Lynn Ahrens, Stephen Flaherty, Sergio Trujillo & More Will Take Part in EPIC

Other speakers will include David Henry Hwang, Misty Copeland, Paul Tazewell and more.

By: Nov. 30, 2021
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Lynn Ahrens, Stephen Flaherty, Sergio Trujillo & More Will Take Part in EPIC

The Entertainment and Performing Arts Industry Conference (EPIC) is thrilled to announce some of Broadway's best to join a multi-national and highly regarded group of entertainment industry leaders to participate in the first-ever, 24-hour global online event for everyone working in, aspiring to work in, or wishing to explore the arts and entertainment sector.

A diverse and dynamic group of more than 100 speakers and panelists are coming to EPIC to share their stories and perspectives in 50 unique sessions, representing four pillars: CREATE, PERFORM, DESIGN, and PRODUCE. Never before have these leaders come together on one platform and in one conference for interviews, panels, and discussions about the evolution of the arts and entertainment industry.

The CREATE Pillar features directors, choreographers, writers, composers, and creative visionaries. Among them: David Henry Hwang (playwright, librettist, and screenwriter, Tony Award® winner and three-time nominee, three-time OBIE award winner, and two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist) in an exclusive interview about the Culture Clash represented in his body of work. Gilles Ste-Croix (Co-founder of Cirque du Soleil) will shed light on his life leading up to and since he revolutionized the circus as co-creator of Cirque du Soleil. Sergio Trujillo (Tony Award winner for Ain't Too Proud and Olivier Award winner for Memphis) will share his process of using movement to further storytelling and reflect character and culture. And the multi award-winning writing team of Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty (Ragtime, Once On This Island, Anastasia) will discuss their collaborative writing process, how they reflect different cultures in their work, and how they've adapted their work to continue to captivate and speak to audiences across the globe.

They are joined by a group of international directors, choreographers, and writers from around the world, including On Keng Sen (award-winning Singaporean director, former director of the Singapore International Festival of Arts), A.R. Rahman (Oscar®-winning Indian composer of Slumdog Millionaire), Guiliano Peparini(Italian director and choreographer), Leslie Ishii, Liam Steel, Kimberley Rampersad, Lulu Helbaek, Priti Gandhi, Matthew Ozawa, Louisa Muller, and more.

The PERFORM Pillar is led by Misty Copeland (Principal Dancer with American Ballet Theatre), who will discuss her career in the professional ballet world and debuting on Broadway in On the Town in an exclusive one-on-one interview. Broadway actors Patti Murin (Broadway's Frozen, Lysistrata Jones, Xanadu), Rodney Hicks (Come From Away, The Scottsboro Boys, RENT), and Bret Shuford (Wicked, Paramour, The Little Mermaid) will take part in a panel discussion on mental health for performing arts professionals. The PERFORM Pillar also feature actors, dancers, circus performers, physical therapists, and casting agents from around the world, including: Tara Rubin, Isaac Hernández, Shannan Calcutt, Boris Verkhovsky, Lorenzo Pisoni, Pavel Kotov, Niki Winterson, Cha Ramos, Mahsa Ahmadi, and Dayna Grant.

The DESIGN Pillar features an array of award-winning designers from every discipline discussing their work and collaboration throughout the industry. Panelists include: six-time Tony Award-winning lighting designer Natasha Katz (Aladdin, An American In Paris, Follies, Aida), Tony Award-winning costume designer for Hamilton Paul Tazewell, Tony Award-winning sound designer Jessica Paz (Hadestown, Bandstand, Dear Evan Hansen), and multi award winner, visionary production and puppet designer Michael Curry ('96 & '02 Olympics, The Lion King, Frozen), along with makeup designer Joe Dulude II (Wicked, Beetlejuice, SpongeBob...), wig and hair designer Charles LaPointe (The Cher Show, Ain't Too Proud, Beetlejuice), special effects designer Jeremy Chernick (Angels In America, American Psycho, The Play That Goes Wrong), and others from around the world, including: Tamás Vaspöri, Mehmet Unal, Omar Serna, Dawn Chiang, Gabriel Chan, Chris Moylan, YouJam, TAIT Automation, and more.

The PRODUCE Pillar features producers, stage managers, company managers, production and event leaders, as well as press and marketing professionals. The engaging sessions include insightful discussions with: two-time Tony Award-winning Broadway producer Ken Davenport (Once On This Island, Kinky Boots); co-founder of the premiere press and marketing agency Boneau/Bryan-Brown, Chris Boneau; Broadway stage managers Narda E. Alcorn (Choir Boy, The Lion King) and Richard Hester (Jersey Boys); and Broadway Company Managers Susan Sampliner (Wicked and co-founder of the Broadway Green Alliance), Kim Shaw (The Lion King, Diana), and Daniel Hoyos (Mean Girls, Finding Neverland). Joining them are: Scott Givens, large-scale event producer and president of FiveCurrents; Joyce Arbucias, Creative Producer from The Imagination House; Gareth Hulance, global leader in content creation for theme parks and cruise ships (Disney, Carnival, Princess, Busch Gardens, Dubai Parks); Jorge Tapia Briggs, Christian Bjerrum, Peter Maccoy, Marahscalh Stanton, and more.

More details, including a full list of the more than 100 panelists, available at