TEAM I DIGRESS
Our team brings together eight unique personal and professional trajectories: united in collaboration as a central tenet to the process of making, questioning, and re/envisioning a potential poetics of performative intimacy. Drawing on our collective disciplines we seek to create unfamiliar terrain. We endeavor to stimulate each other as artists, mine ourselves and experiences with authenticity and honesty, and create spaces for spectators and viewers alike to experience exhilarating possibilities of storytelling.
Sauda Aziza Jackson | Writer, Performer
Sauda Jackson has performed in many theater productions during her twenty plus years in New York City. The Chicago native has had the opportunity to perform in Now is the Time with Little Lord, Iona Flies Away with Tanisha Christie, Expense of Spirit & Limitless Joy with International Wow (Josh Fox), Sponsored by Nobody’s The Arts & Behind the Bullseye, and The Making of King Kong by Lisa Clair at Target Margin Theater. Her own project I Digress: The Intimate Insights of a Childhood Weirdo, a four episode transmedia performance memoir, has been in transformation and development over the last five years. Starting as two stories and a song performed at Dixon Place’s Little Theater, it went on to have developmental workshop readings at Dixon Place (NYC) SFX Festival (NYC) and Wunder Bar (Syracuse, NY). Sauda studied theater at Eastern Illinois University graduating with a B.A in Theater Arts and continued on in the MFA Acting program at Brooklyn College.
April Sweeney | Director
April is an actor, director, theater maker, and maker of other things. Her performance work has included collaborations with directors of distinct and diverse methods of performance making, moving between intimate immersive theater, (re)drawing and complicating “classical” heroines, plays in translation, hybrid performance works exploring the language of film and stage simultaneously, devised theater, and improvised film. She has performed in theaters and festivals in Argentina, Bolivia, Belgium, Colombia, Costa Rica, France, Hungary and in theaters across the U.S.
As a director she has created intimate chamber works in NYC, an immersive play in Maine, a 4 episode transmedia performance memoir, staged readings for regional theater, large scale new works with college students, created theater with communities in Patagonia and the Bolivian selva, and curated theater engagement projects with Central New York audiences. April is a Professor of Theater at Colgate University. MFA Columbia University
Yana Biryükova | Projection Design, Editing
Yana is a video artist and film editor. Her theatrical designs include Hart Island (Mason Holdings); I and You (Bristol Riverside Theatre); The Karamazovs (The Other Shore); Mlima’s Tale (Westport Country Playhouse); The White Devil (Red Bull Theater); Dropping Gumballs on Luke Wilson (The Working Theater); SELKIE (Dutch Kills); Grounded (Westport Country Playhouse); Promise Land, Imogen Says Nothing, and Scenes from Court Life (Yale Repertory Theatre); Square Root of Three Sisters (Dmitry Krymov Lab); Don Quixotte (Yale Opera); Transport (Irish Repertory Theatre) among others. In addition to theatre design Yana has worked on art installations and performances featured at the Yale Art Gallery, Catskill Art Society, Harvestworks and others. She is a 2019 finalist of the Robert L.B. Tobin Director-Designer showcase for Opera America. The recipient of the 2020 Connecticut Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Achievement in Projection, Yana has lectured and taught workshops on projection design at Harvard University. MFA: Yale School of Drama
Dominic Bedasse | Animation
Dominick Bedasse is a storyboard artist and animator based in Brooklyn NY. Primarily, he serves as a board artist for the LA based animation company, Titmouse Inc, out of their East Coast studio in Manhattan. A recent MFA graduate of the School of Visual Arts Computer Arts Department, he is most known for his laurel decorated short animation Run Little Boy (Best Animation: Queen City Film Festival, NJ, Baltimore International Black Film Festival, MD, Gary International Black Film Festival, IN). While he humbly considers himself “fresh” in the animation industry, Dominick takes pride in his continued growth within animation pipeline; starting off as a storybook artist, now helping to develop various productions through multiple animation mediums. Recently, he returned to the School of Visual Arts as an adjunct professor in Career Strategy for the BFA Animation Department.
Tatiana Stolpovskaya | Director of Photography
Tatiana is a New York based cinematographer and experimental filmmaker. She explores different types of media, combining analog filmmaking with digital media production and live streaming. Her work explores themes related to immigration and LGBTQ+ rights. Born and raised in Moscow, Tatiana studied Cultural Studies at Russian State University for the Humanities and Cinematography at the Moscow Independent School of Film and TV. Films she shot as DP have been screened worldwide including 53 Pesaro Film Festival in Italy; KINOTAVR and ArtDocFest in Russia; Ishinomaki International Film Festival, Japan; and Women Media Arts and Film Festival, Australia (winner Best Media Arts in 2017 for NYC FLOW). Tatiana received an Award for Outstanding Achievement in Integrated Media Arts and MFA degree from Hunter College (City University of New York).
Ashley M. Thomas | Dramaturgy
Ashley M. Thomas, she/her/hers, was born and raised in Harlem, New York. A writer, dramaturg, and doula—she is interested in exploring the intersections of culture, politics, and Beyoncé through a Black feminist lens. Ashley is a proud alumna of the First Wave Urban Arts Scholarship at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she graduated with her Bachelor of Social Work. She is currently an MFA candidate studying Dramaturgy and Dramatic Criticism at Yale School of Drama.
Mike Weiss | Original Music, Performer
Mike Weiss is a Brooklyn based performer, musician, songwriter, sound designer. He is a founding artist of Feed the Herd Theatre Company, The Ohmies, and Donksongs United. As an associate music producer he has worked with Melody Lanes Studios. As a composer and sound designs he has collaborated with Inkfish Art, Random Folk, and Department of Theater at Colgate University. His peroformance work includes The Moblees (CBC), Sesame Studios, Chicago Fire (NBC), and Tiger Orange (film), along with downtown theater and musical performances over the last twenty years. BFA Marymount Manhattan College