Tag Archives: Valerie Curtis-Newton

Artist Activist Valerie Curtis-Newton Holds Sacred the Communion of Theater

by Beverly Aarons

Theater is a communion, a space where difficult but important conversations take place between a diversity of people holding sometimes radically different viewpoints. It’s this paradigm that has driven Valerie Curtis-Newton to walk her journey as an artist-activist, theatre director, instructor, and co-founder and Artistic Director of the Hansberry Project. And it’s what keeps her going even as theater’s future is threatened by the pandemic and government restrictions that have left many theatre companies shuttered and stages dark. But no matter what form theater takes next or at least temporarily, Curtis-Newton plans to continue supporting Black theater artists through the Hansberry Project. Continue reading Artist Activist Valerie Curtis-Newton Holds Sacred the Communion of Theater

Neighborhood Artist Spotlight: Valerie Curtis-Newton

by Lola E. Peters

 When Valerie Curtis-Newton and her partner, now wife, Kim Powell moved to South Seattle’s Hillman City neighborhood in 1998, the New York Times refused to deliver their Sunday edition to homes on the Beacon Hill side of Rainier Avenue South. Much has changed in the neighborhood since. Curtis-Newton says she can even get food delivered to their home now.

Much has also changed in Curtis-Newton’s relationship to Seattle’s theater world. She is now Professor, Head of Performance, Directing, Acting at the University of Washington’s School of Drama. In 2006, she and Vivian Phillips founded the Hansberry Project to bring theater written by and about African Americans to Seattle. Continue reading Neighborhood Artist Spotlight: Valerie Curtis-Newton