On Facebook and here on the SITI Company blog, SITI has been spotlighting alumni of our many training programs. Today, we have the great pleasure of introducing you to Travis Russ. Travis is the founding Artistic Director of Life Jacket Theatre Company, a company focused on creating works based on real events. Travis is an Associate Professor at Fordham University, where he teaches graduate and undergraduate classes in communication and performance. He leads The Storytelling Project, sponsored by Fordham University, where he helps people from diverse communities tell their real stories on stage in front of a live audience. He is a member of The Civilians’ Field Research Team and contributed material to their production of The Way They Live, which premiered at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2015 as part of the company’s artists-in-residency. He is a writer and director and his plays include Jack & Jelly (starring Nelsan Ellis), Norman’s Beard, and Gorey, which is currently on stage at HERE Arts Center. He recently answered some questions for us and we are delighted to share her answers with you!
1. When did you first train with SITI?
Winter 2013 – during one of the intense 2-week Viewpoints and Suzuki sessions. Then, I did the 2013 Summer Intensive at Skidmore.
2. What are you most excited that you’re doing or working on right now?
I’m extremely excited about GOREY about the aesthete Edward Gorey. The show is getting great reviews and is running at HERE Arts Center until May 22.
3. What is the most important thing you learned from SITI?
Anne Bogart is simply amazing. I find myself quoting her practically every day. SITI taught me how to work in a collaborative creative environment to create great work.
4. What in your creative life are you proudest of?
Launching my new theatre company focused on bringing real stories to life on the stage.
5. Tell us about a piece of art that has recently inspired you.
I’m kind of obsessed with Rufus Wainwright’s new album, Take All My Loves, about nine of Shakespeare sonnets. Beautiful, complicated, and heartbreaking.
Keep up with our blog to read and learn about more SITI Alumni and what they’re up to by following SITI’s blogs at siti.org/blog. If there’s an alum you want an update on, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org!