2006 Artists in Residence
2006 Harman-Eisner Artist in Residence
Anna Deavere Smith
Anna Deavere Smith is said to have created a new form of theater. Following her interviews with scores of individuals, usually on a topic of civic and political interest, she creates works in which she plays many characters—as many as 52 in one production—representing multiple points of view. When she received a MacArthur Grant, her work was cited for its “a blend of theatrical art, social commentary, journalism, and intimate reverie.” Ms. Smith is University Professor at New York University where she teaches at the Tisch School of the Arts. She is the founding director of the Institute on the Arts and Civic Dialogue, dedicated to supporting artists whose works address social issues and engender civic engagement. Among her honors she counts a National Humanities Medal, presented by President Obama in 2013, two Tony nominations, and the Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize. She is perhaps best known to television audiences as Nancy McNally on The West Wing and Gloria Akalitus on Nurse Jackie.