Brooke O’Harra

Director/Professor of Directing and Acting
And founder of The Theatre of a Two-headed Calf

EDUCATION

Tulane University, The Graduate College, MFA  in Theatre Arts with an Emphasis in Directing  2001
Lafayette College, Easton PA , BA  1995 (Cum Laude with Honors in English)

AWARDS AND HONORS

NYSCA Grant for I am Bleeding All Over the Place, 2013
Nominee Herb Alpert Award in Theatre 2013
NYSCA Individual Artists Award for Directing The Opera Project: You, My Mother, 2011
Performance Garage Artists Residency 2011
University Settlement Artists Residency 2010-11
Nominee Herb Alpert Award in Theatre, 2010
Franklin Furnace Foundation Individual Artists Award for Performance, 2009
Art Matters Travel Grant for Room for Cream Istanbul, Turkey, 2009
Village Voice Best of New York 2008 for Room for Cream
OBIE Award Grant 2008
TimeOut New York Best 0f 2007 for Drum of the Waves of Horikawa
Gothamist Best of 2007 for Drum of the Waves of Horikawa
NYSCA Individual Artist Award for Directing Drum of the Waves of Horikawa, 2007
Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Swingspace Project Development Grant (2005/06)
HERE Artist in Residence (2005/07)
Nominee for the Alan Schneider Director Award (2005)
NEA/TCG Career Development Grant for Directors (2002-04)
Chashama AREA grant recipient (3 times:  2001, 2002, and 2004)
Polish Cultural Institute Award/Travel Grant for Outstanding Direction of Polish plays 2003
Drama League Directing Fellow
Marquis Scholar (4 year full tuition, room, board, and books college/academic scholarship)

CURRENT DIRECTING PROJECTS

I am Bleeding All Over the Place:  Studies in directing or nine encounters between me and you
This is a solo project that had its first three encounters at The New Museum for Contemporary Art, NYC in May of 2014. I generated the texts in collaboration with playwrights Erin Courtney, Kristen Kosmas and Heidi Schreck.  The fourth encounter will take place in August 2014 in Seoul, South Korea and subsequent ones will occur in Maine, NYC and London. The directing project will be completed in 2015 with the intent that the studies become a book on directing.

Jack Spicer’s Billy The Kid
This a new musical that I am developing with playwright Lisa D’Amour and composer Brendan Connelly. We work-shopped it in New Orleans in 2012.  And have subsequently been invited to develop and premier it at Mt. Tremper Arts Center this July 2014.

PROFESSIONAL DIRECTING

I am Bleeding All Over the Place: It’s personal. – New Museum for Contemporary Art, NYC – 2014
I am Bleeding All Over the Place: Show me. 
– New Museum for Contemporary Art, NYC – 2014
I am Bleeding All Over the Place: Are we in conflict?
– New Museum for Contemporary Art, NYC – 2014
Triangle of Resistance (new music performance) –
Roulette, NYC -2013
The Opera Project: You, My Mother –
River To River Festival, LMCC, NYC – 2013
Jack Spicer’s Billy The Kid – The Side-Arm, New Orleans, LA – 2012
The Opera Project: You, My Mother – La Mama, E.T.C., NYC – 2012
Hotel Play an excerpt (with Wally Shawn) – La Mama, E.T.C., NYC – 2011
You, My Mother (work-in-progress) – University Settlement, NYC – 2011
Trifles – Ontological Hysteric Theatre, NYC – 2010
Trifles (developmental showing) – Prelude ’09 Festival, Martin Segal Theatre – 2009
It cannot be called our mothers but our graves  (Macbeth) – Soho Rep Studio Lab, Industry City Studio, NYC – 2008
Gentleman Caller –Clubbed Thumb, NYC – 2008
The Drum of the Waves of Horikawa – HERE, NYC & Perishable Theater, Providence – 2007
Macbeth – Soho Rep Studio Lab, NYC – 2007
Maria/Stuart  (reading) – Soho Rep Writers and Directors Lab/reading – 2007
Must Don’t Whip Um – Walker Arts Center MN, St. Ann’s Warehouse NYC – 2007
El Panico – BAiT, PS 122 – 2006
Major Barbara – Annex Theatre, La Mama E.T.C, NYC – 2006
Cataract – Perishable Theatre, Providence, RI – 2005
Major Barbara  (Part I) – Chashama, NYC – 2004
How High The Moon – Perishable Theatre, Providence, RI – 2004
The Life & Death of Tom Thumb – La Mama, E.T.C., NYC – 2004
Be What You Want to Be – Public School 134, Bronx, NY – 2004
Temporaria – Perishable Theater, Providence, RI – 2003
The Difference Engine – Bowery Poetry Club, NYC – 2003
The Mother – La Mama, E.T.C., NYC – 2003
The Mother (Part I) – Bowery Poetry Club, NY – 2002
Looking for the Pony – Samuel French One Acts Festival, NYC – 2002
Looking for the Pony – Vital Theatre, NYC – 2002
Tumor Brainiowicz – La Mama, E.T.C., NYC – 2002
Tumor Brainiowicz (Part III) – Dixon Place, NYC – 2001
Tumor Brainiowicz (Part II) – Chashama, NYC – 2001
Tumor Brainiowicz (Part I) – Manhattan Theatre Source, NYC – 2001
The Madman and the Nun – Madame Palmetto’s Co., New Orleans, LA – 2000
Kyogen Plays – Hangar Theater, Kidstuff, Ithaca NY – 1999
Punch and Judy – The Wedge/Hangar, Ithaca NY – 1999
The Wife Seller/AFB – The Wedge/Hangar, Ithaca NY – 1999

DIRECTING FOR UNIVERSITIES AND COLLEGES

Enjoy – Schaeffer Theatre, Bates College – 2014
Heartbreak House – Rooke Theatre, Mt. Holyoke College – 2012
Uncommon Women and Others – Rooke Theatre, Mt. Holyoke College – 2012
Checkov One Acts – Rooke Theatre, Mt. Holyoke College – 2011
Tragedy: A Tragedy – Rooke Theatre, Mt. Holyoke College – 2010
Hello Failure – Rooke Theatre, Mt Holyoke College – 2010
Trifles and Quarelling Pair – Rooke Theatre, Mt Holyoke College – 2009
The Father – Rooke Theatre, Mt Holyoke College – 2009
Braves Smiles – Rooke Theatre, Mt Holyoke College – 2008
Major Barbara – University of Rochester, Rochester, NY – 2005
Tom Thumb the Great – NYU TSOA Drama ETW’s Mainstage, NYC – 2004
Ubu Roi – Tulane University, Lupin Theater – 2000
The Maids – Tulane University, Lab Theater, New Orleans – 1999
Hedda Gabler – Tulane University, Lab Theater, New Orleans – 1998
In the Land of Tsu (3 Kyogen plays) – Tulane University, Lab Theater, New Orleans – 1998
The Successful Life of 3 – Tulane University, Lab Theater, New Orleans – 1997

PERFORMANCES

Tom Murrin’s Alien Comic – In celebration of the life and work of performance artist and playwright Tom Murrin, Sharon Hayes and I  and re-performed  Tom Murrin’s early Alien Comic piece in an L.A. backyard 1982.

Act 2 – This is a project in development where I direct artist Sharon Hayes to perform lines Hedda Gabler (as Hedda) with all other characters lines un-spoken. The first performance will take place in the entrance of the Stedelijk Museum. The Stedelijk Museum,  Amsterdam, Netherlands – 2012

Times Passes – This is an on-going performance project I am developing with artist Sharon Hayes.  It is an 8 hour performance that uses the book on tape of Virginia Woolf’s To the Lighthouse as its spine.  I also perform in the piece. Performing Garage, NYC – 2011
Room For Cream Season 3  (6 episodes) – This project is a live-lesbian soap opera that ran for three seasons. I conceived of the project, directed it, co-wrote for it, and performed as a regular character in the serial. La Mama, ETC NYC – 2010
Kaygan Zemin (Turkish Lesbian soap – 3 episodes) – This is project that I collaborated on with an organization of queer activists in Istanbul to create their own version of Room for Cream. I co-wrote, directed, and performed in the episodes. Lambda Istanbul, Istanbul, Turkey – 2009
Room for Cream Season 2 (8 episodes) – La Mama, ETC NYC – 2009
Room for Cream Season 1- the Box Set  (11 episodes) – La Mama, ETC NYC – 2009
Room for Cream Season 1  (11 episodes) – La Mama, ETC, PS 122 – 2007-8
I could gnaw off my hand  – a collaboration with visual  artist Jim Drain – I choreographed it piece based on Iggy Pop. Green Naftali Gallery, NYC – 2007
A Quality of Life (in Japanese) – a project I conceived, co-wrote, directed and performed in with a group of 10 artists in Japan. Street Performance, Ueno Park, Tokyo, Japan – 1996-7

ASSISTANT DIRECTING

Henry IV, Part I  -with Richard Maxwell, BAM, Brooklyn, NY – 2003
Broken Glass  -with Joseph Chaikin, 7 Stages, Atlanta, GA – 2003
The Master Builder   -with Jan Nebesky, Komedie Divadlo, Prague, Czech Republic – 1999
Blithe Spirit   -with Ron Bashford, Hangar Theater, Ithaca NY – 1999

TEACHING

Assistant Professor, Department of Theater and Dance, Bates College 2013-Currently
Directing and Advanced Directing, Beginning Acting and Advanced Acting, What is Performance?, Advanced Performance Seminar, Advisor for all directing thesis and independent study projects

Visiting Artist (two-day workshop and guest lecture), California Institute of the Arts, 2014

Visiting  Assistant Professor, Theatre Arts Department, Mt Holyoke College, 2008-2013
Directing, Acting 1, Acting 2, Advanced Performance Seminars (Japanese Theatre: Theory and Practice, Performing with Video, Feminism and Form), Viewpoints, Movement, Theatre Practicum (this involves directing a mainstage play each semester)

Adjunct, New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts Experimental Theatre Wing, 2004-2008
Upper Level Scene Study in Eastern/Western Performance, Ibsen/Strindberg, and new texts, Self Scripting, Kyogen for the Summer Acting Program

Adjunct, New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts Drama Department, 2006-Currently (Summer)
Advanced Improvisation, “Downtown” Theatre (a Summer intensive of 16 hours a week of lecture and attending 3 performances a week – for 5 weeks)


Artist-Teacher, Vermont College of Fine Arts M.F.A program 2011 and 2013

Visiting Artist (one-day workshop), Trinity/Brown MFA Program, 2007
Movement and Japanese Theatre

Visiting Artist (one-day workshop), Wheaton College, MA, 2007
Movement and Japanese Theatre

Visiting Professor of Theatre, University of Rochester, Spring 2005
Acting, Introduction to theatre,  and directed a mainstage production

Freelance Art Teacher, NYC Public Schools, grades 3-12, 2001-2008
Acting, Conflict Resolution, Playwriting, Writing, Visual Arts, Scenic and Costume Design

Visiting Artist Residency (one week), Lafayette College, Department of English, Spring 2003
Experimental Performance, Acting for the stage with live video feed, Self Scripting

Freelance Teacher, Broadway in the Schools / Bronx Dance Academy, 2002
Acting and Voice Instructor

Visiting Artist (2 day workshop), Pace University, Department of Theater, 2001
Workshop on Artaud, Grotowski & Bogart

Visiting Artist (one week), Temple University, Department of English, 2000
Poetry in Performance (performance skills for poetry students)

Instructor, Tulane University, Department of Theater and Dance, 1997-2000
Acting Shakespeare, Fundamentals of Acting (same as Acting 1 – I taught 6 sections of this class over 3 years)

Ministry of Education, Japan, 1995-1997
Curriculum Development: Performance, Debate, Formulating the Critical Argument (writing)

CURATING

Nostaligia isn’t what it used to be: 11 evenings of theater and performance
Co-curated with Sharon Hayes, this is a series that explores the intersections of theatre and performance, now and in the past.  Notable guests have included John Jesurun, Peggy Shaw, Lucy Sexton of Dance Noise, Novice Theory, The Nonsense Company and works by Joan Jonas and the Wooster Group. We have held 4 of the 11 evenings to date, and have shown work of 25 artists.

Two-headed Calf’s Salon/Saloon
Co-curated with Brendan Connelly, this was a series (9 events in all) where we curated experimental writers, musicians, filmmakers, dancers, and theater artists into evenings of casual performance and conversation.  There were usually five artists in an evening always from differing disciplines – the performances were followed by discussion and then a dance party.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Publications

“Women’s Liberation Cinema, Christopher Street Liberation Day, film still, 1970.”

Catalogue for Sharon Hayes. “There’s So Much I Want To Say To You.”  Whitney Museum of American Art , New York, 2012.

Profiles/Articles

Del Vecchio, Jessica.  “Mother of All Collaborations: The Theatre of a Two-headed Calf Debuts a Chamber Opera.”  Brooklyn Rail.  February 2012.

Murrin, Tom. “You, My Mother: Experimental Opera Comes to La Mama.” Paper Magazine, February 9, 2012.

Kastleman, Rebecca. “A Silenced Woman.”  American Theatre,  February 2010.

Clements, Alexis.  “Two for the Time:  Reviving Susan Glaspell in NY.”  Brooklyn Rail, November 2009.

Blankenship, Mark.  “A New Recipe for Trifles: Theatre of a Two-headed Calf re-imagines a classic American play.  Theatre Development Fund, January 2010.

Harnetiaux, Trish. “Room For Cream? Always.”  The Brooklyn Rail, March 2008.

Babb, Roger. “Front & Center: Kabuki meets Punk.” American Theatre, October 2007.

Babb, Roger, “Rape, Shame and Suicide: Theatre of a Two-Headed Calf Makes Kabuki/Punk Waves.”  The Brooklyn Rail, October 2007.

Luber, Steve.  “In Media Res: Why Multimedia Performance?”  PAJ (Performing Arts Journal) 87 (2007): 15-29.

Kuhn, Sarah. “Ask a Director.”  Back Stage, November 8-14, 2007.

Shaw, Helen.  “Pretty in Punk.” TimeOut NY, Oct 25-31, 2007.

Schloff ,  Aaron Mack. “ Translation in Action: Meet me in Buenos Aires.”  American Theatre,  May/June 2007.

Hunka, George. “Shaw, Kabuki, Eva Peron: The Usual Mix.” New York Times (Sunday) June 25, 2006.

Luber, Steve.  “Bizarre Barbara: Kabuki, Shaw, and Language.”  Sesquicentennial Shaw: An International Bernard Shaw Conference, Brown University, June 10, 2006.

Blankenship, Mark. “Passport to Argentina: PS 122 brings Buenos Aires to U.S.”  Variety Magazine, November 2006.

Hunka, George.  “Going South:  A sampler of daring new Argentinean theater comes to PS 122.”  TimeOut NY,  Nov. 2-6, 2006.

Babb, Roger. “Two-headed Calf with Roger Babb.”  The Brooklyn Rail, Dec 2005/Jan 2006.

Gray, Channing. “Cabin fever at Perishable Theatre: Visiting company will help mount an extravagant production of The Cataract.”  The Providence Sunday Journal, May 1, 2005.

Keramidas, Kimon. “Witkiewicz’s THE MOTHER by The Theatre of a Two-headed Calf at La Mama.” Slavic and East European Performance Vol. 24, No. 2 (2003): 50-55.

Keramidas, Kimon. “Two by Witkiewicz in Manhattan: Tumor Brainiowicz and The Water Hen.” Slavic and East European Performance Vol.22, No.3 (2002): 88-92.

Reviews

Smith, Olivia Jane. “Olivia Jane Smith on You, My Mother.”  New York Theater Review.Com. February 17, 2012.

Jorden, James.  “Mom-entously Original.”  New York Post. February 14, 2012.

Horowitz, Andy. “You, My Mother at La Mama.”  Culturebot. February 14, 1012.

Contino, Particia. “La Mama and Two-headed Calf present You, My Mother.”  FlavorPill.  February 14, 2012.

Rosenberg, Marion Lignana. “ Review: You, My Mother.” TimeOut New York.  February 13, 2012.

Vignola, Trish. “You, My Mother.”  Off Broadway World.com.  February 13, 2012.

Montgomary, Mitch.  “NY Review: You, My Mother.” BackStage.  February 10, 2012.

Soloski, Alexis.  “You, My Mother:  Mothers, Daughters, Animals Suits.”  Village Voice.  February 8, 2012.

Jaworowski, Ken. “Sometimes, It takes a Woman to Solve a Murder.” New York Times, February 2, 2010.

Shaw, Helen. “Trifles:  Theatre of a Two-headed Calf polishes Susan Glaspell’s Stylish Gem.”  Time Out New York, February 4-10, 2010.

Soloski, Alexis.  “Room For Cream Season One: The Box Set! Downtown’s Favorite Lesbian Serial Stirs it Up Again.”   The Village Voice, February 3, 2009.

Feldman, Adam.  “Room For Cream Season 1.”  Time Out New York, February 5-11, 2009.

Balthasar, Jonathan.  “Room for Cream: a new lesbian soap opera at La Mama theatre.”  Go Magazine,  February 5, 2009.

O’Brien, Samantha. “Get it While it’s Hot.”  Offoffonline, January 5, 2008.

Tweed. “Kabuki-Punk and Simulation.” Obscene Jester, November 11, 2007.

Cote, David. “Drum of the Waves of Horikawa.” TimeOut NY,  Nov 1-7, 2007.

Del Signore, John. “Opinionist: Drum of the Waves of Horikawa.”  Gothamist, November 4, 2007.

Saltz, Rachel.  “Adultry, Blood, Guts, And Samurai.”  New York Times, November 1, 2007.

Murray, Christopher. “Drum of the Waves of Horikawa.”  Back Stage, October 27, 2007.

Rodriguez, Bill. “Making Waves: Kabuki met Punk Rock at Perishable.”  Boston Phoenix, April 25, 2007.

Simonson, Roger. “Major Barbara.” TimeOut NY, January 19-25, 2006.

Stevens, Andrea. “Shaw’s Skewers, Kabuki-Style.”  New York Times, January 18, 2006.

Shaw, Helen.  “A ‘Major’ Achievment.”  The Sun, New York, January  17, 2006.

Rodriguez, Bill. “Pure Magic: The Perishable’s The Cataract.”  Providence Phoenix, May 13-19, 2005.

Luber, Steve. “My Kingdom for a Potato.” Offoffonline, May 13, 2004.

Mufson, Daniel. “All Thumbs: Henry Fielding’s Tom Thumb, fried and with lots of butter.” Village Voice, May 5, 2004.

McNulty, Charles. “The Avant-Garde gets Polished: Two plays by Stanislaw Witkiewicz.”  Village Voice, April 8, 2003.

Conferences/Talks/Panels

Panel: A conversation on a few topics relevant to actors, playwrights, directors, and artists, including gender, the everyday, and the extraordinary problem of “conflict removed”
In 1947, Tennessee Williams wrote in an essay, “The heart of man, his body and his brain, are forged in a white hot furnace for the purpose of conflict…and that with the conflict removed, the man is a sword cutting daisies….” Written in response to the legitimation and accolades that came with the explosive success of Streetcar Named Desire, Williams’s assertion points to the pervasive value of conflict: conflict as necessary for cultural production and conflict as a dramatic vehicle. Brooke O’Harra’s current project, “I am Bleeding All Over the Place: Studies in directing or nine encounters between me and you,” works in active resistance to such valorization. It offers, instead, an exploration of conflict that remains unannounced and, as such, creates new spaces or forms for the emotional, social, or political tension that exists in the so-called everyday or quotidian. This panel, made up of Sadie Benning, Erin Courtney, Moyra Davey, John Jesurun,and Kate Valk, and moderated by Brooke O’Harra, follows the first three studies of O’Harra’s project “I am Bleeding All Over the Place.” This group of artists comes together to address how their work (both solo and collaborative) engages tension inside of the everyday, the relationship of gender to the rendering of conflict, and the materialization of both conflict announced and unannounced in contemporary theater and art.

Talk:  “On Directing Stanislaw Ignacy Witkiewicz.” 2009, Yale University, Eastern European Studies, New Haven, CT.

Conference: “Panel: ”Predlude 2009, Martin Segal Theatre Center, The Graduate Center, CUNY, New York, NY.

Conference:  I site-directed a performance for artist Sharon Hayes. Istanbul Biennial 2010. Istanbul, Turkey.

Conference:  Guest V.I .P., International Theatre Festival: The World as a Place of Truth. UNESCO’s The Grotowski Year. Wroclaw, PL.  June 14-30,  2010.

Talk: “Chikamatsu in Downtown New York:  The Theatre of a Two-Headed Calf explores the codification of outlaw culture in a performance of the 1726 Kabuki play DRUM OF THE WAVES OF HORIKAWA”  2008, Five College Japan Lecture Series, U Mass Amherst, MA.

Conference: “Intercultural Illuminations: Practice and Performance.” 2007, NoPassport – Dreaming the Americas, CUNY, New York, NY.

Conference:  “Panel: Curators/NYC.”  2006, PRELUDE 06, Martin Segal Theatre Center, The Graduate Center, CUNY, New York, NY.

Conference: “BAiT: Buenos Aires in Translation.”  2006, PRELUDE 06, Martin Segal Theatre Center, The Graduate Center, CUNY, New York, NY.

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