S2 E4: Ribbon Their Stories Though Your Hair feat. Jessica Rich

Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
S2 E4: Ribbon Their Stories Though Your Hair feat. Jessica Rich
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“Jessica Rich is a seasoned veteran of Community Profile, having found herself, time and again, through her own unique intersectionality, identifying as a member of three of our different cohorts. As a mom, a musician and a writer, Jess has been a creative in all of her life, and the poetry she shares here is only one (potent) sliver of that creativity.”

Jessica Rich is a writer and student in Portland, Oregon. Her work has been featured in journals and anthologies here and there, most recently in The Gravity of the Thing  and Existere Literary Journal. Rich has performed her work across the country, in bookstores, bars, laundromats and on buses. She is currently studying concurrent degrees in Psychology and Creative Writing with a focus on Nonfiction at Portland State University. Her proudest work, though, is the creative workshops she’s coordinated over the years, currently with a local mental health organization. She lives in typical Portland fashion, in a basement apartment with two cats in her cave and a Treasure Troll upstairs.

S2 E3 Come In and Be Seen feat. Anya Pearson

Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
S2 E3 Come In and Be Seen feat. Anya Pearson
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“Anya Pearson is one of the truly up-and-coming writers of the Portland literary scene. She’s a playwright, a novelist, a poet and a screenwriter. Her writing is intensely personal, intimate and soulful.”

Anya Pearson is an award-winning actress, playwright, poet, producer, activist, and teacher. She is a current Hodder Fellow at Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts. Anya was the inaugural winner of the $10,000 Voice is a Muscle Grant from the Corporeal Voices Foundation run by best-selling author Lidia Yuknavitch, for her choreopoem, Made to Dance in Burning Buildings. Made to Dance in Burning Buildings was showcased at Joe’s Pub at The Public Theater and received its World Premiere at Shaking The Tree Theatre where Anya was the Playwright-in-Residence for the 2018-2019 season. Anya received the $10,000 Problem Play Commission to adapt Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure focused on mass incarceration and the other numerous failings of our criminal justice system. Her adaptation, The Measure of Innocence, was selected for the 2020 Kilroys List and won the 2020 Drammy Award for Best Original Script. The Measure of Innocence was a finalist for the Oregon Book Award – Drama. Anya was a finalist for the 2020 George A. and Eliza Gardner Howard Foundation Fellowship in Playwriting and the National Black Theatre’s 2019 I Am Soul Playwriting Residency. She is currently under commission at Portland Center Stage. Her reimagining of Agamemnon, The Killing Fields, was developed at Seven Devils New Play Foundry and is currently at the Great Plains Theatre Conference. Anya’s Three Love Songs, a short play about life during the pandemic, originally commissioned by Portland Center Stage as part of the Play At Home Initiative, was called a “masterpiece that emerged out of the wreckage of 2020” by Willamette Week in their 2020 best of theatre review. Three Love Songs has been performed all over the country including Wolly Mammoth Theatre’s Connectivity Initiative and will be housed at the Library of Congress in their Performing Arts Covid-19 Response Collection. Her spoken word protest poem “What it IS and What it ISN’T” was featured in a community conversation between Dr. Ibram X. Kendi and Portland City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty in October. Anya runs a multimedia production company called Urban Haiku whose mission is to produce groundbreaking work that transcends the traditional boundaries of performance while also serving as the catalyst for art and community action to combine for real social change. She is the Curator of Programming at Corporeal Writing where she also runs a BIPOC mentorship program and collective aimed at increasing accessibility and creative exchange between emerging BIPOC writers in all disciplines and established BIPOC writers who are successfully navigating the literary and entertainment industries. Anya is finishing her debut collection of poetry (“This is the After”), writing three pilots, launching a BIPOC-owned, PDX-based wearable art clothing label, and constantly plotting, planning, devising, creating, imagining, and revising visions of a better world. She is also a Guest Artist at Portland Center Stage where she teaches local high school students in their Visions & Voices program and adults in a BIPOC affinity space. As an actor, she is a member of Actors’ Equity Association and has appeared in numerous regional theatre productions, commercials, and independent films. She is also a member of Linestorm Playwrights, Couch Film Collective, and the Dramatists Guild. Anya is a graduate of the acting program at William Esper Studio in New York City and continues to train at AMAW in Los Angeles. She is a graduate of the writing program at Marylhurst University. Her best production is her 9-year-old daughter, Aidee, who can be seen most nights, trying to circumvent bedtime by asking deep philosophical questions like: “When are we going to see the world? When is my life going to truly begin?” 

S2 E2: KISS TO SAY HELLO, FEAT. PAUL BRIGHT

Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
S2 E2: KISS TO SAY HELLO, FEAT. PAUL BRIGHT
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Paul Bright is a writer/actor/filmmaker who left Hollywood because it was too homophobic. Now he’s making art that is not here to coddle straight sensibilities. He’s upfront, in-your-face, poignant and often hilarious. But there is also a depth of experience and loss that informs his work and gives it its weight.

Paul Bright wrote/directed/produced eleven feature films. He began writing short plays as a little kid, and his first feature film script led to meetings at Disney Studios in his early 20s. He left homophobic Hollywood in the 80s searching for a place to belong in Reno, Albuquerque, Tempe, Dallas, Austin, New York City and now calls Portland his home. In this podcast he shares a short comical scene from his most recent movie POCKET MOUSE PROTECTOR, which is now in post-production, and two other pieces about living gay. He records audiobooks for Audible, streams raucous social commentary online from his bathtub, and teaches indie filmmaking to over 3600 students on the Udemy platform. The official website for his movies is paulbrightfilms.com

S2 E1: DECIDEDLY UNLADYLIKE, feat. Donna Renee Anderson, MHR, ThM

Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
S2 E1: DECIDEDLY UNLADYLIKE, feat. Donna Renee Anderson, MHR, ThM
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“I’m a third-culture person, growing up with a military father and Guyanese mother in cultures other than my own. In 65+ years of living I’ve criss-crossed our country and the Pacific Rim living among and experiencing different cultures of our world. Since I was 12, all I’ve ever wanted is to write a good book; still do.”

ARTIST BIO
Donna Renee Anderson is an adventurer, lover, humorist, truth-teller, storyteller, and a spirit-uplifter. She’s the kind of person who manages to give of herself profusely while leaving space to take care of everybody else in the group. All that and she’s a heck of a writer too. 

Episode 6: Orbiting The Oldest Profession

Satellite: Beyond The Page
Satellite: Beyond The Page
Episode 6: Orbiting The Oldest Profession







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Episode 15: Leslie North: The Weight of Her Decision

Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Episode 15: Leslie North: The Weight of Her Decision
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“Leslie North is as warm and generous-spirited a young woman as you are likely to meet. Sometimes funny, sometimes thoughtful, sometimes dark, she’s always just to the left of what you’d expect.” -Bobby Bermea

ARTIST BIO
Leslie is a Memphis native who left a cushy job in the IT world to study at the Portland Actors Conservatory. Now living in Atlanta, Leslie is dipping her toes into the film world. She has already written a short film, Time Sensitive, as part of the BLVCK Film Collective in Portland. Next to acting, her current focus is rediscovering her voice as a writer through comedy sketches, pilots and other original shorts. Leslie is very passionate about telling authentic, relatable stories that represent the unheard and the ‘regular folks’. When she isn’t succumbing to the post-Covid pressure to constantly create, Leslie can be found binge watching her favorite shows, reading, or complaining about dating apps. 

Episode 14: Tess Raunig: I Am More Than The Shape Of My Body

Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Episode 14: Tess Raunig: I Am More Than The Shape Of My Body
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“To some, Tess Raunig may live at the intersection of many identities but to their mind, there’s only one: Tess Raunig. Tess is on a mission to break down every myth, every misconception, every lie and every injustice that is an obstacle to any body being their best self. This fire is red hot and a dominant aspect of their words, writing and music.” -Bobby Bermea

ARTIST BIO 
Tess Raunig (they/them/theirs) is a disabled, trans multidisciplinary creative and performer based in Portland, OR. They wish to thank Profile Theatre for both featuring them on Voices from The Real World, and for sponsoring and organizing the LGBTIQ+ writing cohort. As an actor, have worked with companies such as Artists Repertory Theatre (Teenage Dick, Mercury Company II and III), Oregon Children’s Theatre (Dragons Love Tacos), Bag & Baggage Productions (Sequestered Soliloquies), Couch Film Collective (Again and Again), Adventuress Films, Oyster Shell Productions, the Disability Art and Culture Project, and Impetus Arts. They are also a junior associate artist with Original Practice Shakespeare Festival. In August 2019, they starred in the world premier of The Poet’s Shadow, a rock opera written by students at PHAME Academy, in partnership with Portland, OR. Tess serves as a teaching artist, and choral assistant at PHAME.

They sing and play keyboard/synth in the Portland based theatrical folk pop band, Sasha and The Children. Tess is also a member of Acchord, an a’capella group comprised of trans and non-binary singers.  When they aren’t acting, writing, playing music, or teaching, Tess enjoys drinking tea, social justice activism, and hanging out with their cat child, Sasha. And yes, the band is named after Sasha kitty. linktr.ee/tessraunig

Episode 13: Brave Zamogogo: Give Me A New Face So I Can Love You

Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Episode 13: Brave Zamogogo: Give Me A New Face So I Can Love You
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“Brave Zamogogo(Sohacki) is a warm, charming, fluid individual and their writing reveals an eye for vivid imagery and a generosity of spirit for the human condition.” -Bobby Bermea

ARTIST BIO  
Brave identifies as a Queer Latinx non-binary collaborative ceremonialist. They thank their ancestors and all their relations for their life and happiness. Their writings are inspired by the magic of connection between the human, non human, and place. Recently, their piece I Trust Her debuted in Bag and Baggage’s Sequestered Soliloquies, they first acted on the stage of Defunkt Theatre in 2018’s production of Slipping by Daniel Talbot, and are currently an ensemble member with The Actors Conservatory at Artists Rep in Portland, OR.

Episode 12: Greg Berman: All The Animals of the Kingdom

Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Episode 12: Greg Berman: All The Animals of the Kingdom
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“Much of Greg Berman’s writing centers around mental health because that is the field in which he has spent much of his life. Today, Greg is a professional psychiatrist who also brings his life experience and insight to the page with intelligence, courage and vivacity.” -Bobby Bermea

ARTIST BIO
Greg Berman received his MFA in dramatic writing at Lesley University. He is a
private practice psychiatrist in Portland, Oregon and is interested in the
intersection of creativity and mental health. His ten-minute play Hope and
Change
 appeared in Being Human a Playwright Showcase, by Scribe Stages at
Moving Arts Theater in Los Angeles, CA, November, 2017. His play Bartow
was inspired by the art of Rick Bartow and his ability to make art after a stroke, it received a reading in the Dramatists Guild footlight series last summer.

Episode 11: Roberta Hunte: I Feel Rage

Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Community Profile: Voices From The Real World
Episode 11: Roberta Hunte: I Feel Rage
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“Roberta Hunte is an educator and a difference maker. Everybody who meets her, remembers her and she just might be the smartest person to ever be on Voices from the Real World. In this podcast she writes about a harrowing, heartbreaking moment from her own life — and you get to meet her son, Paris!” -Bobby Bermea 

ARTIST BIO
Roberta Hunte, Ph.D., MS  is  a Black Feminist scholar, mother, facilitator, and cultural worker. She is an Assistant Professor at Portland State’s School of Social Work and is an affiliate faculty in Black Studies and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. With playwright Bonnie Ratner she co-wrote and produced the theatre piece My Walk Has Never Been Average based on her dissertation research on narratives of Black tradeswomen. She was the Executive Producer for the narrative short film “Sista in the Brotherhood” written and directed by Dawn Jones Redstone. She and Dr. Catherine Duffly devised and produced the theatre piece We are Brave about people of color and reproductive justice. Her research areas of focus include reproductive justice, women of color feminisms, and cultural work for social change. She is particularly interested in how people of color talk about their lived experiences with systems of oppression coupled with their survival strategies and their recommendations for equity;  areas of focus include Black perinatal health and racism related stress, higher education access for adult learners, and Black tradeswomen in construction.