Photo Flash: Public Works Dallas Presents Groundbreaking Production of THE TEMPEST

Dallas Theater Center (DTC), in collaboration with Southern Methodist University's Meadows School of the Arts and Ignite/Arts Dallas, and in affiliation with New York City-based The Public Theater's Public Works and AT&T Performing Arts Center, announced details for Public Works Dallas, a groundbreaking community engagement and participatory theater project designed to deliberately blur the line between professional artists and Dallas community members.

Five Dallas community organizations are participating in Public Works Dallas, including Jubilee Park and Community Center, Vickery Meadows Learning Center (VMLC), Literacy Instruction for Texas (LIFT), Bachman Lake Together and City of Dallas Park and Recreation. All will participate in workshops throughout the year culminating in auditions for roles in the Public Works Dallas participatory musical theater production of Shakespeare's The Tempest in March 2017, directed by DTC Artistic Director Kevin Moriarty at the Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre in the Dallas Arts District.

The Tempest will feature 200 cast members, only five of whom will be professional actors, including members of DTC's Hal and Diane Brierley Resident Acting Company. The remaining actors will be residents of Dallas, 100 selected from the five community organizations and 95 from select community cameo groups.

Public Works Dallas is affiliated with Public Works, an ongoing initiative of The Public Theater that seeks to engage the people of New York by making them creators and not just spectators. Public Works presented The Tempest in 2013 in New York, directed by Public Works Director Lear deBessonet, who was awarded the SMU Meadows Prize in 2015 to bring the program to Dallas, and will be collaborating on the Public Works Dallas project. She notes that participants of Public Works gain not only personal satisfaction but a deeper sense of connection to the city and its people.

DTC will work with community members at the five partner organizations to participate in workshops and join in the creation of participatory theater. Sessions will be led by DTC's Public Works Dallas Fellow Leah Harris, at Jubilee Park and Community Center; actress and Texas Christian University adjunct instructor Lydia Mackay at VMLC; SMU Meadows Artist-in-Residence and DTC Playwright in Residence Will Power at LIFT; actor and Cara Mía Theatre company member Ivan Jasso at Bachman Lake Together; and DTC Brierley Resident Acting Company member and Resident Artist, Hassan El-Amin at City of Dallas Park and Recreation. El-Amin will depart in July, and an additional Public Artist for City of Dallas Park and Recreation will be announced at a later date.

DTC is a resident company of the AT&T Performing Arts Center, which is also affiliated with Public Works Dallas.

Public Works Dallas is one of two pilot sites to be affiliated with Public Works, along with Seattle Repertory Theatre. Public Works Dallas is the ultimate community engagement initiative, says DTC Director of Public Works Dallas Dayron J. Miles. "The main goal is to engage our community with a joyful artistic experience that enriches lives and creates a more connected Dallas. Public Works Dallas and Public Works Seattle are the first national Public Works partners and we are thrilled to join our friends at The Public Theater in this necessary work that we hope will spread to other regional theaters across the country."

The 90-minute production of The Tempest will be held March 3-5, 2017 at the Wyly Theatre located at 2400 Flora St., Dallas, TX 75201. The production will be free and open to the public. Ticket and full cast information will be announced at a later date.

Public Works Dallas is the recipient of a 2015 TACA Bowden & Embrey Family Foundation Artist Residency Fund grant and a City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs Cultural Vitality Program grant.

Photo Credit: Karen Almond

Photo Flash: Public Works Dallas Presents Groundbreaking Production of THE TEMPEST
Cast members of The Tempest

Photo Flash: Public Works Dallas Presents Groundbreaking Production of THE TEMPEST
Cast members of The Tempest

Photo Flash: Public Works Dallas Presents Groundbreaking Production of THE TEMPEST
Cast members of The Tempest

Photo Flash: Public Works Dallas Presents Groundbreaking Production of THE TEMPEST
Liz Mikel and cast members of The Tempest

Photo Flash: Public Works Dallas Presents Groundbreaking Production of THE TEMPEST
Liz Mikel and cast members of The Tempest


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