Phillips Exeter Academy
For the first time in Exeter Summer’s 102-year history, all learning took place completely online as a result of circumstances surrounding the global pandemic. Russell Weatherspoon, Exeter Summer's director, adapted the program to ensure it continued to foster the hallmark sense of community and conversation that is so transformative during a regular, in-person session and remain relevant to students perhaps already fatigued with remote learning.
Weatherspoon invited four alumni to share their stories with Exeter Summer students and help illuminate the effects of the pandemic and racial injustice. “The assemblies give the kids just a remarkable set of things to think about,” he says. “Things that are accessible, human and hopefully encouraging. … We’re not trying to solve the pandemic or the lack of racial consciousness, we’re just trying to move people’s heads and the conversation along.”
Christina, an alumna of PEA, was invited to share her newly penned monologue, "My White Privilege", which included thought-provoking lines like: “My white privilege tells me I am not a racist. I am not the problem. How can I be? I’m a white woman. A feminist.”
At the end of Murdock’s performance, Weatherspoon asked the students to do something “unusual.” “Let me invite you for 90 seconds for a little bit of conversation with yourself through note-taking whether you do that on an actual piece of paper, or you are just thinking,” he said. “To engage yourself not so much in response to the voice in this piece, but rather to the voice in your own life, which has been talking to you now for some weeks since George Floyd died, and the world responded as it has. Each of us has been trying to understand where we stand. We’ve certainly had a lot to say about other people, but I want you to take 90 seconds to just make some notes to yourself, with yourself, about where you are, whoever you are.”
Watch Christina's monologue "My White Privilege" below:
Note: The monologue is performed twice and the student Q&A begins at 38 minutes.
SHAKESPEARE's GLOBE THEATRE
Curated by Globe Associate Artist Athena Stevens, who directs with Robin Norton-Hale, Notes to the Forgotten She-Wolves is inspired by Sandi Toksvig’s ongoing campaign to redress the gender imbalance of Wikipedia: at last count, out of the 1.5 million biographies in English on the site, only 17% are of women.
20 phenomenal writers come together to summon up the memory of those for whom history hadn’t told the full story, in the biggest ever festival of new writing in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse.
Christina's monologue, "Sister Story", was about the lives of Katherine and Nerissa Bowes-Lyon, sisters who had severe disabilities and who were also first cousins to Queen Elizabeth II. The sisters were also featured in
Watch Christina's monologue be performed by Sarah Amankwah, which was re-filmed in lockdown below:
UNMUTE is a bold, new and accessible response to this strange new world, that kickstarts the conversation for the arts to become more inclusive than ever. Through a series of digital moments, HACK Theatre invites you to meet and listen to six artists from all across the globe, as they share their thoughts and experiences, their hopes and fears. Each artist will also share a blistering, truthful short adaptation piece that captures this moment and the need for change.
New monologue "From Inside the Chrysalis", adapted from Pema Chödrön's book When Things Falls Apart.
Migreatives is a podcast from Woven Voices that showcases the experiences of first generation migrant creatives working in the UK. Hosts Nadia Cavelle, Zachary Fall, and Ben Weaver-Hincks talk to artists from theatre, film and television about the challenges and opportunities of breaking into the British culture scene. At a unique time of change and rebuilding, Migreatives seeks to champion the migrant and international voices of the UK’s diverse arts community.
Enjoy Christina's interview on disability and access in the arts, her hit one-woman show Dangerous Giant Animals, and auditioning as an international performer in the UK.