News: Theater Resources Unlimited Presents Live Town Hall, Barely Visible: Native American Theater Artists, on June 27th

Theater Resources Unlimited (TRU), a nonprofit organization and the leading network for developing theater professionals, has announced Barely Visible: Native American Theater Artists, a live town hall on June 27, 2024. The town hall will be co-hosted by actor-writer Shaun Taylor Corbett, a mixed-race artist of Amskapi Pikunni (Blackfeet), Scandinavian, and Black heritage and a member of the Kaa Nux Im mii Taaks (Blackfoot Crazy Dog Society); Danielle Jagelski (Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, Red Cliff Band of Ojibwe), a composer, music director and creative producer; John Scott Richardson (enrolled Haliwa-Saponi (Tutelo)/Tuscarora lineage), actor, public speaker and cultural educator; Julia Keefe (Nez Perce), internationally acclaimed actor, recording artist, educator, jazz singer and band leader for the Julia Keefe Indigenous Big Band. Barely Visible will be co-facilitated by Nicolette Blount (enrolled Chickasaw with Seminole ancestry), writer, composer, lyricist, performer, and producer at Take My Shot Productions, and TRU executive director Bob Ost.

TRU monthly conversations continue about issues of current cultural significance, with a particular focus on diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility. This month TRU considers the uncomfortable irony that theater's least visible representation of the American population is Native Americans. For theater (and all of the arts) to truly reflect the human experience and represent our populations fully, it is just common sense that we need to open the doors and let First American artists have their voice and tell their stories. A step forward was made last season when Larissa FastHorse (enrolled member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, Lakota Nation) saw her play The Thanksgiving Play finally make it to Broadway, although this may have been the first work of a Native American to be welcomed into the commercial theater since Lynn Riggs (part Cherokee) back in the 1930's; and it is definitely the first play by an indigenous woman. And though it did not find a Broadway audience to keep it running, it is now one of the most produced plays in the United States. Fine. Now how about all the other Native artists in our country? Where in our business are they being overlooked, and where are they being welcomed? And most importantly, can they tell their stories authentically, or is there pressure for them to conform to traditional theater norms?

Doors open at 6:30pm for networking and roundtable introductions of everyone in the room – come prepared with your best 20-second summary of who you are and what you need. The Open Forum will start at 7:00pm. The event is free for TRU members and not-for-profit theater companies and $15 for non-members. To register, visit


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