Speaker Bios


Peter BrosiusPeter C. Brosius joined The Children's Theatre Company (CTC) as its third artistic director in 1997. During Mr. Brosius' tenure, CTC was the winner of the 2003 Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre, the first time ever a youth theater was bestowed this honor. In addition, CTC's production of A Year with Frog and Toad, which completed a run at the Cort Theater on Broadway in June 2003, was nominated for three Tony Awards. In 1998, under Brosius' leadership, CTC established THRESHOLD, a new play laboratory that has allowed CTC to work with some of the leading playwrights in American to create world premiere productions: Nilo Cruz, Jeffrey Hatcher, Kia Corthrun, Naomi Iizuka, to name a few. CTC has also been involved with international collaborations with theater artists from Sweden, Britain, and the Netherlands. Along with new play development, Brosius has helped launch new education programs, one of which is the acclaimed Neighborhood Bridges program that is being used as a national model. Past directing credits at CTC include: Anon(ymous), The Lost Boys of Sudan, The Monkey King, Hansel & Gretel, Amber Waves, The Snow Queen, Dragonwings, Mississippi Panorama, A Village Fable, Whale, Afternoon of the Elves, and Boundless Grace. Previously he was the artistic director of the Improvisational Theatre Project of the Mark Taper Forum, where he commissioned and directed numerous world premieres by authors such as Lisa Loomer, Erin Cressida Wilson, Peter Mattei, as well as the U.S. premieres of One Thousand Cranes by Colin Thomas, Stamping Shouting and Singing Home by Lisa Evans, and Robinson and Crusoe by Teatro Dell Angollo. At the Taper, he also directed numerous productions for the Taper's New Work Festival and for its mainstage. In addition, he has directed at theatres across the country: South Coast Repertory, Arizona Theatre Company, South Street Theatre on Theatre Row, Pan Asian Repertory. He also spent many years as director-in-residence at The Sundance Playwrights Laboratory. He is the recipient of numerous awards including Theatre Communications Group's Alan Schneider Director's Award and honors from the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award and Dramalogue. He holds a B.A. from Hampshire College and an M.F.A from New York University. Brosius is married to playwright Rosanna Staffa and is the father of fourteen-year-old daughter Daria and nine-year-old son Gabriel.

Kwame Kwei-Armah Kwame Kwei-Armah is a British actor, director and playwright. Kwame was writer-in-residence at the Bristol Old Vic from 1999-2001, where he wrote three plays: A Bitter Herb (winner, Peggy Ramsey award), Blues Brother Soul Sister, and Big Nose.   He is currently writer-in-residence for BBC Radio Drama, an associate artist at the National Theatre of Great Britain and at CENTERSTAGE, Baltimore. His triptych of plays set in the habits of the African-Caribbean community, Elmina’s Kitchen, Fix up, and Statement of Regret, premiered at the National Theatre between 2003 and 2007, with Elmina’s Kitchen transferring to London’s West End (the first play by an African-Caribbean playwright to have had that honor) and to Baltimore and Chicago. Among others, he has won the Evening Standard Charles Wintor Award for Most Promising Playwright, the Screen Nation Award for Favourite TV Actor, the 100 Black Men of Britain Public Figure Award, and the RECON Community Leadership Award, 2007.  Kwame has been nominated for a Lawrence Oliver Award and a BAFTA.  He recently received an Honorary Doctorate from The Open University. At Baltimore’s CENTERSTAGE, he directed MacArthur Fellowship recipient Naomi Wallace’s Things of Dry Hours in 2007. He directed Eisa Davis’s ten-minute play, Dave Chappelle was right for the 24-hour plays on Broadway, and has recently directed his own play, Let There Be Love at the Tricycle Theatre, London. Kwame has presented for BBC television’s Newsnight review, has been a panelist on Question Time, and is often heard on BBC Radio 4.  He was a regular columnist for The Guardian from 2005-2006, and has written articles for The Independent, The Telegraph, The Evening Standard, The New Statesmen and The Observer.  He has been the Good Will Ambassador for Trade for Christian Aid since 2003. As an actor, Kwame played Finley Newton in the BBC’s Casualty, 1999-2004, and has recently appeared in the television series Hotel Babylon, ITV’s LEWIS and the film Fade to Black.

Dr. Alexander MacDonaldDr. Alexander ( Sandy ) MacDonald A Montana native, Dr. MacDonald earned his B.S. in Mathematics and Physics from Montana State, and both his M.S. and Ph.D. in Meteorology from the University of Utah . He started his career with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in 1973, a cutting-edge research agency and an international leader on scientific and environmental matters. Described as a visionary, Dr. MacDonald has had numerous leadership roles at NOAA making many contributions to the science of weather and climate. His work in the White House with Vice President Al Gore to start the GLOBE project, an educational web-based program involving classrooms worldwide in atmospheric sciences, earned him the Distinguished Presidential Rank Award in 1998. As an inventor, Dr. MacDonald developed Science On a Sphere®, a six foot diameter globe that uses high-speed computers and strategically placed projectors, displaying animated images of atmospheric storms, climate change, and ocean temperature, which is used as an educational tool in science centers, universities, and museums across the country. Dr. MacDonald is presently serving a dual role as the Deputy Assistant Administrator for NOAA Research and the Director of the Earth System Research Laboratory. An avid arts fan, he has made presentations for EcoArts and the Colorado Music Festival on climate change, and is a self-described “piano player” with a particular love of American musicals.

Luke SlatteryLuke Slattery is a junior at Colorado Academy and is now in his second year as a Curious New Voices playwright.  During his time with CNV he has written four plays. Solace in the Heat was presented in collaboration with EcoArts and performed in Boulder on a bus.  A Little Pool of Compassion was performed at The Denver Public Library.  The Shuddering Plains of a Beautiful, Beautiful Country was read last July during the CNV summer festival at Curious.  Icarus was written for Curious’ Gender & Geography Plays as a companion piece to Heather Raffo’s 9 Parts of Desire. So far, all of his plays are about movements of thought and change. Perhaps because there is so much more to learn and experience from these world-changing events. Luke is not sure where his writing will take him, but hopes it plays an incredibly significant role in whatever he chooses to do.  

Paula VogelPaula Vogel's play, How I Learned to Drive received the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for Drama,

the Lortel, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle and New York Drama Critics Awards for Best Play, as well as winning her second OBIE. It has been produced all over the world. Other plays include The Long Christmas Ride Home, The Mineola Twins, The Baltimore Waltz, Hot'N'Throbbing, Desdemona, And Baby Makes Seven, and The Oldest Profession. In 2004-5, she was the playwright in residence at The Signature Theatre in New York, which produced three of her works. Her new play, A Civil War Christmas is in development by Long Wharf Theatre and the Old Globe Theatre for 2008-9. TCG has published three books of her work, The Mammary Plays, The Baltimore Waltz and Other Plays and The Long Christmas Ride Home. Ms. Vogel won the 2004 Award for Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Obie for Best Play in 1992, the Rhode Island Pell Award in the Arts, the Hull-Warriner Award, the Laura Pels Award, the Pew Charitable Trust Senior Award, a Guggenheim, an AT&T New Plays Award, the Fund for New American Plays, the Rockefeller Foundation's Bellagio Center Fellowhip, several National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, the McKnight Fellowship, the Bunting Fellowship, and the Governor's Award for the Arts. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Science. In addition to stage work, Ms. Vogel has written several screenplays (On Common Ground for Showtime, an adaptation of How I Learned to Drive for LauraZiskind Productions and HBO, and others.) Paula is the Adele Kellenberg Seaver Professor of Creative Writing at Brown University, where she has taught playwriting and directed the MFA Playwriting program since 1984.

Bailey Williams
Bailey Williams wrote her first play at age six.  After an eleven-year hiatus and a three-week intensive at Curious Theatre Company's New Voices, writing is all she wants to do. She has written three plays with Curious.  The 10 Billionth Baby was the second, written in collaboration with EcoArts and inspired by her environmental science class.  Her aim is to write love plays, lonely plays, silly plays, but most importantly, stirring plays. David Mamet once wrote that the only purpose of theatre is to entertain. Bailey hopes that the theatre proves him hopelessly wrong. 

Kinney Zalesne Kinney Zalesne is the co-author of microtrends: the small forces behind tomorrow’s big changes. As such, she is an authority on the dozens of emerging communities whose tastes and lifestyles are shaping our future. She also has deep experience with social entrepreneurship, the application of entrepreneurial principals to solve social problems and effect social change. She worked on President Clinton’s 1996 re-election campaign and has also assisted with the strategy for Hillary Clinton. She was a White House Fellow in 95-96, serving in Al Gore’s office, where she focused on domestic policy and education technology. She also served as Counsel to Attorney General Janet Reno from 96-99. She left the Justice Department to become deputy director of College Summit, a nonprofit that helps low-income school districts send more kids to college. She has also been the executive vice-president of Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life.

If you have any questions about speakers, please contact the National Conference Department; 212-609-5900 x 270.

Back to Top