Philly Education Stories
Using story circles to document the experiences and beliefs of educators, students and parents, Anissa and her collaborators in the Teacher Action Group are co-creating a piece of original theater that shares their visions for educational transformation in Philadelphia. This project uses storytelling and theater as a cultural strategy to cultivate intergenerational solidarity, heal tensions within communities, and amplify participants’ calls for systemic change in education.
It’s Time We Pay Them a Visit
The piece is an allegory/practice space for getting unstuck and taking action to stop the white supremacist capitalist patriarchy (bell hooks, et.al.). It sits atop our dying world, and explores what it will take for us to hear our instincts and follow our impulses to take a collective next step to confront and dismantle the systems that are destroying us. Also, it’s a comedy.
HIDDEN HISTORIES OF WHITENESS
Part performance. Part interactive workshop.
Using historical moments, real and imagined, as jumping-off points, this piece shines a light on (some of the) unexamined racialized violence of white supremacy in order to confront, claim/reject, and transform the inheritance of whiteness.
Anissa has worked as a theater director and teacher in Philadelphia’s public schools for the past 14 years. Her approach is anchored in the belief that education must ignite something within her students, help them put language to their lived experiences and dreams of a changed world, connect them to their most human selves, and create an open space for self-growth, imagination and full expression. Creating theater with her students -- both originally-devised ensemble work and scripted productions -- in the under-funded public schools, Anissa has managed to make magic through her deep commitment to her students, even with very few resources.