Danielle Adair is an artist, performer, and writer. Her works have premiered in exhibition, screening, theater and concert venues internationally. She is the author of From JBAD: Lessons Learned (Les Figues Press) based on her time as “embedded media” with US Forces in Afghanistan and for which she created the feature-length video-performance FIRST ASSIGNMENT. Her second feature-length work And I Think I Like It. is a collection of 13 video-song-poems with an accompanying artist book (Edition Solitude). As part of her three-part video-performance Caution, bomb, Adair created and premiered her experimental opera Caution Baum with the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Stuttgart. Adair is a California Community Foundation Visual Arts Fellow, a Center for Cultural Innovation – ARC Grantee, the recipient of The Louis Sudler Prize in the Performing and Creative Arts, and Fellowships at Akademie Schloss Solitude, Digital Arts Studios Belfast, and I-Park Foundation, among other distinctions. She holds her BA with Honors in Human Development and in Visual Arts from The University of Chicago and her MFA in Critical Studies and in Studio Arts from California Institute of the Arts.
In her work and writing Adair is interested in the construct and guarantor of persona, conceptions of psychopathology, immaterial and emotional labor, and the relationship between persona and machine intelligences. danielleadair.com
Kari Barclay (they/them or he/him) is an award-winning writer, director, and researcher based in the Bay Area. They have made work regionally and in New York at venues including the San Francisco Mime Troupe, Round House Theater, and Manbites Dog. Their original play CAN I HOLD YOU? was the first full-length piece about asexuality performed in the U.S. and enjoyed a sold-out run in San Francisco and workshop in New York. Their newest play STONEWALLIN’ was a Bay Area Playwrights Festival Finalist, one of the top 35 plays selected from 735 from around the country.
Kari’s research interests include gender and sexuality studies, theater directing, consent theory, and asexuality studies. Their dissertation, Directing Desire, examines contemporary American theater directing in relation to sexuality, race, and consent. Kari is a Ric Weiland Fellow, Carl Weber Memorial Fellow, Preparing Future Professors Fellow, and recipient of the Sudler Award in the Arts. They received their BA in Theater Studies and Political Science from Duke University, where they were an Angier B. Duke Scholar and recipient of the Samuel DuBois Cook Award for service to social equity. kari-barclay.com
MARINA J. BERGENSTOCK
Marina J. Bergenstock (she/her) is a director, dramaturg, performer, and educator. She holds an MFA in Directing from the University of Iowa. She formerly was on faculty at Beloit College in Wisconsin. Marina’s research interests include representation in a post-colonial context, hyphenated and diasporic identities and the performance of them in the Arab world and in the United States, and theatre as a catalyst for political, structural, and social reform.
This past year, she was the Assistant Director and Dramaturg for the world premiere production of Fouad Teymour’s Twice, Thrice, Frice… at Silk Road Rising. She has also directed at Beloit College where she received a KCACTF Certificate of Merit for her direction of The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui, Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre, CMT Bartlesville, and in Rep Lab at Milwaukee Repertory Theatre. She has trained with SITI Company during their month-long intensive. Her work has been published in MATC’s Theatre/Practice, Eumenica, and in Arab Stages. MarinaBergenstock.com
Emily Buttner holds a BA in Comparative Literature and Society from Columbia University. Before arriving at Stanford, she spent four years in Ibaraki, Japan on the JET Programme, where she was teaching English, advising, studying Japanese, and lecturing and singing in her community. Her current research interests include, but are not limited to, trans-national and intercultural performance, adaptation, and the performativity of language and translation.
Emily is primarily an actor and singer, but has engaged with theater practice from a variety of angles. While an undergraduate student, she worked with several theater companies around Manhattan, including internships in properties at Punchdrunk’s “Sleep No More”, and in stage management with the Keen Company at Theatre Row. Emily also enjoys opera and collecting Japanese puns.
Danee Conley is a dramaturg turned academic in Stanford TAPS’ PhD program. She received her BA in Theater/Dance and American Studies from Trinity College in Hartford, CT as well as her MA in Theater and Performance Studies from Washington University in St. Louis, MO. She has also studied with the La Mama Experimental Theatre Club and the Shakespeare Globe in London.
Her current research looks at contemporary strategic board games as they intersect with postcolonial spectatorship, activism, and identity formation through game play. Her interests also include game design, intent versus impact, and the potential for cultural or ethical consulting in gaming companies, both board and video.
In her theater practice, she has served the role of lead production dramaturg for university and student theater as well as professional companies since beginning her creative practice in 2012. The most recent productions include Molly’s Hammer at the Repertory Theater of St. Louis, The Mammaries of Tiresias with the Stanford Women* in Theater, and A Raisin in the Sun with Stanford’s Theater and Performance Studies Department.
Sariel Golomb holds a BA in English and Dance, with departmental honors, from Columbia University. Her research focuses on intersections between scopophilia and corporeality in western visual culture with particular attention to choreographies of the deviant, grotesque, abject, and violent in modern and contemporary dance/performance. Her interests include dance studies, visual culture, reception studies, medical humanities, critical race studies, and feminist and queer theories.
As a dancer Sariel has performed works by Amara Tabor-Smith, Gesel Mason, Trisha Brown, Gwen Welliver, Alexandra Beller, Pam Tanowitz, Sam Kim, and Heidi Henderson. Sariel is also a critic, dramaturg, and curator, and her writings on dance have appeared in Dance Research Journal, The Brooklyn Rail, and the blogs of The Kitchen and LUMBERYARD Contemporary Performing Arts. Sariel coordinates the Future Artists Initiative (FAI), a national scholarship dedicated to increasing diversity in pre-professional dance education.
Emma holds a Master of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice from Oxford University, a Bachelor in Philosophy and Political Science from Sciences Po-Paris and La Sorbonne. She comes to the field of performance studies with extensive work and research experience in the Lebanese criminal justice system. She is now looking to explore the intersections of performance studies, security sector reform, and conflict resolution processes. She is also a film-maker eager to use visual media and new technologies to bridge those fields. Her first dance film, advocating against arbitrary detention in Lebanon, got selected for screening in the San Francisco Dance Film Festival.
TIMOTHY S. JONES II
Tim (he/him/his) is a producer, scholar-activist, and multi-disciplinary artist with intersecting research interests in race, sexuality, aesthetics of risk, socio-political choreographies, performance ethnography, visual culture, and memory. He is primarily interested in the Black male body in undervalued movement and performance practices (BDSM, erotic film & dancing, fraternal stepping & strolling, bodybuilding, protests, roller disco, cosmetology, vogue & walking the balls). Recently, Tim worked on a project that looked at sex work and digital performance in the age of COVID-19. He is currently conducting research on Black barbers and the role of surveillance during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Prior to Stanford, Tim earned an MFA in Theater Management and Producing from Columbia University as well as a BA in English and a BA in Drama from Morehouse College. Tim has trained at The Ailey School, London’s Central School of Ballet, Shanghai Theater Academy, the British American Drama Academy, Spelman Dance Theater, and Earl Mosley’s Institute of the Arts. Tim has also worked at Sleep No More, New York Live Arts, Boneau/Bryan-Brown, Parsons Dance, Park Avenue Armory, and New York Theater Workshop.
From 2015-2019 Tim worked as a senior-level administrator for NHPS. It was there he led the arts program and curriculum, created and managed community partnerships, ran a leadership mentoring program for at-risk young men of color, and occasionally taught a course called “Facing History and Ourselves.” He also Founded the Connecticut Regional August Wilson Monologue Competition (now managed by Long Wharf Theatre & Yale Repertory Theatre), which invites high school students from all over the state of Connecticut to learn and perform the works of August Wilson.
Outside of his professional and artistic endeavors, Tim is involved in homeless, foster care, and carceral advocacy work. Tim is deeply committed to interrogating cultural competency, programming, engagement initiatives, and the complexities surrounding the representation of people of color in the arts and the academy.
ANNA JAYNE KIMMEL
Anna Jayne Kimmel is a PhD candidate in Performance Studies pursuing a minor in Anthropology and graduate certificate in African Studies, with an emphasis in dance, memory, and public performance as politics. Her current research intersects critical dance studies and crowd theory, to analyze the resulting representations of race, national identity, and democratic affect, especially as motivated by contemporary Algerian demonstrations. As a dancer, Kimmel has performed the works of: Ohad Naharin, Trisha Brown, John Jaspers, Francesca Harper, Rebecca Lazier, Olivier Tarpaga, Marjani Forte, Susan Marshall, Loni Landon, and Christopher Ralph, amongst others. At Stanford, she devised SOLI, an evening length dance which centered experiences from death row. She is the graduate coordinator of the Arts and Justice workshop at the Stanford Humanities Center.
Kimmel holds an AB from Princeton University in French Studies with certificates in African Studies and Dance. Her writing appears in Performance Research, with reviews published in The Drama Review (TDR) and Dance Research Journal. She currently serves on the Future Advisory Board to Performance Studies international, and as the reviews editor of Performance Research.
Suhaila Meera holds a BA in History and Film from Cornell University, has studied acting with Barry John and at the Stella Adler Studio, and has a background in jazz, hip-hop, and Indian folk dance. Before beginning her Ph.D., she worked in operations and development at Delhi-based arts management firm Teamwork Arts, New York-based nonprofit Girls Write Now, and The Juilliard School. Recent artistic endeavors have included dancing with Chocolate Heads Movement Band (2017), directing Nick Payne’s Constellations (2019), and dramaturging The Seagull (2019) and Everybody (2020) at Stanford. Her research explores the intersections between childhood studies, refugee art and performance, and theories of acting and affect.
Rishika Mehrishi holds a BA (honors) in History from Delhi University, and an MA in Performance Studies from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, and Tisch School of the Arts, New York University. Her research interest in human-nonhuman performances in South Asia intersects multispecies ethnography, new materialism, and postcolonial studies. Her dissertation, Performing Entanglement: More-than-Human Repertoires in South Asia, concerns the way animal materialities and metaphors shape contemporary discourses on caste, religion, gender, and sexuality in South Asia. Her writings have appeared in Theater Journal, Modern Drama, and Marg Magazine. She has been an Asian Cultural Council Grantee, serves as a Research Assistant at Stanford’s Center for South Asia, and is currently the Carl Weber Memorial Fellow at Stanford TAPS.
Rishika is also a performance artist and makes durational art that draws heavily on everyday rituals and laboring bodies. She has performed at various festivals and performance venues in New York City. In 2018, she conceived and performed in Out of Breath, a piece about migrant worker crises, at Stanford University.
Rishika’s expertise in archiving lies at the cusp of her academic and artistic pursuits. Before joining Stanford, she worked on theater and performance based archival collections in Delhi, Abu Dhabi, Seoul, and New York. She is currently co-authoring a book on Richard Schechner’s Ramleela archives.
Westley holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Music with additional studies in German Language and Culture and Arts Management from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Westley’s current research interests include Black performance and racial identity development; post-colonial and critical opera studies; and the performance and perception of raced and gendered sound.
Westley is also a vocalist and multidisciplinary artist. Select roles include Boy Sam (David Lang’s the difficulty of crossing a field), Ovlur (Bordin’s Prince Igor), and Benvlio (Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette.) Westley has also produced and curated several works exploring themes of identity, including an adaptation of Samuel Barber’s Knoxville Summer of 1915 addressing Black lived experience in the American South, and Afrika Singt a collaborative work exploring depictions of Afro-Deutsch and Afro-American Identity in Germany.
Rashi has an MA in Performance Studies from New York University, MA in Conflict and Peace Studies from Jamia Millia Islamia University and a Bachelors in Economics and Computers from Delhi University. Rashi was actively involved in Delhi University’s campus theatre where she was a member of, and later headed, Maitreyi College’s dramatics society Abhivyakti. She acted in various productions such as In The Name of Honour (a devised protest performance against honour killings in India), O Ibsen (based on Henrik Ibsen’s plays), Akka Amoli Anni (an adaptation of Munshi Premchand’s story ‘Bade Bhaisaheb’) and Eklavya Uvach (a satire on the prevalent caste system in India), which were performed at different university festivals in India. Amongst these the play O Ibsen was performed as part of the Norwegian Collegiate Theatre Festival in Delhi in 2010. She recently co-directed a devised experimental performance, based on Sadaat Hasan Manto’s partition stories, titled Enter At Your Own Risk. A seditious play in a few scenes showing sanity and insanity as performed by actors of National Paagalkhana — by order of Toba Tek Singh. She has also been associated with different socially and politically active theatre groups in Delhi in different capacities.
Her research interests include exploring the relationship between aesthetics, politics and performance; postcolonial studies; and representation & subjecthood of the subaltern in theatrical as well as every day performances. Rashi was a recipient of Gallatin Global Fellowship in Human Rights at NYU as part of which she explored the role of theatre in fostering the human rights discourse, specifically looking at theatre practices of Palestinian artists in the West Bank.
THAO P. NGUYEN
Thao P. Nguyen holds a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree from the University of California at Berkeley, a Master of Arts (MA) degree in Communication Studies with a focus on Performance Studies from San Francisco State University, and a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in Psychology from Brown University. As a scholar, her research areas include queer and trans* people of color (QTPOC) literature, performance and film; the intersection of sexual violence and structural violence; and queer migration. She is particularly interested in increasing the visibility and understanding of issues most pertinent to populations experiencing multiple vectors of structural oppression, such as Asian American women and QTPOC. Nguyen is a playwright, solo performer, and comic storyteller. Her full-length one-person comedy Fortunate Daughter was named one of the top ten Bay Area plays of 2013 by KQED Year in the Arts. Nguyen has been a member of the Solo Performance Workshop since 2007. She served as the Artistic Director for the Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center of San Francisco from 2013 to 2014. For more information, please visit www.thaosolo.com.
Zoe Ryu holds a BA in Economics from Korea University and an MA in English literature from Seoul National University. The main concentration of her current studies lie primarily on the intersection of race and gender in American theatre and literature. Her theatre practice focuses mainly on dramaturgy – in Seoul, where her work is based, she worked with prominent Korean theatre companies and produced plays such as Machinal by Sophie Treadwell and A Fortunate Day by Hyun Jin-geon both performed at the Yeohangza Theatre. Her future aspirations lie in intercultural performance that makes use of traditional Korean movements, dance and sound derived from Korean masked dance and traditional Korean opera.
Amani Starnes is an actress, dancer, writer, producer, and singer in Stanford’s PhD TAPS program. She graduated from Yale University, where she majored in Theater Studies with a concentration in Performance and African American Studies.
Her work focuses primarily on race and gender in performance and culture. Recently, Amani received critical acclaim in such publications as The Washington Post, Jezebel, The Jane Dough, Madame Noire, and Racialicious for a web series she wrote, produced, and headlined, The United Colors of Amani. In the tradition of Robert Townsend’s Hollywood Shuffle, the series explores Amani’s uncomfortable racial adventures in Hollywood.
In addition to her web presence, Amani is the face of several national commercials. She also sings, choreographs, produces content for networks like AOL and AMC, and performs in independent films, plays, concerts, music videos, rock operas and musicals. She has been a member of Tim Robbins’ The Actors’ Gang theater company for over a decade.
Matt holds a BA in Literature from Harvard College and a MA in the Humanities from the University of Chicago. He is a theater historian focused primarily on the politics and aesthetics of German theater and performance from the late 19th century to present day. His dissertation is critical reassessment of the work of director Christoph Schlingensief in relation to expansion of global capitalism after German reunification. Matt has also directed and sound designed productions at Stanford and beyond.
Adin Walker is movement director + associate director for the dance, puppetry, and environmentalist company, Phantom Limb, who’s production Falling Out about the 2011 radiation disaster in Fukushima (BAM Next Wave Premiere, 2018) was featured on the cover of American Theatre’s March 2020 issue on theater and climate change. As a director and choreographer, Adin collaborates with writers and composers Allison Gregory, Anya Pearson, Ava Geyer, Edwin Rosales, Jaime Jarrett, Khiyon Hursey, L M Feldman, Philip Dawkins, Roger Q. Mason, and Yilong Liu. He trained in classical, contemporary, and hip hop dance, having performed principal roles in works by Maleek K. Washington, Christopher K. Morgan, Alex Neoral, and Karole Armitage. He collaborates often with his sister, director and filmmaker Mia Walker, and line produces for Tony Award-Winner Mara Isaacs of Octopus Theatricals.
Some of Adin’s research, writing, and teaching interests include: the reverberations of the Fairy literary tradition in dance and music video; generational trauma, aging, and building queer futures after the HIV/AIDS pandemic of the 1980’s; and, the musical Cats. Adin graduated from Princeton with degrees in English, Theater, and Feminist, Gender, & Sexuality Studies. Adin curates the blog SideLight. More information about him and his work at: www.adinwalker.com
Michele Wells is a second-year PhD student in the Department of Theater & Performance Studies. She is an actress, playwright, director, and producer of theater. In her time at Stanford, she has developed a body of work in experimental film and performances that engage augmented and virtual realities.
Michele’s present research interests include practice-as-research, theater as a mode of philosophical dialectic, and the intersection of performance studies, economics, and computer science. In the era of COVID-19, Michele is asking questions about the theater as a moral institution and how theater can serve the digital age. In 2020-21, Michele is adapting by developing a body of work in response to the question of storytelling’s value in digital mediums including video games, augmented reality, virtual reality, and more. One of her current projects seeks to advance the use of head-mounted devices to serve incarcerated persons and vulnerable youth. She remains committed to theater’s potential role in reconciling the conflicts that rest of the foundation of the modern world.
As the founder of Run On Productions LLC, Michele produced The War at Home, winner Best Play, Atlanta Black Theater Festival (2014.) She is also the creator of Theater for Humanity a program that addresses the hostility between formerly incarcerated persons and police officers with the aim of transforming both groups’ decision making through dialogue and reconciliation. She is presently working on a new play, The Bookstore and a feature film, Black Pearl. Finally, to support other artist-entrepreneurs, Michele created Elevate the Artist, a collection of workshops, toolkits and more, designed for individual artists.