We'd love you to meet our new Program Coordinator!
In a recent feature for Counterweight, I was asked, “Do you have a fantasy project? What would you do with full funding, time and space?”
To which I replied, “As a woman of color, the reality is, there isn’t room to think about fantasy projects when so many unsung voices need to heard. Fantastical thoughts are the luxury of those never having to second-guess how much space they take up in world, never having to doubt their point of view, and never having to dwell in silence nor apologize for just existing. I want reality projects; a community that will rally behind voices of color, fully fund their projects without scrutiny, and allow them the time and space to live unabashed in their power.”
Unbeknownst to me, months later, as I sat as one of many interviewees for the Program Coordinator position at Theatre of the Oppressed NYC, I was going to be asked almost the same question from TONYC Executive Director Katy Rubin. This time, having to reflect on my “dream and/or perfect job,” I found myself at a crossroads. Do I provide the stock response or unveil my burning truth? Catching the gaze of the no-nonsense Katy, I released my unvarnished veracity. For the first time in decades, I felt heard.
Regardless of the outcome, I exited the table with a sense of power and comfort; it is a majestic experience that will be etched in my heart as a forever memory. Having admired TONYC from afar, it was a boon to witness that they practiced what they preached to the community. Now, as a member of the team, I have a front row seat to the hard work, tenacity, and drive it takes to organize advocacy through the theatrical lens. Dare I say it, TONYC is becoming the perfect job; a reality come true!
TS Hawkins is an international author, performance poet, artivist, and emerging playwright. Her plays & short works include: Seeking Silence, Cartons of Ultrasounds, Too Late to Apologize, They’ll Neglect to Tell You, #RM2B, The Secret Life of Wonder: a prologue in G, AGAIN, #SuiteReality, and “don’t wanna dance with ghosts…”. Hawkins’ one-act choreopoem, AGAIN, was acknowledged for having the "Best Theater Moment of 2017" along with #SuiteReality receiving the 2017 "Reality Check" Surya Bonaly Award. Her books include: Sugar Lumps & Black Eye Blues, Confectionately, Yours, Mahogany Nectar, Lil Blaek Book: all the long stories short, and The Hotel Haikus. Hawkins is most known for her Poetry Master Class, "Thriving Ain't Easy"; a course that infuses health, wellness, and activism through poetry. www.tspoetics.com