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June 4, 2016


HoUSe is an immersive, interactive exploration of what it means to make a place home. You are invited to enter an abandoned house on Governor’s Island – once a military barracks, banned by federal law from being inhabited since– in ways that evoke the process of entering the US. The house is filled with prompts and questions for you to respond to by making your mark - on walls, papers, and other materials – or choosing not to do so. HoUSe invites you to create and engage with the writing on the wall: To respond to it, erase it, or write your own – and in the process, to explore what it means to be(come) American.

Photography by Stephanie Orentas

Leila Buck is a Lebanese American playwright, actor, facilitator and educator. She has performed and developed her work at the Public Theater, New York Theatre Workshop, Culture Project, Brooklyn Museum, BRIC Arts, Cleveland Public Theatre, Mosaic Theater at Arena Stage, and the Wilma Theater (Barrymore Award), and in France, Spain, Finland, Denmark, Tunisia, Lebanon, and China. She is currently working on two commissions, for En Garde Arts and California Shakespeare Theatre. A State Dept Speaker Specialist and Cultural Envoy, she has lived, performed, and taught theatrical tools for literacy, conflict resolution, and intercultural engagement with NYTW and Lincoln Center and to youth, educators, aid workers, UN delegates, and others across the U.S., Europe, China, Australia, and 11 Arab countries. As artist-in-residence for Wesleyan University’s Doris Duke Foundation Building Bridges grant, she created interactive work about the (mis)representation of Muslims in the U.S., and received the Edgar Beckham Social Justice Award. Her work is featured in American Theatre; TCG’s Finding Home Essay Salon; Stages of Resistance (ed. Caridad Svich); Innovation in Five Acts; Etching Our Own Image: Voices from the Arab American Art Movement, and Four Arab-American Plays. She is a member of the Public Theater’s inaugural Emerging Writers Group, a Usual Suspect with New York Theatre Workshop, and teaches Participatory Performance and Civic Engagement and Writing Beyond Our Borders at NYU, from which she holds a Master’s in Theatre for Cross Cultural Education.

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