FUTURE IDS AT ALCATRAZ On Display At New Industries Building on Alcatraz Island

By: Jul. 17, 2019
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Future IDs at Alcatraz, a yearlong project, exhibition, and series of monthly public programs on view in the New Industries Building on Alcatraz Island until October 2019, brings attention to criminal justice reform efforts and second chances. The exhibition encourages the viewer to reevaluate ideas about rehabilitation, reentry, and reintegration, which features ID inspired artwork created by individuals who have a conviction history as they conceive and develop a vision for a future self.

Presented in partnership with the Art in the Parks program of the National Park Service, Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, and Headlands Center for the Arts, Future IDs at Alcatraz engages Alcatraz's layered history as an iconic federal prison, birthplace of the Native American Red Power Movement, national park, and international Site of Conscience. Attracting 1.7 million annual visitors, Alcatraz is uniquely positioned to initiate a broad dialogue about destigmatizing those with conviction histories. The exhibit is lead by artist Gregory Sale.

In stark contrast to prison-issued IDs, the Future IDs artworks represent individual stories of transformation. The Future IDs at Alcatraz Exhibit will weave the personal narratives of the exhibition's artists with the many stories of human resilience encapsulated on Alcatraz over time.

The Actors' Gang Prison Project (TAGPP) participates in Future IDs at Alcatraz Release Party on Saturday, July 20th with a workshop led by formerly incarcerated Actors' Gang Alumni. The Release Party event features a variety of first-hand accounts by people who have felt the direct impact of incarceration and are now using their experiences to improve their own lives and the lives of others. These programs will also consider the far-reaching effects of incarceration on families and communities.

Building on their success with artistic programming formerly incarcerated participants of TAGPP are now leading those same programs on the outside and will share their personal stories with the community. In addition to the TAGPP Workshop, CDCR leadership and returning citizens will discuss the value of rehabilitation through the arts in prison.


"So much at Alcatraz is about memory or nostalgia for the past. We want to springboard from this nostalgic history into the present and the future." - Future IDs lead artist Gregory Sale

  • Alcatraz Then and Now - Mines the layered history of Alcatraz as an iconic penitentiary and as a place of self-determination and identity with the birth of the Native American Red Power Movement to consider the present
  • The Actors' Gang Prison Project Devised Workshop/Performance - A first-hand look at the highly physical and emotional style of improvised theatre, led by program alumni
  • Parents/Children: the Family's in Prison too - Watani Stiner/Larry Stiner and Sabrina Reid/Kayla Fontanilla share their life stories, co-hosted by the William James Association and Alcatraz Formerly Incarcerated Speaker Series
  • Stand by Your Art - Informal conversations with Future IDs artists and family representatives
  • Reintegration and the Arts - Returning citizens leading arts programs on the "outside" discuss with California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation leadership the value of art programming "inside"

The Actors' Gang Prison Project was launched in 2006, as a program that uses theater as a tool to foster self-esteem, tolerance and nonviolent expression, while preparing students for life beyond bars. To date, The Actors' Gang Prison Project has directly served over a thousand incarcerated men, women and juveniles in twelve California State Prisons, two Reentry Facilities and six juvenile facilities in Los Angeles County.

Building on the success of employing formerly incarcerated individuals as teaching artists, The Actors' Gang Prison Project has created the Alumni Advocacy Project - a network of individuals who completed the program in prison or reentry. This new project helped establish a platform for on-going classes and trainings for the alumni to continue their practice and support one another as mentors, whether they want to be teaching artists or not. Currently, the Alumni Advocacy Project is made up of 20 men and women.

The Actors' Gang launched their Reentry Program in 2016, which was created in partnership with Walden House/HealthRIGHT 360, which gave qualified TAG Prison Project participants a residence to be released to where they can continue training as they transition from prison to their community.

The Actors' Gang Reentry Program at Walden House employs Alumni Teaching Artists, previously incarcerated participants who were involved in the Actors' Gang Prison Project while in custody. Upon their release, while on Parole, they have continued their involvement with the program as Teaching Artists.

Currently, thirteen men and women are employed by The Actors' Gang Prison Project due to their acumen, dedication, and desire to be Alumni Teaching Artists and Advocates. The Walden House reentry program serves as a platform and training ground for Alumni Teaching Artists to become Lead Teaching Artists. Walden House provides an ideal environment for the alumni to continue to hone their skills as artists, elevate their teaching and give back to their community.

ABOUT THE Actors' Gang
The Actors' Gang was founded in 1981 by a group of young actors looking to build a theater that would present relevant and vibrantly entertaining plays. Over the past 38 years, The Actors' Gang has performed for audiences in Los Angeles and throughout the world, on five continents and in 40 U.S. States. Our groundbreaking Prison Project is currently in twelve California prisons, serving incarcerated women, men and children with rehabilitation programs that significantly reduce the recidivism rate. Each year, thousands of children in Los Angeles public schools discover confidence and creativity with our Education Department through in-school immersion and after-school programs and by participating in classes that encourage acceptance, respect and team building in a fun and impactful way.

The theater company has presented the work of innovative theater artists including Georges Bigot, Simon Abkarian, Charles Mee, David Schweizer, Bill Rauch and the Cornerstone Theatre Company, Tracy Young, Roger Guenver Smith, Eric Bogosian, Oskar Eustis, Danny Hoch, Beth Milles, Brian Kulick, Stefan Haves, Namaste Theater Company, Culture Clash, Jason Reed, Michael Schlitt and Tenacious D.

The Actors' Gang ensemble has included accomplished actors such as Jack Black, Lee Arenberg, John Cusack, John C. Reilly, Brent Hinkley, Helen Hunt, Kate Walsh, Kyle Gass, Fisher Stevens, Ned Bellamy, Jeremy Piven, Ebbe Roe Smith, Kate Mulligan, and Tim Robbins. The theater company has presented the work of innovative theater artists including Georges Bigot, Simon Abkarian, Charles Mee, Culture Clash, Bill Rauch and The Cornerstone Theatre Company, Tracy Young, Namaste Theater Company, Roger Guenver Smith, Eric Bogosian, Oskar Eustis, Danny Hoch, Beth Milles, David Schweitzer, Brian Kulick, Stefan Haves, Jason Reed, Michael Schlitt and Tenacious D.

Guest artists that have appeared on The Actors' Gang stage include: Jackson Browne, Sarah Silverman, Ben Gibbard, John Doe, Tom Morello, Jenny Lewis, Wayne Kramer, Paul Provenza, Zooey Deschanel, Serj Tankian, David Crosby, Pink, Felicity Huffman, Jill Sobule, William H. Macy, Phillip Baker Hall, Jeanne Tripplehorn, T.C. Boyle. and the late, beloved, Gore Vidal.

Recent touring productions include The New Colossus, Harlequino: On to Freedom, A Midsummer Night's Dream, George Orwell's 1984, The Exonerated, Tartuffe, Embedded, The Trial of the Catonsville Nine and The Guys. Over the last thirty years The Actors' Gang has toured the U.S. in forty-five states and on five continents, performing across the world from London to Milan, Bucharest, Athens, Madrid, Barcelona, Bogota, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Melbourne, Buenos Aires and recently, to Santiago and Concepcion, in Chile.