PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] -- The Brown Arts Institute (BAI) is invested in exploring the powerful ways in which art can make space for us to wrestle with the challenging and complex topics relevant to our society and cultural wellbeing. As a champion for the arts on a university campus, BAI seeks to encourage the exchange of ideas and the sharing of creative work between students, faculty, staff, and visiting artists. Within campus and beyond campus, BAI intends to help shape pathways of discovery which make way for new works, new investigations, and new lenses on critical societal issues.
To launch an interdisciplinary Interrogating the Classics Series in Spring 2022, the BAI is hosting an intercollegiate tour of Uprooting Medea, a film and theatre project created by upcoming Visiting Artist Shivaike Shah, and Medea co-creator, Francesca Amewudah-Rivers.
Following the success of their groundbreaking 2018 production of Medea while at Oxford University, Khameleon Productions was established in 2020. They have since launched the Uprooting Medea project to provide a provocative lens on the canonic ‘Western’ play by exploring and questioning contemporary themes of race, belonging, identity, home, and foreignness. In the spirit of the initial offering, Khameleon’s Medea reimagines Euripides’s Greek tragedy with an all-global majority cast and crew, and features original compositions, movement and spoken word commissioned by the company.
The four-month tour, curated and produced by Shah, will commence at Brown, in collaboration with the BAI and the Departments of Classics and Theatre Arts & Performance Studies, and will continue across 12 states, visiting over 30 of the nation’s leading colleges and universities, where they will visit classes, work with students in script workshops, and participate in roundtable conversations with students and staff around multiple topics related to the project. At the conclusion of the tour, Khameleon will return to Brown to host a virtual gathering for participating institutions which will make space for an intercollegiate exchange of experiences around the project, including appearances by special guests who will lead discussions interrogating the performance history and legacy of Medea, and the Classics more broadly.
About Brown Arts Institute
The Brown Arts Institute (BAI) at Brown University seeks to cultivate creative expression and foster an interdisciplinary environment where faculty and students learn from one another and from artists and scholars in a wide range of fields across the campus and around the world. The BAI seeks to build on Brown’s reputation as a destination for arts exploration, contributing to cultural enterprise through the integration of theory, practice, and scholarship with an emphasis on innovation and discovery that results from rigorous artmaking and experimentation. Arts.brown.edu
About Khameleon Productions
Khameleon was founded in 2020, drawing on theatre, music and film to develop innovative productions that celebrate the creative power of global majority artists voices. Khameleon believes that creativity is best when it is diverse. The company explores new narratives, platforms untold stories, and discovers fresh outlooks through interdisciplinary forms.
Shivaike Shah is a British Indian producer who has worked in fashion, theatre, and film, currently in production on a major Netflix feature film. After graduating in English from University College, Oxford, in 2019, he founded Khameleon Productions in March 2020. He has since been awarded Arts Council England support, private funding from the UK and the US, and is the creator and host of the Khameleon Classics podcast.
Francesca Amewudah-Rivers is a British Ghanaian-Nigerian actor, composer and musician who was awarded the 2021 London Evening Standard Future Theatre Award for Audio Design. She trained with the National Youth Theatre of Great Britain and graduated in Music from St. John’s College, Oxford, 2019. She has worked with several theatre companies & venues including the Actors Touring Company, the Young Vic, the National Theatre and the Roundhouse.
Participating Colleges & Universities
University of Cincinnati
Hobart and William Smith Colleges
University of Kentucky
The Ohio State University
Penn State University
Texas Tech University
University of Pennsylvania
University of Pittsburgh
The University of Texas at Austin