Student Ambassador Program Offers International Opportunities at USITT23

January 6, 2023

Learning about theatre design and practice in other countries is possible without crossing the border. At USITT23, we will have four international guests presenting sessions about their work. In addition, four students will be selected to spend time with these guests for one-on-one conversations about productions in their countries. We have already announced award winning Czech costume designer, Simona Rybakova, and Bangladeshi cultural activist in theatre, Faiz Zahir. 

In addition, the International Committee and Digital Media Commission will be hosting Joanne Popinska, a film director specializing in Virtual Reality. She is the co-founder of Infinite Frame Media, and a documentarian and sociologist with a Ph.D. in Film Directing, specializing in Virtual Reality from the Polish National Film School. Her expertise is focused in film, rather than theatre, so this is your opportunity to explore this emerging technology specifically for film applications. She dedicates her creative vision to create important conversations around complex topics such as human rights, animal rights, and the environment. By using the latest technology and various narrative techniques, she is continually exploring how to get the attention of audiences and how to evoke empathy and interest in different perspectives.

Our fourth guest is Amethyst First Rider, a member of the Blood Tribe, born and raised in Calgary, Alberta.  She graduated from the University of Lethbridge in 1980 and received her Master’s of Fine Arts from the University of Calgary. Amethyst engaged in further theatre and drama development at Banff Centre for the Arts, Banff Alberta. Ms. First Rider taught Native Literature at the University of Lethbridge for 10 years as a sessional instructor and is an instructor at Canadian Academy of Mask and Puppetry. At present, Ms. First Rider is a major proponent in buffalo restoration, being one of the original organizers of Iinii Initiative, an ongoing buffalo restoration project that has resulted in the signing of a Buffalo Treaty by First Nations on both sides of the Canada – USA border.

For more information, guidelines, and applications, click here.