Virtual ConFest Celebrates Intergenerational BIPOC Theatre Leaders Working for Social Justice and Political Action

Virtual ConFest Celebrates Episode two

Virtual ConFest Celebrates

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Consortium of Asian American Theaters and Artists (CAATA) announces its roster of speakers and performers for the second episode of its ongoing monthly ConFest Virtual Series featuring the work of Asian American and BIPOC artists and theatres from across the country.

Featured guests on the episode will include Armando Huipe (Producer, Latinx Theatre Commons), Maki’ilei Ishihara (Company Actor, Honolulu Theatre for Youth), and Jonathan H. McCrory (Artistic Director, National Black Theatre). The episode will be hosted by Leslie Ishii (Artistic Director, Perseverance Theatre, Juneau, AK; Board President, CAATA) and Moses Goods (Founder & Artistic Director, ʻInamona Theatre Company, Honolulu, HI; Board Officer, CAATA).

The second episode of CAATA’s ConFest Virtual Series monthly online series, titled “Modeling Solidarity: Theater As Political Action” will broadcast on Monday, September 14, 2020 at 1PM HST, 3PM AKDT, 4PM PDT, 5PM MDT, 6PM CDT, and 7PM EDT.  The episode will focus on building coalitions between BIPOC theatre communities in this time of pandemic, revolutionary social change, and economic collapse.
The speakers will call for both learning from our Elders and the making of intergenerational connections for collaboration and political action in the service of justice. These prominent BIPOC theatre leaders will come together to share what it means to be vulnerable, to support each other’s healing, and to build true solidarity.
The episode is part of CAATA ConFest’s Virtual Series exploring the theme of the upcoming 7th Biennial Asian American Theater Festival & Conference (ConFest) “Kuʻu ʻĀina, Kuʻu Piko, Kuʻu Kahua – Return to the Source” in Honolulu, Hawaiʻi in May 2021. The in-person ConFest will center the voices of Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander theater practitioners, and feature the thriving theater community of Hawaiʻi, where Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander faces on stage are the norm, not the exception.
“Ku‘u ‘Āina, Ku‘u Piko, Ku‘u Kahua – Return to the Source” is a call to all theatre artists to reconnect with their foundations and their sources of knowledge: their land, their family, their center. The online series and its presentation of the wide diaspora of Pan Asian/Pacific Islander/MENA/Native/Indigenous American stories will be a vehicle through which both the audience and artists can ground themselves in their cultural knowledge and the many identities that we bring to our communities.
“Future episodes of the series will feature artists from across the country who represent some of the most groundbreaking work in American theatre, and includes stories from across the breadth of  the Pan Asian/Pacific Islander/MENA/Native/Indigenous American diaspora, including Hawaiʻi, Egypt, Vietnam, and more,” said CAATA ConFest Co-Chairs Leilani Chan (Founding Artistic Director, TeAda Productions) and Tammy Haili‘ōpua Baker (Associate Professor, Department of Theatre and Dance, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa).
They added, “This series is not meant to be a replacement for the conference and festival, but is an offering to begin discussions around artists, topics and themes proposed by the field that we hope will culminate in celebration when we are able to gather in person again next year. Our goal is to also continue dialogue with other BIPOC networks of color and connect artists with current BIPOC movements.”
The ConFest Virtual Series is being produced in partnership with HowlRound Theatre Commons in Boston, MA, a nonprofit organization that operates as part of Emerson Collegeʻs Office of the Arts. HowlRound provides a free and open platform for theatre-makers worldwide that amplifies progressive, disruptive ideas about the art form and facilitates connection between diverse practitioners. The series will be presented on HowlRound TV, HowlRoundʻs global, commons-based peer produced, open access live streaming and video archive project.
Maximiliano Urruzmendi-Mele will be the series Technical Director, and CAATA staff member Ariel Estrada will be the series Line Producer. A full schedule of broadcast dates for the ConFest Virtual Series can be found on CAATAʻs website at
Virtual ConFest Celebrates!


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