University of California, Riverside | Casting in Color Symposium | Riverside, CA

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Popular discourses such as #OscarsSoWhite and burgeoning scholarship on American actors of color have highlighted racial disparities in casting, but rarely do these discussions meet in spaces accessible to students. A symposium at UCR, “Casting in Color: Race on Stage and Screen” brings together scholars, professional artists, and students to talk about the dilemmas, theories, and strategies for casting people of color across theatre, film, and television. Casting is both an artistic issue and a labor issue. African Americans, Asian Americans, Latinx/o/as, Native Americans, and mixed-race people are dramatically underrepresented on stage and screen, and they often play secondary characters. Although multiracial casts in traditionally white plays create new opportunities and perspectives, they also paradoxically promote the idea that race no longer matters. “Casting in Color” provokes an exciting, educational conversation on how racial politics shape casting and how audiences subsequently interpret casting, all of which has a profound impact on the materiality of race and racial hierarchy.


Toward Theories of Casting

February 28, 2019

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USC American Studies & Ethnicity Gradate Student Symposium | Los Angeles, CA

I was delighted to participate in the USC American Studies & Ethnicity Gradate Student Symposium on bodies and power with my wonderful colleague Juan De Lara, who shared his brilliant and chilling new project on political economy, surveillance, and big data. Thanks to all the graduate student organizers who made this happen! Special thanks to all the people who helped me enact scenes from my play Seamless: ASE graduate students Teraya Paramehta, Aurélien Davennes, Quinn Anex-Ries, and to Dylan Locke, founder of the Modern Minority Theatre Company.


American Studies Association | Atlanta, GA

Panel: Creating States of Emergence: Scholar-Artists and the Life-Giving Capacities of the Arts

Panel Members: Traise Yamamoto, Imani Uzuri, Omi Jones, Rebecca Peabody (Chair)

Anthony Sparks was not able to attend, but we were inspired by his brilliant remarks.

American Anthropological Association | San Jose, CA

Wakanda University: A Spa for Your Tired Genre Conventions. Guerilla pop-up street theater performance of scenes from “Seamless,” by Dorinne Kondo

Play Reading and Discussion of Genre, Embodiment and Serious Fun as Strategies of Resilience and Reparative Creativity 

Special thanks to my intrepid colleagues and fellow actors/partners-in-crime: Christen Smith, Stephanie Takaragawa, Mei Zhan and Elizabeth Chin, organizer of Wakanda University