Artists, activists, policymakers, and thought leaders came together for an interdisciplinary symposium exploring the theatricality of global politics. Taking place during closing weekend of the Woolly Mammoth production of internationally celebrated Chilean playwright Guillermo Calderón’s play Kiss, this free event explored the relationship between theater, political activism, and global politics through an in-depth panel discussion, a film screening, and an excerpt from Calderón’s play Neva.

Moderator Derek GoldmanKyoung Park, Artistic Director, Kyoung’s Pacific Beat (USA/Chile), Yury Urnov, Director of Kiss (USA/Russia), and Lab Think Tank Member Kate Seelye, Senior Vice President, Middle East Institute (USA). (Photo by Lucy Obus)

Inspired by the questions that Kiss poses about global responsibility and the role of the artist as activist and interpreter the symposium explored questions such as: what forms revolution can take and how artists may serve as change-makers in different cultural contexts? What is the relationship between form and content in politically engaged work? What role can theatre play in communities shaken by repression and violence?

The symposium concluded with special remarks from Azar Nafisi, the critically acclaimed author of New York Times Bestseller Reading Lolita in TehranThings I’ve Been Silent About, and The Republic of Imagination. (Photo by Lucy Obus)

Presented by The Lab, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, and the Global Theater Initiative in association with the Middle East Institute’s Arts and Cultural Program.