaqui and Mexican Nations) and Henry Edward Frank (Pomo and Yurok Nations).

Other artists and administrators in attendance are James Pillar, Erika Beth Phillips, and Catherine Hanna Schrock (Globe Teaching Artists working at Las Colinas Detention and Reentry Facility and California State Prison, Centinela), Cecelia Kouma (Playwrights Project), Christy Burgess (Robinson Community Learning Center at University of Notre Dame), Suraya Susana Keating, Lesley Schisgall Currier, and Dameion Brown (Marin Shakespeare Company), Jecoina Vinson (Drama Club), Frannie Shepherd-Bates (Detroit Public Theatre), Steve Rowland (documentary producer and educator), and. Representing the academic universe are Daniel Orth (University of San Diego), Michelle Jones (New York University), Alan Mobley (San Diego State University), Wendy Staggs (UCLA), Dr. Larry Brewster (University of San Francisco), Dr. Mary Cohen (University of Iowa), Dr. Sheila Cavanagh (Emory University), Dr. Niels Herold (Oakland University), and Dr. Sarah Beckwith (Duke University).

Artists working with incarcerated populations and returned citizens include Henry Edward Frank and Laurie Brooks (William James Association), Alma Robinson (California Lawyers for the Arts), Chuck Samuelson (Kitchen for Good, a local organization that is also catering the event), Deborah Tobola (Poetic Justice Project), Sabra Williams (Creative Acts), Dr. Sarah Woodland (Daughters of the Floating Brothel), and Johnny Stallings (Open Hearts Open Minds). International experts include Marina Kovačević and Dubravka Radusinović (Serbia), Dr. Rob Pensalfini and Dr. Michael Balfour (Australia), Alokananda Roy (India), and Zeina Daccache (Lebanon).

We are very happy to welcome those whose worlds are most affected by this work—active practitioners in corrections and the legal systems—including Kathy Myers and Jessica Barawed (San Diego County Sheriff’s Department), Cindy Cipriani (U.S. Attorney’s Office), Steve Emrick (San Quentin State Prison), Lance Eshelman (Richard J. Donovan State Prison), and Ken Phillips (California State Prison, Centinela). For a complete schedule of panels and more on our participants, please click here.

“The Old Globe strives to connect our institution with communities who’ve not enjoyed regular access to our programming,” said Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director Barry Edelstein. “Among the groups we engage, none has been more receptive to this work, nor more extraordinary to work with, than the incarcerated populations of our region. We see in their encounters with the theatre this art form’s potential to transform lives, and their enthusiasm for acting and writing reminds us how much theatre can matter in even the most complex life circumstances. We are honored to host this prestigious gathering of artists and practitioners whose work with incarcerated individuals inspires us, and whose passion sets an example to which the national field can aspire. I thank our partners at Notre Dame and of course Curt Tofteland, a national treasure, for making this conference possible.”

The Old Globe’s stature as a leading regional theatre and its international reputation for producing professional Shakespeare make this institution the ideal host for the 2018 Shakespeare in Prisons Conference. The Globe will share its exemplary work with incarcerated populations, especially its successful, ongoing partnerships with two correctional facilities: California State Prison, Centinela and Las Colinas Detention and Reentry Facility. Current programming includes free Shakespeare performances during the annual Globe for All Tour, and Reflecting Shakespeare, a program that offers an exploration of Shakespeare’s words—utilizing performance, reflection, and writing—to achieve a deeper understanding of his work and to reflect on universal themes such as redemption, forgiveness, responsibility, and transformation, allowing prisoners to discover how these plays might relate to their own personal stories. The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has awarded The Old Globe a grant for a total of $91,760 to support the expansion of Reflecting Shakespeare to an additional yard at California State Prison, Centinela.

Shakespeare at Notre Dame staged the first and second SiPC in November 2013 and January 2016, respectively. The Shakespeare in Prisons Conferences initiative is a flagship program of the Shakespeare in Prisons Network, founded at the University of Notre Dame by Curt L. Tofteland, Founder and Producing Director of Shakespeare Behind Bars; Scott Jackson, Mary Irene Ryan Family Executive Director of Shakespeare at Notre Dame; and Dr. Peter Holland, McMeel Family Chair in Shakespeare Studies at the University of Notre Dame.

This program is supported in part by The Beyster Family, Stiefel Behner Charitable Fund, Ann Davies Fund for Teaching Artists. Financial support is provided by The City of San Diego. Program Partners include Shakespeare at Notre Dame (Scott Jackson, Mary Irene Ryan Family Executive Director), Shakespeare Behind Bars (Curt L. Tofteland, Founder and Producing Director), The Old Globe (Department of Arts Engagement). Additional Partners: San Diego County Sheriff’s Department, Las Colinas Women’s Detention and Reentry Facility, California State Prison, Centinela.

The 2018 Shakespeare in Prisons Conference is generously funded in part by Shakespeare at Notre Dame and the Ryan Memorial Foundation. Financial support of The Old Globe is provided by The City of San Diego. Sponsorship of the Globe’s Reflecting Shakespeare program, serving incarcerated people at Las Colinas and Centinela, is also provided by The James Irvine Foundation and the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

REGISTRATION FEE for The Shakespeare in Prisons Conference is $275 for the entire conference, which includes a Thursday evening reception and all conference events and activities Friday through Sunday, as well as three meals a day for three days. The public is welcome to attend any or all of the days. The registration fee for Friday and Saturday is $99 for each day; Sunday’s fee is $79. Each of these packages includes the opening reception on Thursday evening. To register, click here. You can also register by phone at (619) 23-GLOBE [234-5623] or by visiting the Box Office at 1363 Old Globe Way in Balboa Park.

HOTEL INFORMATION: Attendees may reserve a room at the historic Lafayette Hotel by calling (619) 296-2101 or by emailing reservations@lafayettehotel.com. (Subject to availability.)

LOCATION and PARKING INFORMATION: The Old Globe is located in San Diego’s Balboa Park at 1363 Old Globe Way. There are numerous free parking lots available throughout the park. Guests may also be dropped off in front of the Mingei International Museum. The Balboa Park valet is also available during performances ($12), located in front of the Japanese Friendship Garden. For additional parking information visit www.BalboaPark.org. For directions and up-to-date information, please visit www.TheOldGlobe.org/Directions.

PLEASE NOTE: To look up online or GPS directions to The Old Globe, please do not use the Delivery Address above. There is only a 10-minute zone at that physical address. For GPS users, please click here for the map coordinates, and here for written directions to The Old Globe and nearby parking in Balboa Park.

CALENDAR: Uncle Vanya (2/10–3/11), American Mariachi (3/23–4/29), AXIS: Mariachi Reyna (3/31), The Wanderers (4/6–5/6), AXIS: Happy Birthday, Mr. Shakespeare! (4/21), A Thousand Splendid Suns (5/12–6/17), AXIS: coLAB Program Showcase (5/12), Native Gardens (5/26–6/24), AXIS: Kids’ Dance Party featuring Dance Evolve (6/12), The Tempest (6/17–7/22), Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax (7/2–8/12), AXIS: Fourth District Senior Center’s Globe Takeover, featuring The Seasoned Line Dancers (7/10),Barefoot in the Park (7/28–8/26), Much Ado About Nothing (8/12–9/16), AXIS: Dance Lessons featuring Elvina Addams (8/21), Heart of Rock and Roll (9/6/18-10/21), AXIS: Mexican Independence Day Celebration featuring Las Colibrí in concert(9/15), 2018 Globe Gala (9/22), AXIS: Day of the Dead Celebration (10/28).

PHOTO EDITORS: Digital images of The Old Globe’s productions are available at www.TheOldGlobe.org/press-room.

The Tony Award-winning Old Globe is one of the country’s leading professional regional theatres and has stood as San Diego’s flagship arts institution for over 80 years. Under the leadership of Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director Barry Edelstein and Managing Director Timothy J. Shields, The Old Globe produces a year-round season of 15 productions of classic, contemporary, and new works on its three Balboa Park stages: the Donald and Darlene Shiley Stage in the 600-seat Old Globe Theatre and the 250-seat Sheryl and Harvey White Theatre, both part of The Old Globe’s Conrad Prebys Theatre Center, and the 605-seat outdoor Lowell Davies Festival Theatre, home of its internationally renowned Shakespeare Festival. More than 250,000 people attend Globe productions annually and participate in the theatre’s artistic and arts engagement programs. Numerous world premieres such as the 2014 Tony Award winner for Best Musical, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, Meteor Shower, Bright Star, Allegiance, The Full Monty, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, and the annual holiday musical Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! have been developed at The Old Globe and have gone on to enjoy highly successful runs on Broadway and at regional theatres across the country.

 

x x x

 

Advance interviews are available with Director of Arts Engagement Freedome Bradley-Ballentine.
Please contact Alejandra Enciso-Dardashti to arrange at aenciso@TheOldGlobe.org or (619) 238-0043 x2356.

Click here to view the schedule as a PDF

Shakespeare in Prisons Conference
March 22 - 25, 2018
Schedule

(subject to change)

Thursday, March 22

5:00 p.m.
Reception for Conference Attendees      

Friday, March 23

8:00 a.m.
Registration, Information, and Refreshments

9:00 a.m.
Opening Ceremony: Honoring Indigenous Peoples

Mickey Turtle, member of the Yaqui and Mexica Nations

9:15 a.m.
Opening Remarks
Curt L. Tofteland, Shakespeare Behind Bars; Dr. Peter Holland, Shakespeare at Notre Dame; Scott Jackson, Shakespeare at Notre Dame; Freedome Bradley-Ballentine, The Old Globe

9:30 a.m.
Welcome to The Old Globe
Barry Edelstein, Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director, The Old Globe

10:00 a.m.
Welcome to San Diego
Special guest to be announced

10:15 a.m.
Welcome to California
Special guest to be announced

10:45 a.m.
Flash Introductions of Attendees

11:45 a.m.
Keynote Address
Sheriff William D. Gore, San Diego County

12:15 p.m.
Lunch Break

1:00 p.m.
Panel: Stories of Hope from Beyond the Razor Wire
with Returned Citizens Theatre Troupe
Daniel Orth, Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice, University of San Diego (moderator); Dameion Brown, actor, Marin Shakespeare Company; Ron Anthony Brown, Shakespeare Behind Bars; Henry Edward Frank, William James Association; Michelle Jones, New York University; Alan Mobley, San Diego State University; Wendy Staggs, UCLA Beyond Bars Fellowship, The Actors’ Gang;  Jecoina Vinson, Drama Club

2:30 p.m.
Performance and Audience Talkback: Othello’s Tribunal
by Sammie Byron
Curt L. Tofteland, Shakespeare Behind Bars (moderator); Sammie Byron, Shakespeare Behind Bars

4:30 p.m.
Panel: Pathways to Freedom: Employing and Engaging Returning Citizens
Scott Jackson, Shakespeare at Notre Dame (moderator); Suraya Susana Keating, Shakespeare for Social Justice Director, Marin Shakespeare Company; Cecelia Kouma, Playwrights Project; Kathy Myers, San Diego County Sheriff’s Department; Chuck Samuelson, Kitchen for Good; Deborah Tobola, Poetic Justice Project

6:00 p.m.
Dinner Break

7:30 p.m.
Film and Audience Talkback: Notes from the Cell Number 12

Frannie Shepherd-Bates, Shakespeare in Prison, Detroit Public Theatre (moderator); Marina Kovačević and Dubravka Radusinović, Center for Rehabilitation Through Imagination, Serbia

9:00 p.m.
Reception and Drinks

Saturday, March 24

8:00 a.m.
Registration, Information, and Refreshments

9:00 a.m.
Panel: Gathering the Data: Evaluation and Research

Dr. Rob Pensalfini, Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble, Australia (moderator); Dr. Michael Balfour, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia; Dr. Larry Brewster, University of San Francisco; Dr. Mary Cohen, University of Iowa; Alma Robinson, California Lawyers for the Arts

10:35 a.m.
Film and Audience Talkback: Love Therapy in My Second Home

Curt L. Tofteland, Shakespeare Behind Bars (moderator); Alokananda Roy, Kolkata, India

11:30 a.m.
Film: Time Out of Joint: Teaching Shakespeare in Prison,
and Panel: An Introduction to Shakespeare Central
Curt L. Tofteland, Shakespeare Behind Bars (moderator); Dr. Sheila Cavanagh, Emory University; Steve Rowland, documentary producer and educator; Jecoina Vinson, Drama Club

12:15 p.m.
Lunch Break

1:15 p.m.
Panel: Women in Practice: Female Prison Arts Practitioners
Sabra Williams, Creative Acts (moderator); Christy Burgess, Robinson Community Learning Center, University of Notre Dame; Lesley Schisgall Currier, Shakespeare for Social Justic Founder, Marin Shakespeare Company; Erika Beth Phillips, The Old Globe; Catherine Hanna Schrock, The Old Globe; Dr. Sarah Woodland, Daughters of the Floating Brothel

2:45 p.m.
Performance and Audience Talkback: Shakespeare and the Alchemy of Gender
by Lisa Wolpe
Scott Jackson, Shakespeare at Notre Dame (moderator); Lisa Wolpe, independent artist

4:30 p.m.
Panel: Sharing the Collective Wisdom of Correction Professionals
James Pillar, The Old Globe (moderator); Jessica Barawed, San Diego County Sheriff’s Department; Cindy Cipriani, U.S. Attorney’s Office, Southern District; Steve Emrick, San Quentin State Prison; Lance Eshelman, Richard J. Donovan State Prison; Ken Phillips, California State Prison, Centinela

6:00 p.m.
Panel: Justice Arts Coalition

Curt L. Tofteland, Shakespeare Behind Bars (moderator); Laurie Brooks, William James Association; Alma Robinson, California Lawyers for the Arts

6:30 p.m.
Dinner Break

7:30 p.m.
Film and Audience Talkback: Scheherazade’s Diary

Johnny Stallings, Open Hearts Open Minds (moderator); Zeina Daccache, Catharsis: Lebanese Center for Drama Therapy, Lebanon

9:00 p.m.
Reception and Drinks

Sunday, March 25

8:00 a.m.
Registration, Information, and Refreshments

9:00 a.m.
Panel: Authors Panel: I Do Forgive Thee, Unnatural Though Thou Art

Dr. Niels Herold, Oakland University (moderator); Dr. Sarah Beckwith, Duke University; Dr. Peter Holland, Shakespeare at Notre Dame

10:45 a.m.
Performance and Audience Talkback: The Peculiar Patriot
and All Day by Liza Jessie Peterson
Freedom Bradley-Ballentine, The Old Globe (moderator); Liza Jessie Peterson

12:00 p.m.
Lunch Break and Conference Evaluation: Where Do We Go from Here?
Facilitators: Dr. Peter Holland, Shakespeare at Notre Dame, Scott Jackson, Shakespeare at Notre Dame, Curt L. Tofteland, Shakespeare Behind Bars

2:00 p.m.
Closing Ceremony: Honoring Indigenous Peoples
Henry Edward Frank, member of the Pomo and Yurok Nations

2:15 p.m.
End of Conference

 

A Few Statistics:

A recent New York Magazine article outlined additional key indicators that illustrate growing support for arts organizations that can demonstrate expertise working with correctional facilities:

  • Governor Jerry Brown approved a $6 million line item in California’s 2016–2017 budget earmarked specifically for Arts in Correction, a partnership between the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and the California Arts Council, up from $2 million the previous year.
  • In 2017, all 35 prisons in California will have some kind of publicly funded arts program, up from zero a decade ago.
  • An August 2016 New York Times op-ed reported that crime rates in America are at historic lows, but incarceration numbers have more than quadrupled since the 1970s. The entire U.S. population is only 5 percent of the world’s population, but with approximately 2.3 million Americans in prison, this country has 22 percent of the world prison population.
  • In 2010, it cost about $80 billion per year to house people in U.S. prisons and jails (between $45,000 and $60,000 dollars per adult). Most classes cost approximately $1,500 per year for each participant. The recidivism rate for these individuals is very low, with the majority of them never returning to prison, saving California a lot of money.

 

Correctional facilities with ongoing partnerships with The Old Globe:

Las Colinas Detention and Reentry Facility
451 Riverview Pkwy., Santee, 92071

The Las Colinas Detention and Reentry Facility (LCDRF) serves as the primary detention facility for women in San Diego County. LCDRF opened a new and improved facility in August 2014, emphasizing academic and pre-employment classes and reentry services to better prepare inmates for successful reintegration in the community and to lower the chance of reoffending.

California State Prison, Centinela
2302 Brown Rd., Imperial, 92274

California State Prison, Centinela, is a male-only state prison located in Imperial County, California, approximately 20 miles from Imperial and El Centro. The mission of Centinela State Prison is to provide long-term confinement to men who have been convicted of felonious crimes and remanded to the State of California for incarceration. Inmate productivity and self-improvement are considered integral components to Centinela’s overall objective to reduce recidivism among those inmates incarcerated at the institution.