Past Performances

SELECT PAST APPEARANCES:

SHORT PLAYS ON REPRODUCTIVE FREEDOM

Now out in Paperback! $6.99

34 Short Plays and Performance Pieces on Reproductive Freedom! Abortion, contraception, pregnancy, parenting, being childfree, aging, accessing healthcare, sexual violence, political games, activism, projecting the future, dipping into history … wonderful, imaginative and creative plays, poetry, spoken word, performible art on reproductive freedom from a wide diversity of writers.

Cover ShortPlaysReproductiveFreedom final (2) rdx

Writers in this volume: Grisel Acosta, Judith Arcana, Marcy Arlin, Melissa Bell, Angela Bonavoglia, Stephen Cedars, Kitty Chen, Ellen Cohen, Cindy Cooper, Allie Costa, Marjorie Duffield, Jessica Feder-Birnbaum, Anne Flanagan, Nicole Goodwin, Yvette Heyliger, home│work Collective, Henry Howard, Michael angel Johnson, Mildred Lewis, Samantha Lierens, Jessica Litwak, Junita Middleton, Debbie Miller, Winter Miller, Alix Olson, Marge Piercy, Jeremy Rishe, Mercedes Sanchez, Laura A. Shamas, Laura Zlatos

Read a short description of each piece

Read more about the Reproductive Freedom Festival

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Reproductive Freedom Walking Tours

With Social Justice Tours

RFWTbusinesscard

We’ve joined with Social Justice Tours to offer a tour on reproductive freedom and history in New York City with our Reproductive Freedom Walking Tour through Lower Manhattan.

SEE Social Justice Tours!

The 2019 season ended, but check back in the spring!

An Article: Taking the First — and Only — Reproduction Tour in America
by Leah Feiger

Read more! Join us!

10% of proceeds to New York Abortion Access Fund

Listen as WNYC’s Alejandro Salazar walks with us!

We did 20 walks from April to October in 2019!

Some comments:

“I had such a great time and learned a lot both on the tour and talking with you afterwards.”  

“I am really glad that I joined in this great tour to learn more about NYC and American histories on reproductive health and freedom. It is very knowledgeable, memorable and insightful. I am inspired by those brave women who fight for women’s rights. No matter how hard it is we should not give up.”

“Thank you very much for the wonderful tour.”

“What a great tour!! Thank you for this informative tour of Reproductive Freedom in Lower Manhattan. While this will always be an important tour, the timing of it is perfect, given what recently happened in Alabama. [Our tour guide] was lovely and so knowledgeable about the fight for reproductive health and justice. She does an awesome job in connecting the past and the present. Also, 10% of the payment for the tour goes to the New York Abortion Access Fund. This is a highly recommended tour!”

“Thank you for the powerful tour! Great meeting and learning, and inspiring the impressive group of people who assembled yesterday.”

Thanks again for a great afternoon and tour!

Thank you for the information and thank you for the inspiring and thoughtfully organized tour. Yes, let’s keep moving forward.

Read a blog about the Walking Tours.

photo by leah feiger

pic by Leah Feiger

Coming from Massachusetts to walk with us in New York!
group oct 3

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RECENT:

BOOK LAUNCH: Sept 20, 2019 7 pm

SHORT PLAYS ON REPRODUCTIVE FREEDOM

Bluestockings Books, NYC
Celebrating Reproductive Health, Rights, Justice and Freedom with our words!

Artists and Writers Read, featuring: Grisel Acosta, writer; Alinca Hamilton, actor; Yvette Heyliger, writer/actor; Carl Jaynes, actor; Stacey Linnartz, actor/co-editor
Cassandra Nwokah, actor

directed by Francesca Mantani Arkus
host Cindy Cooper, editor

Read bios of the readers!

If you missed the event, ORDER AT AMAZON

Read a short description of each piece

Read more about the Reproductive Freedom Festival

Book launch photos2b

Now on Instagram! @ReproFreedomArts

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REPRODUCTIVE FREEDOM IS WHAT WE WANT …!

Sunday, April 28, 2019
The People’s Forum
ReproductiveFreedom boot announcmt320 W. 37th Street, NYC

Featuring Alinca Hamilton, Donna Jean Fogel, Carl H. Jaynes, directed by Francesca Mantani Arkus

Performance followed by a discussion with Farah Diaz-Tello, a leading attorney on reproductive justice working with If, When, How, and Lanai Daniels with the New York Abortion Access Fund.

words actors rv4 2018-19

An inspiring collection of writings on reproductive freedom and justice, including works by June Jordan, Justice Harry Blackmun and Sally Blackmun, Judith Arcana, Angela Bonavoglia, Esosa Edosomwan, Kathy Najimy and Mo Gaffney, Allie Costa, Michael David Quinn, Cindy Cooper, Living Newspaper Project, Mary Ann Sorrentino, Feminist Health Network,  Zoneziwoh Mbondgulo-Wondieh and more. Created by Cindy Cooper.

See the full program on our blog.

Listen to WBAI’s Joy of Resistance.

100% of proceeds will be donated to New York Abortion Access Fund.

the peoples forum logo

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Ridgewood, NJ
Reproductive Freedom is What We Want!
Featuring Alinca Hamilton, Donna Jean Fogel, Carl H. Jaynes
directed by Francesca Mantani Arkus

Sunday, January 13, 2019
Unitarian Society of Ridgewood

Dr. Lynn Roberts, a co-founder of SisterSong Women of Color Reproductive Justice Network, and editor of Radical Reproductive Justice

Sponsored by Reproductive Justice Committee, Unitarian Society of Ridgewood; New Jersey NOW, Northern New Jersey Chapter; and National Council of Jewish Women, Essex County Chapter

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Our New Anthology!

Short Plays on Reproductive Freedom

34 short plays and performance pieces about reproductive health, rights, freedom and justice.

Cover ShortPlaysReproductiveFreedom final (2) rdx

Paperback Release! — $6.99

E book — $2.99 or less!
Amazon Kindle
Google Play
Barnes and Noble Nook

See Publication: 34 Short Plays on Reproductive Freedom

Read More: Now Out SHORT PLAYS ON REPRODUCTIVE FREEDOM
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WORDS OF CHOICE on DVD has been re-issued for Live Streaming or purchase through International Film Network (IFN)

See more here.woc_dvd_label.jpg.w180h180

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LIVING NEWSPAPER WOMEN’S* EDITION
Residency: Governor’s Island, NYC, September 2018
Work-in-progress performances 

living news pic

Intersectional topics related to health, justice, freedom in a devised theater project

with

Ego Actus Theatre (Joan Kane)

front porth by jclarke2Laboratorium Residency with Rising Sun Performance Company

Eight actors, four writers, one director: creating new works in a week-long residency experimenting with the Living Newspaper and concentrating on women’s* issues (women and women-identified).

rising sun site

Participating artists: actors Debra Khan-Bey, Katie Mack, Mary Monahan, Patty Talley, Lia Tamborra and Joan Valentina; writers Brigitte Barnett, Jessica Carmona, Cindy Cooper and Cassandra Medley. Joan Kane director.

Read more about this project here and here.

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Workshops: Creative Theatre and Arts, New York City

For women and mothers reintegrating with the community post-prison

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Live Radio Theater

LIVE RADIO PERFORMANCES ON SOUNDCLOUD!

with Julissa Roman, Claudia Schneider, Crista Marie Westley (pictured)
directed by Francesca Mantani Arkus 

with the International Women Artists Salon Radio and Heidi Russell 

1-Incantation by June Jordan  (all)
2- She said – before 1973 by Judith Arcana (all)
3-Nobody by Esosa Edosomwan (Crista)
4-Fine Line  (Julissa)
5-You’re On Your Own by Michael David Quinn  (all)
6-Parallel Lives by Kathy Najimy and Mo Gaffney, intro by Angela Bonavoglia (Claudia, Crista)
7-Siege by Susan Wicklund adapted by Cindy Cooper (Claudia)
8-Laws I Want by Words of Choice  (all)
9-Why I March by Zoneziwoh Mbondgulo-Wondieh  (all)

Read more 

Julissa RomanClaudia SchneiderCrista Marie Jackson Westley

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LIVE STREAMING REPRODUCTIVE FREEDOM THEATER FESTIVAL 

repro free fest fr stage jeremy

boot for ReprFreedomFestival

The first-ever Live and Live Streaming REPRODUCTIVE FREEDOM FESTIVAL March 20, 2016 
Live Streaming from NYC to 50 states and 10 countries

Read a wrap-up of the event.

Contact: reproductivefreedomfestival@gmail.com
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An Evening Showcase of Short Films & Videos
International Women Artists’ Salon and Hell’s Kitchen Short Film Fest 2016
“Reproductive Justice Tour”
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REPRODUCTIVE FREEDOM ON FIRE!
A Special 40 minute Performance!
The LEFT FORUM, NYC
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Featuring performers: Stacey Linnartz, Krystel Lucas
Claudia Schneider, 
directed by Francesca Mantani Arkus,
created by Cindy Cooper

Read more about Reproductive Freedom on Fire

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WBAI/Joy of Resistance Feminist Film Festival – Brooklyn
“Reproductive Justice Walking Tour” FILM plus Live Performance Excerpts with Stacey Linnartz!
Read more.

The International Women Artists Salon at Dixon Place in NYC

Screening with the UK Festival of Choice

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REPRODUCTIVE JUSTICE WALKING TOUR

Visit our Reproductive Justice Walking Tour site!
and see more on this page. See our video for a virtual walk! (Or to do your own!)

JUNE 7, 2014
NEW YORK CITY
An interactive event

Putting reproductive justice on the map in our lives, our history and our communities.

-A guided walk with a dozen performances through lower Manhattan
-A Roundup and Fair with interactive events, more performances and refreshments

Follow up Blog: Putting Reproductive Justice on the Map

SEE photos on Tumblr, here.

Reproductive Justice Walking Tour on Facebook!

Read more here.
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FOR INFORMATION ABOUT OUR Words of Choice SHOWS:

judson image

Contact:
wordsofchoice@mindspring.com

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Live Streaming!

LIVE STREAMING performances 2013 in the first-ever WiredArts Fest produced by VirtualArtsTV.

Wired Arts Fest

Read more here, here and here. (UPDATE, June 2013: The stream is ongoing at VirtualArtsTV, here.)

Local organizations coordinated house viewing parties. See the Viewing Party Packet here. And a Free Original Poster pdf or jpeg. Also available for downloading, A FREE APP; read more here.

Joining us for discussions: Amanda Marcotte, blogger at Pandagon, writer; Lori Adelman, a contributing editor at Feministing; Lynn Roberts, founding board member of SisterSong Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective; and award-winning filmmaker Marion Lipschutz.

Live Streaming Performance Featured:
Crista Marie Jackson, Carl H. Jaynes and Claudia Schneider
Under the direction of Francesca Mantani Arkus;
Stage Manager: Kelly Vieau;  Artistic Consultant: Stacey Linnartz;  Art by Heather Ault, 4000 Years for Choice;  Outreach and Marketing Director: Emma Shakarshy
Marketing and Public Relations Consultant: Ashley Paskalis;  Assistant, Marketing: Tiffany Colasuonno;  Producer: Cindy Cooper

See the Theater Program here.

Read about the first-ever WiredArtsFest on ABC here and Wall Street Journal here.

Words of Choice, Wired Arts Fest and Women — Works by Women blog.

There is No Such Thing as Traditional Activism by Ashley Paskalis — fem2pt0 blog

WOMEN ARTS: Join the Words of Choice Live Streaming Events Mar 1 & 2

Cindy Cooper on her Play, “Words of Choice,” Reproductive Justice and Body image in Adios Barbie

Read about Words of Choice in BUST Magazine

Words of Choice: Daily News Listings

See more details, here.

WiredArts WOC combo graphic to 7 pm on 3/31, and we’ll be LIVE!

Raleigh, NORTH CAROLINA, November 2013
Monologues from Words of Choice
Starring Reanna Roane, directed by Cameron Prevatte

Raleigh show

More: this blog post.

MARCH 1 & 2, 2013
New York City and Across the Internet via Live Streaming
with the first WiredArtsFest (produced by Virtual Arts TV).
LIVE at the Secret Theater in Queens.
LIVE STREAMING on UStream with interaction on Twitter (#woclive #wiredartsfest), IM, Facebook.
Performed by Crista Marie Jackson, Carl H. Jaynes, Claudia Schneider, directed by Francesca Mantani Arkus; Artistic Consultant, Stacey Linnartz; Stage Manager, Kelly Vieau. Art: Heather Ault.
Special guests discusscants: blogger Amanda Marcotte, Lori Adelman of Feministing; Lynn Roberts, founding board, SisterSong; filmmaker Marion Lipschutz.
Read more here and here.

JANUARY 18-20, 2013
Buffalo NY
Words of Choice: Roe40
Performed by the Brazen Faced Varlots
Directed by Kelly Beuth
FIRST TIME IN BUFFALO: Words of Choice 2
Part of proceeds to Planned Parenthood
Starring Kelly Beuth, Jane Cudmore, Paul McGinnis, Brittany Kucala, Ayondela Noble, Jennifer Arroyo, Jenny Gembka, Theresa DiMuro Wilber, Kerry Alsheimer and Toni Smith-Wilson.
See Listing in Buffalo News!
See Listing in Buffalo Art Voice

Thursday, JULY 19, 2012
Soho20Gallery, Chelsea, New York City
Excerpts, BACKLASH Art Exhibit and Opening
Performers Carl H. Jaynes, Abigail Ramsay and Claudia Schneider, under the direction of Francesca Mantani Arkus, present a ten-minute excerpt to celebrate the opening of the multi-artist BACKLASH at the Soho20 Gallery. Read more here. Meet the Cast here.

JUNE 30, 2012
NOW National Conference, Baltimore MD

Creativity & Reproductive Justice
Workshop, with Susan Elizabeth Davis
Read more here.

FEBRUARY 7, 2012
Ramapo College, Mahwah, New Jersey 

Featuring Leah Jacobs, Carl H. Jaynes & Claudia Schneider under the direction of Francesca Mantani Arkus

FEBRUARY 5, 2012

Ridgewood, New Jersey
Unitarian Society of Ridgewood

Featuring Leah Jacobs, Carl H. Jaynes & Claudia Schneider under the direction of Francesca Mantani Arkus; special guest poet Maame-Mensima Horne; with Olympia’s Daughters, a cappella singers

Click here to DOWNLOAD a flyer.

Sponsored by the Reproductive Justice Committee and Social Responsibilities Council of the Unitarian Society of Ridgewood, in partnership with the Ramapo College Women’s Center.

JANUARY 20, 21 and 22, 2012
Buffalo, New York

Words of Choice I as published in Frontlines
Produced and performed by The Brazen-Faced Varlets of Buffalo
Directed by Kelly M. Beuth
at Hallwalls Contemporary Art Center, Buffalo, New York
Production made possible by The Pro-Choice Foundation of Western New York, with support from Buffalo Womenservices; benefitting Planned Parenthood of Western New York.
Read more about the cast and company.
See the Buffalo flyer HERE!

JANUARY 18, 2012
Joy of Resistance RADIO, WBAI “Letters from Justice Blackmun” from “Words of Choice” WBAI.org

OCTOBER 16, 2011
Morristown Unitarian Fellowship
Morris Township, NJ

Featuring: Carl H. Jaynes, Stacey Linnartz, Krystel Lucas under the direction of Francesca Mantani Arkus

Also performing: the musical group, Olympia’s Daughters
Speaker: The Rev. Alison Miller, minister, Morristown Unitarian Fellowship

JULY 31, 2011
Summer of Trust and Summer of Choice.
Germantown/Gaithersburg, Maryland
Read on our BLOG.
Featuring a special New York cast including Carl H. Jaynes, Stacey Linnartz and Krystel Lucas under the direction of Francesca Mantani Arkus.

Joined with a special display of artworks by pro-choice activist Heather Ault, 4,000 Years for Choice. Discussion with Heather Ault, and Maryland prochoice activists Neda Bolourian and Lily Bolourian. Capping the Walk for Choice at Germantown Clinic, supporting Dr. LeRoy Carhart.

MARCH 21, 2011
MU Social Justice Performers
Directed by Heather Carver, Elaine Lawless
& others
Museum of Art and Archeology Auditorium
Followed by a discussion with Cindy Cooper
University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

The appearances below feature actors Crista Marie Jackson, Carl H. Jaynes, Claudia Schneider, stage manager Kelly Vieau, and director Francesca Mantani Arkus, unless otherwise noted.

FEB 13, 2011
Choice & Love, Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Montclair
Live performance & Activist Fair

Speaker: NJ State Senator & Majority Leader Barbara Buono
Special guest, Maggie Reed
NJ Star Ledger

JAN 22, 2011

Roe v. Wade Anniversary: Words of Choice EXCERPTS: “Letters to Justice Blackmun” and Collective audience Poem, featuring Carl H. Jaynes, Abigail Ramsay and Claudia Schneider

Our Post-Event Blog

Event of NJ Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice & NJ Abortion Access Fund at the First Unitarian Society of Plainfield, Plainfield NJ

OCT 22, 2010

Reception, Performance, Discussion
Center for Creative Education
Kingston NY
Sponsored by Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley and Ulster YWCA

OCT 11, 2010

Reception, Performance, Discussion
Student Activities Center (SAC), Ballroom B
Stony Brook University, NY
Sponsored by Planned Parenthood Hudson Peconic and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority

MAY 2, 2010
New York City
Fundraiser for New York Abortion Access Fund (NYAAF)
CHOW Bar Events Room, Greenwich Village
Featuring Crista Marie Jackson, Carl H. Jaynes, Claudia Schneider, directed byFrancesca Mantani Arkus, stg mgr Kelly Vieau; created by Cindy Cooper

APRIL 25, 2010
First Amnesty Human Rights Art Festival
Silver Spring, Maryland
See WebWire Release
Montgomery College (Takoma/Silver Spring) HC 122
Discussion: Jill Morrison, Senior Counsel, Health and Reproductive Rights at the National Women’s Law Center and Claire Moses, Editorial Director of the journal Feminist Studies and Professor in the Department of Women’s Studies at the University of Maryland, moderator Regina Oldak, Board Member, Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan Washington, founder of the Maryland Coalition for Emergency Contraception, past president of the Montgomery County Commission for Women and Senior Counsel, NWLC.

APRIL 25, 2010
Words of Choice Creativity Workshop
Pyramid Atlantic Art Center
Silver Spring, MD
Artists and writers from ‘Words of Choice’ with guest Angie YoungThe Coat Hanger Project.

APRIL 24, 2010
Virginia NOW State Conference
James Madison University
Harrisonburg, VA

APRIL 23, 2010
Benefit, DC Abortion Fund (DCAF)
True Redeemer Bldg. on U Street
Washington, DC

OCTOBER 30 2009 Troy, NY
Frontlines of Choice: Book, Play Excerpts, Audience Workshop
Sanctuary for Independent Media, with Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood; Featuring Alexis Greene,editor, FRONTLINES; Actors: Claudia Schneider, Abigail Ramsay; Cindy Cooper

OCTOBER 14, NYC
NARAL Pro Choice America Honors Words of Choice with the 2009 Anne E. Fisher Champion of Choice Award to Cindy Cooper, creator of Words of Choice.

AUGUST 13, 2010
WBAI, Joy of Resistance, Excerpts

JUNE 29, 2010
Live Radio Performance: WBAI, New York, 95.5
Joy of Resistance, hosted by Fran Luck: Carl H. Jaynes, Crista Maria Jackson, Claudia Schneider, directed by Francesca Mantani Arkus, and discussions withCindy Cooper, guest artist Marilyn Torres

JUNE 8, 2010
Book Launch — Front Lines: Political Plays by American Women
ed by Alexis Greene and Shirley Lauro
including Words of Choice I
at The Women’s Project, New York City

APRIL 23, 2009
A Benefit for Planned Parenthood of New York City
at Historic Judson Memorial Church

Click here to view posters and materials from previous performances.

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