Business Affairs

Rebecca Gilman (Incumbent)

It has been one of the greatest honors of my career to serve on the Council of the Dramatists Guild. I remain committed to doing all that I can to represent the needs and concerns of our members and to fight for the rights of playwrights, composers, and librettists everywhere.

If re-elected, I look forward to continuing my work with the Education Committee. I have volunteered to travel again on behalf of the Guild as a Mentoring Artist to KCACTF regional conventions. I am keenly interested in engaging students and educators in conversations about two issues of concern to the Education Committee. The first is its campaign to teach students (and their professors) that no changes can be made to a script without the dramatist’s prior consent. The second is the growing tension around the issue of free speech on campuses and in theatres.

We are all trying to navigate a world in which hate speech seems louder and more accepted than ever, and in which factions strive to hierarchize the stories and experiences of one group above all others. In reaction, some have called for safe spaces, asking that universities and theatres institute a policy of content or trigger warnings and to avoid – or even ban – plays that contain offensive or disturbing material. I want to explore how the Guild can protect its members’ right to free speech while still respecting the points of view of those who feel such measures are necessary. To that end, my colleagues at Northwestern University and I are organizing a symposium on the subject of free speech and safe spaces to take place this spring. We have asked the Guild to join the discussion. Our hope is that we might find solidarity with each other as artists and educators who depend on free expression for our survival.

It has been an honor and a pleasure to have served on the Council the last nine years, and I would be humbled and proud if elected to continue.

BIO: Rebecca Gilman’s plays include Luna Gale, Dollhouse, Boy Gets GirlSpinning Into Butter, Blue Surge, The Crowd You’re in With, The Glory of LivingThe Sweetest Swing in Baseball, and The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. Ms. Gilman is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, The Harold and Mimi Steinberg American Theatre Critics Association New Play Award, The Harper Lee Award, The Roger L. Stevens Award from the Kennedy Center Fund for New American Plays, The Evening Standard Award for Most Promising Playwright, The George Devine Award, an American Scandinavian Foundation Creative Writing Grant, and a Global Connections Grant by Theatre Communications Group. Boy Gets Girl received an Olivier nomination for Best New Play. Ms. Gilman was

 

named a finalist for the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for The Glory of Living. In 2016, Ms. Gilman was inducted into the Alabama Writers Hall of Fame. She is an artistic associate at the Goodman Theatre and a professor of playwriting at Northwestern University. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of the ACLU of Illinois. Her newest play, Twilight Bowl, will premiere at the Goodman in February of 2019.

COMMITTEES: Education

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