Daniel Banks, Ph.D., is a director, deviser, and dance dramaturg. He has directed, led workshops, and/or instigated projects in 39 states and 23 countries at such venues as the Belarussian National Drama Theatre, the NYC and DC Hip Hop Theatre Festivals, The Market Theater Lab (South Africa), McCarter Theatre Center, National Theatre of Uganda, the Oval House and Theatro Technis (U.K.), PlayMakers Rep, Playhouse Square, and The Public Theater. Read Daniel's full bio HERE
Daniel Banks, Ph.D.
Co-Founder and Co-Curator
Troy Lambert is an artist-educator and blerd. He is a Supplemental Instructor and Learning Facilitator in the SEEK Department at CUNY’s John Jay College of Criminal Justice and completed two years as an Adjunct Thesis Writing Advisor in the M.A. Applied Theater Program at CUNY’s School of Professional Studies. Troy conducts, coordinates, and designs research reports for city, state, and federal agencies, and CBO/NGO, leading to increased funding, legislation, and culturally competent services for marginalized and underserved communities across New York state. His paintings have appeared in independent feature films including Rodney Evans’ Brother to Brother and The Happy Sad. He is currently working on a graphic novel following several generations of nomadic Black space pirates. Troy earned a B.F.A., Carnegie Mellon University; M.F.A., Yale University; and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture as a Camille Hanks-Cosby Fellow. Most recently, he is the lead illustrator of The Queen's English: The LGBTQIA+ Dictionary of Lingo and Colloquial Phrases by author Chloe Davis.
Sarita Ocón is an actor, producing artist, and activist. Theatrical credits include performances with American Conservatory Theater, Arizona Theatre Company, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, BRAVA Theater Center, California Shakespeare Theater, Gala Hispanic Theatre, Huntington Theatre Company, Los Angeles Theatre Center, PlayMakers Repertory, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Round House Theatre, San Francisco Playhouse, ShadowLight Productions, South Coast Repertory, Teatro Visión, TheatreWorks Silicon Valley, among others.
Awards: Theatre Communications Group Fox Foundation Resident Actor Fellowship, Akonadi Foundation Beloved Community Award, Center for Cultural Innovation Investing in Artists Award, California Arts Council Local Impact Award, the RHE Charitable Foundation Artistic Fellowship. Ocón received her B.A. from Stanford University, and is an Associate Artist with Oakland Theater Project, a company member of HERO Theatre, and an inaugural member of the Cal Shakes Artist Circle (2021-2023).
Seema Sueko grew up in Honolulu with a Pakistani father and a third generation Kona-Japanese-American mother. She received her Master’s Degree in International Relations from University of Chicago. Between 2004 and 2020, Seema served as Deputy Artistic Director of Arena Stage in Washington, D.C., Associate Artistic Director of The Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena, CA, and Co-Founder and Executive Artistic Director at Mo`olelo Performing Arts Company in San Diego. Currently, she is studying Solidarity Economy and exploring ways to make theater that maximize social profit. She received the Theatre Communications Group’s Alan Schneider Director Award in 2022 and balances work as a freelance theater artist and consultant with caregiving for her parents. She is a Co-Curator with DNAWORKS as well as an “Immortal” with Kaimera Productions. Currently, she is adapting the novel Song of the Exile by Hawaiian writer Kiana Davenport into a play with jazz music, and coming up, she is directing the world premiere of Something Moving: A Meditation on Maynard by Pearl Cleage at Ford’s Theatre in D.C. Seema volunteers as board president of Stage Directors and Choreographers Foundation (SDCF) and as a member of the executive board of the union, SDC. She believes that in addition to having one’s basic needs met, art, exercise, and love are daily essentials. More information about Seema’s work can be found at www.seemasueko.com. She is represented by Max Grossman at A3 Artists Agency.
Andrés Franco is a nonprofit executive and orchestral conductor. He is the first Executive Director of DNAWORKS, an organization dedicated to dialogue and healing through the arts. Andrés currently serves on the Exposure Advisory Committee of the Pittsburgh Foundation and the WQED Community Advisory Board. A frequent guest conductor in the United States, Europe, and South America, Andrés has appeared with the symphonies of Dallas, Detroit, Fort Worth, Houston, Indianapolis, Omaha, and St. Louis; worldwide, he has conducted the Orquesta Sinfónica de Castilla y León, Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Perú, Bogotá Philharmonic, Medellín Philharmonic, and EAFIT Symphony Orchestra. He has also appeared at the Cabrillo, Grant Park, OK Mozart, Oregon Bach, Round Top, and Texas Music festivals. Andrés formerly served as Resident Conductor of the Pittsburgh Symphony, Music Director of the Signature Symphony, and Executive Director of City of Asylum and Caminos del Inka. A native of Medellín, Colombia, he now resides in Pittsburgh with his wife, Victoria Luperi, Associate Principal Clarinet and Principal E-flat with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.
Originally from Manchester, England, Cath Brittan was a producer for the Vienna Festival for many years and has worked as a production manager and producer in venues throughout the world including English National Opera, London; The Bolshoi, Moscow; Teatro Real, Madrid; The National Theater of Finland, Opera de Comique, Paris; Grand Théâtre de Genève, Geneva, De Singel, Antwerp and Festival Aix-en-Provence, Recent and up-coming productions include Aci, Galatea e Polifemo (dir. Christopher Alden); Messiaen's Des Canyons aux étoiles (w Deborah O'Grady) Glass Handel (2018 & 2019, BBC Proms 2022); Comet Poppea (dir. Yuval Sharon); Bandwagon (New York Philharmonic); Amadigi de Gaula (dir. Louisa Muller); 2018/19 and 19/20 Soundbox Season; Kronos Quartet; San Francisco Symphony; Orphic Moments (dir. Zack Winokur); Abraham In Flames (composer Aleksandra Vrebalov); Perle Noir (Tyshawn Sorey & Julia Bullock); Arkhipov (composer Peter Knell); Birds in the Moon (composer Mark Grey); Iphigenia (Wayne Shorter & Esperanza Spalding); Everything Rises (Jennifer Koh & Davóne Tines); The Hunting Gun (dir. François Girard); Only an Octave Apart (dir. Zack Winokur) and UnRavelled (dir. James Bonas). Between 2018 and 2023 Cath was the producer for AMOC* (American Modern Opera Company).
Amanda Cooper is an Arts Administrator and Advocate. She is currently a freelance arts manager and consultant, working with a wide variety of music and theater companies around New York City. Recent work includes: A.R.T./New York, DNAWORKS, The New Ohio, The Prototype Festival, Concrete Temple Theatre, Sinking Ship, and Music Before 1800; NYSCA, Stein | Holum Projects and En Garde Arts. From 2011-2015, she was the General Manager for HERE Arts Center, a multi-disciplinary arts space in Manhattan. Prior to HERE, she held positions at The House Foundation, Symphony Space, Theatre Development Fund, Voice & Vision Theater and the Look + Listen Festival, where she has been serving as the President since 2014. Amanda is a published theater writer, and has served as an auditor and grant panelist for New York State and New York City. She is a graduate of NYU’s Gallatin program, and a trained mediator through New York Peace Institute. She loves flora and fauna, and the city.
Ria Cooper is a theater maker, arts administrator, and educator. She lives in Sarasota, FL, where she has worked in various capacities with the Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County, Asolo Repertory Theatre, Fogartyville Peace Education and Action Center, Harvey Milk Festival, Sarasota African American Cultural Coalition, the SOURCE at Planned Parenthood, and Suncoast Black Arts Collaborative. She served as co-chair of the Sarasota County Arts Education Partnership from 2019 to 2023.
Prior to moving to Florida, Ria lived in New York City, where she worked with Columbia University, Henry Street Settlement, Juilliard, Primary Stages, and 78th Street Theatre Lab, among others. She partnered with the NYC DOE as co-creator and co-facilitator of a nationally recognized anti-bullying program, Alice’s Story, which was featured on the cover of TIME Magazine for Kids. She holds certificates from Cornerstone Theater Company, The Kennedy Center, and the National Theatre Institute. Ria received a B.A. in Theatre and Dance from Oberlin College and an M.A. in Applied Theatre from CUNY School of Professional Studies.
Nadine Goggins is a seasoned solution-focused Administrative/Executive / Personal Assistant renowned for her adept management of diverse projects in partnership with businesses, organizations, and entrepreneurs. Nadine's extensive background shines through as the proprietor and Virtual Assistant of LibelleCo. With a degree in Business Management and a tenure at IBM, complemented by successful ownership and management of a retail gift store. Nadine's achievements extend to literary recognition, acknowledged in The Sacred Bombshell Handbook of Self-Love by Abiola Abrams for her exceptional Virtual Assistant services. Fluent in English and German, Nadine bridges language gaps to elevate client communication. Her multi-platform proficiency and multifaceted skills encompass Internet Marketing, General Administration, Web/Graphic Design, and Word Processing, supported by a vigorous drive for excellence. Beyond her entrepreneurial pursuits, Nadine's devotion to family, friends, and community is unwavering. She channels her creative energy into crafts, travel, digital media, cooking, and acoustic guitar learning. Guided by a mission to foster enduring bonds with purpose-driven individuals, Nadine's passion radiates through her work and life.