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About The Speakers
Anna Deavere Smith is an actress and playwright. She is credited with having developed a new form of theater through which she creates portraits of real people based on interviews, revealing aspects of American identity. In original pieces covering topics as diverse as the school-to-prison pipeline (Notes from the Field), race-related violence (Twilight: Los Angeles and Fires in the Mirror), and health care (Let Me Down Easy), Smith interviews hundreds of individuals and creates plays that portray diverse communities and world views. Smith is recognizable to television and film audiences from performances in Black-ish, The West Wing, Nurse Jackie, For the People, Philadelphia, The American President and Rachel Getting Married. Her many honors include a MacArthur Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship for Humanities, and the National Humanities Medal bestowed by President Obama. She is also an author and a professor at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. In the 1980s, she was a faculty member with Lincoln Center Institute, the education and research division of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts at the time.
Dr. Christopher Emdin is an associate professor in the Department of Mathematics, Science, and Technology at Teachers College, Columbia University, where he also serves as Associate Director of the Institute for Urban and Minority Education. He’s the creator of the #HipHopEd social media movement and Science Genius B.A.T.T.L.E.S., author of the award-winning book Urban Science Education for the Hip-Hop Generation and the New York Times Best Seller For White Folks Who Teach In The Hood and the Rest of Y’all Too. Emdin is currently an advisor and scholar-in-residence at Lincoln Center.
Join Lincoln Center April 6–10 for a three-part series with Anna Deavere Smith, including a conversation, keynote talk, and staged reading.
Image: Anna Deavere Smith / photo by Kwaku Alston; Christopher Emdin / photo courtesy of Lincoln Center and the speaker