Native Voices at the Autry continues its vital role as the country's only equity theatre company dedicated exclusively to developing the work of Native American Playwrights with a free staged reading of THE DAY WE WERE BORN, a new play by Jaisey Bates (Long House Huron, Algonquin*) tonight, September 20, 2012, 7:30 pm, at the Wells Fargo Theater at The Autry National Center in Griffith Park.
Powerful and poignant, The Day We Were Born is the story of two Iñupiat boys born the same day and raised as brothers who are activated with the Alaskan National Guard for service in Iraq. A spirit woman guides the lost soul of an Iñupiat veteran through the boys' lives from childhood to war, seeking a way to bring them all together before it's too late.
The reading is followed by an audience "Talk-Back" with Bates and the director. The reading is part of Native Voices' signature FIRST LOOK SERIES: Plays in Progress, which brings playwrights together with professional directors, dramaturgs, and actors for a workshop and public presentation at the Autry, providing an important next step in the play's development.
Native Voices at the Autry, a constituent of Theatre Communications Group (TCG), is made possible in part by grants and support from Department of Cultural Affairs, City of Los Angeles; Los Angeles County Arts Commission; National Endowment for the Arts; Edison International; Nissan; San Manuel Band of Mission Indians; Wells Fargo; and Judith Jacobs Foundation.
JAISEY BATES (Long House Huron, Algonquin*) seeks to create stories that transcend cultural lines and speak at their heart to what it means to be human. With her multicultural, nomadic theater company, The Peoplehood, Jaisey writes and performs work that hopefully encourages us to remember how much we share in common under our 'social skins'. Her poetry, spoken word pieces, short one-acts and full-length plays celebrate diversity. Los Angeles and NYC performance venues for her words have included Native Voices at the Autry and the Art/Works, Eclectic, Lounge, Naked Angels, Open Fist, Performance Loft, Playwrights' Center Stage, Sky Lounge, Unknown and Victory theaters.
NATIVE VOICES AT THE AUTRY is the country's only Equity theatre company dedicated exclusively to producing new works by Native American Playwrights. The company has been hailed by critics as "a virtual who's who of American Indian theatre artists," "a hot bed for contemporary Native Theatre," "deeply compelling" and "a powerful and eloquent voice." Native Voices, which provides a supportive, collaborative setting for Native Theatre artists from across North America, was established as a resident company at The Autry National Center in 1999. It is widely respected in both the Native American and theatre communities for its breakthrough plays and diverse programming showcasing unique points of view within the more than 500 Native American nations in North America. Deeply committed to developing new works by beginning, emerging and established Native playwrights from across North America and seeing them fully realized, Native Voices has presented fully staged productions of 19 critically acclaimed new plays, including 14 world premieres, 8 Playwrights Retreats and 18 New Play Festivals, and more than 150 workshops and public staged readings of new plays. Native Voices is led by Founder/Producing Artistic Director Randy Reinholz (Choctaw*) and Founder/Producing Executive Director Jean Bruce Scott and maintains successful long-term relationships with New York's The Public Theater, Native American Public Telecommunications (NAPT), Washington's Kennedy Center, The National Museum of the American Indian and La Jolla Playhouse.
THE AUTRY NATIONAL CENTER is an intercultural history center dedicated to exploring and sharing the stories, experiences, and perceptions of the diverse peoples of the American West. Located in Griffith Park, the Autry's collection of over 500,000 pieces of art and artifacts, which includes the collection of the Southwest Museum of the American Indian, is one of the largest and most significant in the United States. The Autry Institute includes two research libraries: the Braun Research Library and the Autry Library. Exhibitions, public programs, K–12 educational services, and publications are designed to examine the contemporary human condition through the lens of the historical Western experience and explore critical issues in society.