July 18 & 19 at 8 p.m., July 20 at 4 p.m.
YO MISS!: Teaching Inside the Cultural Divide
a play with music
Created and performed by Judith Sloan
Running Time: Approx. 75 minutes.
Listen to excerpts of YO MISS!, Winner of Missouri Review National Audio Competition HERE.
Supported in part by grants from Art Angels and the Harold Grinspoon Foundation. Corporate Co-Sponsors:
Fusing the art of theatre, radio, and music, YO MISS! Teaching Inside the Cultural Divide is an eye- and ear-witness account of one artist navigating her art, her life, and the lives of her students. Actress, radio producer, Judith Sloan, known for her one woman performances and her collaboration with Warren Lehrer on the multimedia project Crossing the BLVD, spent 15 years teaching in schools and jails where she encountered and reported on immigration stories, cultural clashes, and generation gaps. After colliding with Hip Hop Culture and rapper Immortal Technique, Sloan remixes her own experiences with those of her students and transforms into a multitude of characters in this sometimes funny, sometimes sad, always truth-seeking show.
Through poetry, vivid character portrayals and music, she brings their tales to life along with her own stories revealing the ripple effects of the Holocaust on her family, as she and her students find resilience in the face of tragedy. In addition to her work as an educator, Judith Sloan is an award-winning character actress, oral historian, and radio producer.
YO MISS! Is a project of EarSay, in collaboration with Viper Records.
Dramaturgy: Morgan Jenness
Direction: Claire Lebowitz and Bob Berky
Music and sound developed and designed by Judith Sloan, in collaboration with the musicians and various engineers including: David Krakauer, MiWi La Lupa, Frank London, Taylor Rivelli, Adam MJ Hill and Red Ukachukwu, Immortal Technique. Contributing engineers, Touré “Southpaw” Harris, Ariel Bujorow, Taylor Rivelli, Josh Valleau.
WHAT THE PRESS HAS SAID:
“In YO MISS!, Judith Sloan’s art and teaching cross-pollinate. Performing with musical collaborators, she re-enacts and riffs on her experiences teaching teenagers from myriad worlds: refugee camps, struggling neighborhoods, prisons. It is a performance about performances, a story containing many stories.” — New York Times
“This is immersive, resonant theater. Communication, cultural destabilization, history and commonality, are dramatized, raising questions, offering response. [Sloan] is an audacious artist.” — Woman Around Town
About JUDITH SLOAN
Judith Sloan is an actor, audio artist, writer, radio producer, human rights activist, educator and poet whose work combines humor, pathos and a love of the absurd. For over twenty years, Sloan has been producing and presenting interdisciplinary works in audio and theater, portraying voices often ignored by the mass media. Her solo performances and plays include: Denial of the Fittest (nominated for best comedy performance at the Edinburgh International Fringe Festival), Responding to Chaos, A Tattle Tale: eyewitness in Mississippi, and Crossing the BLVD: strangers, neighbors, aliens in a new America, and her new work-in-progress YO MISS! Teaching Inside the Cultural Divide which is in development with director Bob Berky. Her commentaries, plays, poetry and documentaries have aired on National Public Radio, New York Public Radio, WBEZ Chicago, PRI, BBC, and listener sponsored stations throughout the U.S. Sloan has received awards for her audio mixes, radio documentaries and work with various musicians integrating storytelling, acting, sampling and multiple languages into symphonic pieces, live performance with actors and musicians, and radio. Sloan was commissioned to write the libretto for 1001 Voices: A Symphony for a New America, with music by Frank London and animations by Warren Lehrer, which premiered in April 2012 by the Queens Symphony Orchestra. Her multi-layered theater work has been produced in theatres and festivals throughout the U.S. and abroad including: LaMama E.T.C, The Public Theatre, The Theatre Workshop (Edinburgh, Scotland), The Smithsonian Institution, the Market Theatre (Johannesburg, SA), etc. She has been featured in the New York Times, the Washington Post, Theatre Week, The London Stage, San Francisco Chronicle, among others.
Sloan received a 2013 individual artist grant from Queens Council on the Arts to begin development on a new piece using a combination of music, sound and voice called, Anecdotal Evidence, and a 2013 New York State Council on the Arts Grant to begin developing a new work called City of Live Women and Girls with musicians Deep Singh and Frank London. Sloan was 2011 Finalist, in Missouri Review National Audio Competition in self-recorded documentary category for “Tongues Twisting”; 2009 First Place Missouri Review National Audio Competition and First Runner-Up; 2008 First Place, Missouri Review National Audio Competition; 2005 BAXten Artist In Progress Award with Carl Hancock Rux in the Artist category; 2005 Short Doc Competition from the Third Coast International Audio Festival; 2005 Special Merit Award from the National Federation of Community Broadcasters; 2004 Best of Indie Culture Award for her mix of Globalization on the Crossing the BLVD CD; Along with Warren Lehrer she co-wrote the Crossing the BLVD book (W.W. Norton) and received numerous awards for the entire multi-media project including the 2004 Brendan Gill Prize from the Municipal Art Society of New York, the 2003 Innovative Use of Archives Award, a Media That Matters Award; grants from Ford Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, Franklin Furnace, New York State Council on the Arts among others. Collaborators in theatre, audio, books, music and exhibitions include: Frank London, Joanna Settle, Laura Sydell, Terry Park, Robert Winn, Scott Johnson, Gogol Bordello, David Krakauer, Elise Knudson, Miwi LaLupa, Deep Singh, Chesney Snow, Bob Berky, among others.
Her articles and editorials have been published in the New York Times, the Forward, Movement Research Journal and Altnet.com. Sloan has produced and co-produced several documentaries (video and audio) including: Reclaiming A Past about her work with older European Jews and Holocaust survivors; a documentary featuring excerpts from the play A Tattle Tale: eyewitness in Mississippi was broadcast on National Public Radio. She is a member of the faculty at Gallatin School of Individualized Study at NYU and a member of the Dramatist Guild and the Network of Ensemble Theatres. Sloan has been a guest performer and lecturer at Dartmouth College, Columbia University, Yale University, SUNY Purchase, University of Hawaii, University of Massachusetts, among others. She is the director of Cross-Cultural Dialogue Through the Arts, an arts mentorship and training program creating collaborations between disparate communities that grew out of EarSay’s Crossing the BLVD project. Sloan has been working with immigrant and refugee teenagers, many who come from war-zones, since 1998. Her work at the International High School at LaGuardia Community College in Queens garnered her the Partnership in Education Award in June 2009. In September 2009, Sloan started a new EarSay initiative Transforming Trauma Into Art, to provide music, theatre, and writing workshops to teenagers from war-zones and immigrant youth who have been displaced by natural disasters and poverty. Proceeds from the YO MISS project go to support the EarSay Youth Programs.
Yo Miss! is a project of EarSay, produced by Judith Sloan, developed in partnership with Viper Records and Morgan Jenness from Abrams Artist Agency. A portion of the proceeds from the Yo Miss! theatre project go to support EarSay’s Youth Education project for immigrant and refugee teenagers. Development of Yo Miss! with support from the Queens Council on the Arts, LaGuardia Performing Arts Center, and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. Workshop presentations of Yo Miss were developed in 2009 and 2010 at the Danny Simmons Corridor Gallery, Nuyorican Poet’s Café, and LaGuardia Performing Arts Center. Special Thanks to Michael Dinwiddie for support with the work-in-progress, and Joanna Settle for directing the revised script.