WASHINGTON, D.C.: Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company has announced the inaugural cohort of the Miranda Family Fellowship Program. Beginning virtually this month, Autumn J. Mitchell, Jeremy Pesigan, and Citlali Pizarro will join and work with Woolly Mammoth in the production, new work, and connectivity departments respectively.
“Our fellowship program aims to make sure that the back of the house is as diverse as actors on stage,” said Luis Miranda in a statement. “With this inaugural cohort at Woolly Mammoth, we have launched a pipeline for future arts administrators and technicians who have been time and time again excluded from the industry. We cannot wait to continue building the fellowship program to support even more behind-the-scenes artists and to see what’s to come for Autumn, Jeremy, and Citlali as they kick off their careers.”
The new program was announced in December 2020 and subsequently received over 200 applications from around the country. Designed to create a new point of entry into the field, the program provides early career professionals from historically excluded communities with the resources and training necessary to build careers as the next generation of arts administrators and theatre technicians. Fellows receive a full-time salary, a housing stipend, and healthcare benefits.
“I am personally thrilled to get started working with these three talented individuals,” said artistic director Maria Manuala Goyanes in a statement. “May this just be the start of their lifelong careers in the theatre. We are tremendously grateful to the Miranda Family and our early supporters for helping us get this program off the ground.”
Autumn J. Mitchell (she/they) is a freelance stage manager from the historical city of Savannah, Ga., who is delighted to join Woolly Mammoth as the Production Management Fellow. At Woolly, Mitchell will be aiding in the realization of the technical elements of all productions in a safe and resource-efficient manner, in service to Woolly’s artistic mission and commitment to equity, diversity, inclusion, and access. Their passion for theatre and art has always been rooted in their love for supporting creatives and the communities in which they come from. Mitchell graduated from the illustrious HBCU Alabama State University with a BA in Theatre and Performing Arts, with a concentration in Technical Theatre. Their previous stage management credits include Until the Flood and Pass Over at Studio Theatre (D.C.), The Magical Musical Holiday Step Show with Step Afrika! (D.C.), and Fences and The Man of Destiny at American Players Theatre (Wisconsin). In addition to their stage management work, Mitchell is an aspiring production manager and theatre operations manager with the goal of opening their own nonprofit theatre organization to support Black and brown artists and technicians from marginalized communities in the South.
Jeremy Pesigan (he/they) is joining the New Work department and is excited to be fully immersed in the artistic process of Woolly’s unique season planning, new-work development, and production dramaturgy processes. Pesigan is an artist from the Midwest. His previous directing credits include a production of we are in the endtimes now by Marley Smith and staged readings of Extreme Home Makeover and Fabuloso by Makasha Copeland. They graduated from Northwestern University with a BS in theatre and Asian American studies, where they also received a Nikki Levy Queer Performance Grant from the Performance Studies Department. They are an aspiring amateur mycologist and a member of Anakbayan Chicago.
Citlali Pizarro (she/her) is joining Woolly’s acclaimed Connectivity department, which links the theatre’s artistic mission with its social and political mission through artistic programs, community engagement, and audience enrichment activities. Pizarro recently graduated from Swarthmore College, where she double majored in theatre, with a focus on social justice performance theory and practice, and an individualized major, Race and Gender in Education. While at Swarthmore, she gained experience acting, writing, and directing, and worked as a research and teaching assistant for “Performing Latinidad,” a course exploring diasporic experiences, decolonial theory, and the politics of latinidad through performance. As a student of transformative justice and prison abolition, Pizarro believes in using theatre to envision better, more just worlds. Her work as a member of Students for Transformative Justice, Abolition, and Restoration (STAR), Women’s Resource Center associate, and editor for Voices, a student-run magazine centering marginalized students and social justice movements on campus, has greatly informed her artistic practice. She also works as a freelance journalist and is currently working on a musical with her friend and writing partner, Omar Camps-Kamrin. She is excited and honored to be the first Miranda Family Fellow in Connectivity at Woolly Mammoth.
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