Staceyann is the author of a widely-praised memoir, The Other Side of Paradise. She is a proud Jamaican, who, in her appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show, spoke candidly about her experiences of growing up on the island and the dire consequences of her coming out there. In New York City, she is well known as a co-writer of the Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam and an original cast member of the Tony Award winning Broadway production. Her poetry has received rousing cheers at the Nuyorican Poets' Café, and her three one-woman shows at the Culture Project in New York City, Hands Afire, Unspeakable Things, and Border/Clash, all opened to rave reviews. Chin has led writing workshops in Sweden, South Africa, and Australia. She is a recipient of the Power of the Voice Award from the Human Rights Campaign (2007), the Safe Haven Award from Immigration Equality and Honors from the Lesbian AIDS Project (both 2008), and a 2009 award from the New York State Senate. She unapologetically identifies as Caribbean and black, Asian and lesbian, woman and resident of New York City.
The New Screen: Narrative Filmmaking
Gregg Lachow has been making films—features, shorts, poetic, and otherwise—for 25 years. He is currently working on two projects: an experimental feature I Who Was at Gettysburg, which should be completed by summer 2014, and an as-yet untitled "performed film" (a feature film in which all dialogue, sound effects, and music are performed live) scheduled to premiere in Seattle in fall 2014 and then travel to Los Angeles and New York. In addition to his own work, Lachow has produced films by directors Lynn Shelton and Guy Maddin.
In the Moment: Acting for Screen
Talia Lugacy, filmmaker, writer, and actor, is the writer/director of the 2008 independent feature Descent, starring Rosario Dawson, which was theatrically released by Warner Independent after premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival to critical raves from the New York Times and Entertainment Weekly. In 2007, she began a partnership with Tom Noonan's Paradise Factory theater, which for 30 years has produced original film and theater, such as the award-winning What Happened Was . . . . (Sundance Grand Jury Prize). Their collaborative work and creative approaches to acting and writing earned them a five million dollar grant from New York City to revamp their East Village theater and studio. Lugacy is also the writer and director of TV commercials, most notably an ad made with Mark Ruffalo for Water Defense, an initiative to ban hydro-fracking for natural gas, which aired on the Colbert Report before going viral. Lugacy currently has three feature films in development. She is a member of the Actors Studio's Playwrights/Directors Unit and a member of the faculty of the School of Visual Arts.
The Digital Work Notebook
Trebor Scholz, associate professor of Culture and Media at The New School, is the editor of Digital Labor: The Internet as Factory and Playground (Routledge, 2013). He is a catalyst, educator, and cross-disciplinary writer whose work examines cultural, political, legal, and philosophical implications of the Internet, especially digital work, self-organized learning, and social activism. He has chaired seven major international conferences, including MobilityShifts and Internet as Playground and Factory, and is the founding chair of the Politics of Digital Culture conference series at The New School. In 2011, Scholz and Laura Y. Liu co-authored From Mobile Playgrounds to Sweatshop City, and he is currently completing a manuscript in which he gives faces to emerging digital labor practices and calls for new concepts and interventions. He led the startup and maintains the online discussion forum of the Institute for Distributed Creativity and is a frequent speaker at venues worldwide. Scholz is the editor of several collections of essays including Learning Through Digital Media (iDC, 2011; with Geert Lovink), The Art of Free Cooperation (Autonomedia, 2007), and, with O. Khan and M. Shepard, Situated Technologies, a series published by the Architectural League of New York. His solo and collaborative work has been exhibited at PS1/MOMA and the Venice and Sao Paolo biennials.
Caveh Zahedi (co-instructor)
The New Screen: Directing the Mise-en-Scène
Caveh Zahedi, an assistant professor of culture and media at The New School, has gained a reputation for his self-reflexive and sometimes controversial approach to filmmaking. His most recent film, The Sheik and I, was banned in the United Arab Emirates but ranked first at SXSW by Film Comment. His previous feature, I Am a Sex Addict, won the 2005 Gotham Award for Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You. His other films include In the Bathtub of the World, I Don't Hate Las Vegas Anymore (winner of the Critics' Prize at the 1994 Rotterdam Film Festival), and A Little Stiff, which premiered at Sundance in 1991.