Being Bold: A Look at Censorship of the Past, Present, Future

Thursday, June 8 | 2pm – 3:15pm

MK Wegmann (Moderator)

MK Wegmann has 40+ years of experience in presenting and producing for non-profit visual and performing arts organizations. She is the recently retired President and CEO of the National Performance Network, which she led for 16 years in its support of national and international touring and commissioning. As an independent consultant, she works with artist-focused organizations in the performing and visual arts fields. Her presenting experience includes 14 years at the Contemporary Arts Center in New Orleans and six years as Managing Director of Junebug Productions. She is one of the founders of the Louisiana Presenters Network, a past Board Chair of Alternate ROOTS, and has served on Panels for the National Endowment for the Arts, the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Mississippi Arts Commission, and others. Among her consulting clients are Chamber Music America’s Rural Residency program, Urban Bush Women, and the Alabama Dance Council. MK serves on Boards of Directors for the Creative Alliance of New Orleans (CANO) and Junebug Productions. A native of New Orleans, she has been active in its recovery from the disasters of 2005.

Rosemary Johnson (Speaker)

Rosemary W. Johnson is Executive Director of the Alabama Dance Council, a statewide dance service organization working in partnership with the Alabama State Council on the Arts. Dr. Johnson has a 25-year history as a performing arts presenter – 10 years as a multidisciplinary presenter and 15 years as a dance presenter and producer of the Alabama Dance Festival. She is currently serving as the lead consultant/facilitator for the South Arts' Dance Touring Initiative, a three-year program offering professional development and block-booking opportunities to dance presenters in the Southeast. Dr. Johnson is past Chair of the Service Organization Council for Dance/USA and currently serves on the Dance/USA Board of Trustees as a Vice-Chair and Chair of the Trustees Committee. She serves as board chair and managing director for Southern Danceworks, Alabama’s oldest professional modern dance company. She has served on the Board of Trustees for the Alabama School of Fine Arts and as administrative consultant for the Alabama Ballet. She was a participant in the 2004 Leadership Forum at Jacob’s Pillow and regularly attends the National Performance Network’s Annual Meeting as a colleague. Dr. Johnson was recipient of the 2004 Artist Fellowship in Arts Administration from the Alabama State Council on the Arts, and has served on the NEA’s grant review panel for dance, and on grant panels for South Arts, Alabama State Council on the Arts, and 3Arts in Chicago.

In addition to her arts administration experience, Dr. Johnson is a professional music educator and performer with a Doctor of Musical Arts in piano performance. Before coming to the Alabama Dance Council in 2002, Dr. Johnson served as Fine Arts Director and music instructor at Wallace Community College in Selma, Alabama. After opening a new theatre at the college in 1992, she founded WCCSpresents, a multi-disciplinary season of artist residency programs that promoted arts education and community arts development. She was selected in 1998 as a host coordinator for one of eight national sites in Chamber Music America’s Chamber Music Rural Residencies Program, which placed talented, emerging artists in rural communities for nine-month residencies for three consecutive years.

Indira Goodwine (Speaker)

Born and raised in Queens, NY, Indira Goodwine is an arts administrator committed to using art as a form of activism to educate, inspire and service diverse communities. Her professional career in arts administration began at Harlem Stage where she worked in both programming and general management. During that time, she also served as the Company Manager for Camille A. Brown & Dancers and in August 2016 transitioned into the role of Managing Director. Indira is a 2016 NYCT Fellow and has participated in other notable programs such as the American Express Leadership Academy and Dance/USA’s DILT Program. She has also been a speaker for Next Generation National Arts Network and Dance/USA’s Annual Conference. As a performer, Indira has had the opportunity to perform works by Camille A. Brown, Earl Mosley, Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, Millicent Johnnie, Toni Renee Johnson, Shani Collins-Achille, Shouze Ma, Tamara LaDonna Williams, and Troy Powell, among others. Indira received her M.A. in Performing Arts Administration from New York University and a B.F.A. in Dance Performance from The Florida State University where she graduated Magna Cum Laude.

Kristopher McDowell (Speaker)

Kristopher McDowell is the Founder and CEO of KMP Artists. He spends much of his time traveling to discover new opportunities for international cultural exchange with an emphasis on performing arts in Asia Pacific and North America. He is also a Partner and Co-Founder of KMP China; KMP Latin; and MyKA ~ Your Cultural Connection to Southeast Asia.

McDowell began his career at seven years old as a performing artist working in musical theatre, contemporary dance and in his early twenties released a solo album and became a well known artist within the cabaret community in New York City. Since 2004, McDowell has served the live performing arts industry as a talent manager, producer and arts consultant for artists, performing arts companies, music and dance festivals, as well as concert events. Prior to starting KMP, he served as a programming director for a non-profit music series for six years in California. Mr. McDowell has promoted or produced nearly a thousand performing arts events worldwide.

Additionally, McDowell is an experienced instructor in performance and arts management. For over four years Kristopher was a faculty member of the American Musical and Dramatic Academy Los Angeles (Bachelor of Fine Arts Program); and he continues to present workshops and lectures at festivals and conferences around the globe. Among his many valued affiliations with leading arts organizations around the globe, McDowell is a member in good standing of Dance USA; World Dance Alliance; International Consortium for Advancement in Choreography; International Association of Blacks in Dance (IABD); International Society for Performing Arts (ISPA); Western Arts Alliance (WAA); Association of Performing Arts Presenters (APAP); North American Performing Arts Managers and Agents (NAPAMA); and Americans for the Arts. McDowell also serves on the Board of Trustees for Dance USA as the Council Chair for Agents & Artist Representatives. He is also on the Advisory Board of Dallas Chamber Symphony.

In his early career, McDowell trained as a dancer in the scholarship program at Broadway Dance Center New York City and studied musical theater and dance at the American Music and Dramatic Academy (NYC campus). He then received his formal education at Empire State College and Fordham University at Lincoln Center.

Douglas Sonntag (Speaker)

Douglas C. Sonntag has worked for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) since 1986. At the NEA, he has served as a dance program specialist, administrator and from 1997 to 2017 as the director of dance where he oversaw the review of thousands of applications from dance companies, presenters, service organizations and archives. In addition, Sonntag has served the NEA as the director of performing arts, the director of the Creativity Connects initiative, and as the project manager for the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act grants that awarded $50,000,000 in federal stimulus funds to arts organizations across the United States. From 2004-2008, he also served as the director of the NEA's Office of National Initiatives where he oversaw such projects as the Dance Critics Conference, which expanded to include music and theater critics, American Masterpieces, Shakespeare in American Communities, Operation Homecoming, and Save America's Treasures. To celebrate the millennium he designed a project that would become the National College Choreography Initiative that was administered by Dance/USA.

Prior to his tenure at NEA, Sonntag was general manager of the Repertory Dance Theatre in Salt Lake City, Utah. In addition, he was an associate instructor for the University of Utah's Institute of Arts Administration and a staff specialist for the Department of Ballet. In addition, Sonntag was the project director of the Utah Playwriting Conference, a joint project of the Sundance Institute and the Utah Arts Council. Sonntag attended the American College in Paris and the University of Utah graduating with a B.F.A. in Ballet and an M.F.A. in Theater with an emphasis in arts administration. He has served as a judge for the American College Dance Festival Association and as a panelist for the Utah Arts Council, the Jerome Foundation, the Carlisle Project, and the Vilcek Foundation. He has spoken at and served on panels for the Monaco Dance Forum; International Tanzmesse in Düsseldorf, Germany; Dance/USA; Dance/NYC; Swedish Performing Arts Branch Conference in Karlstad, Sweden; and the Association of Performing Arts Presenters.