Last year, Moisés Kaufman, award winning theater director, playwright, and Artistic Director of Tectonic Theater Project, discussed the role theater plays in this time of tremendous technological innovation, information sharing, and the proliferation of human connection across the globe. Kaufman is a Tony and Emmy nominated director and playwright. He most recently directed a critically lauded production of Bent at the Mark Taper Forum, as well as Daniel Beatty’s The Tallest Tree in the Forest at Kansas City Rep, La Jolla Playhouse, Arena Stage, and BAM. Broadway credits include The Heiress, 33 Variations (which he also wrote); Rajiv Joseph’s Pulitzer Prize finalist Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo; the Pulitzer and Tony Award-winning play I Am My Own Wife. His plays Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde and The Laramie Project (which he wrote with the members of Tectonic Theater) are among the most performed plays in America over the last decade. He also co-wrote and directed the film adaptation of The Laramie Project for HBO. He is currently directing and writing a new Broadway-bound Afro-Cuban adaptation of Bizet’s Carmenfor which he’s collaborating with Grammy-winning composer Arturo O’Farrill and Tony-winning composer-lyricist Jason Robert Brown. Moisés was recently honored by President Obama as a recipient of the National Arts Medal. He and his husband Jeffrey LaHoste founded Tectonic Theater Project in 1991. In 2017, Random House will publish a long anticipated treatise on the company’s trademarked method of theater making, Moment Work, written by Kaufman, Barb Pitts-McAdams, and members of the company.
The year prior, LREI hosted the following Speaker Series: Race, Housing and Court-ordered Justice in Yonkers: A Father/Son Conversation with Paul Haggis and James Haggis '16.
Award-winning director, screenwriter, and producer Paul Haggis directed HBO's Show Me a Hero
. The mini-series, which premiered last summer, chronicles the events surrounding desegregation and the development of low-income housing in the city of Yonkers in the late 1980s. In 2006, Haggis became the first screenwriter to write two Best Film Oscar winners back-to-back for Million Dollar Baby
(2004), directed by Clint Eastwood, and Crash
(2004), which he himself directed. For Crash
, he won Oscars for Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay.