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How can we foster the best environments for intellectual inquiry and artistic expression? Join us as our guests discuss and share ways to think about Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in artistic collaboration.

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View Session B in your time zone

Register for Session B*

*Session B will have simultaneous translation into Spanish.


Session Speakers:

Shavanna Calder, Performer, Equity & Diversity Consultant, and Creative Director

Over the past decade, she has worked with individuals on their Equity & Diversity journey as well as companies/organizations such as TYA/USA, Musical Theatre Educators Alliance, Innovative Voice Studio and more. She was also a consultant on the ‘Anti Racist and Anti Oppressive Futures for Theatre for Young Audiences’ guide.

Shavanna is first generation and holds a Master’s Degree from NYU and also received her BA from Wellesley College where she studied Sociology & Cinema and Media Studies. As a performer, some highlights include HBO’s Los Espookys, Saturday Night Live, Grammys, Hairspray (National Tour)., Instagram: @shaviexo


Elisha Beston, Actress

Elisha Beston (she/her) is a TYA performer, producer and educator based in Singapore. Performance highlights include the first North American tour of Llama Llama Live! produced by Bay Area Children’s Theatre (California) of which she is currently the Business Manager. She is the Founder/Artistic Director of Freddo Children’s Theatre (Singapore), a new TYA company dedicated to promoting diversity on stage. For more information go to


Michael J. Bobbitt, Executive Director, Mass Cultural Council

Michael J. Bobbitt is an award-winning theater director, choreographer, and playwright who has dedicated his professional career to arts leadership. He began his tenure as Executive Director of Mass Cultural Council in February 2021 and is the highest-ranking cultural official in Massachusetts. Bobbitt serves on the New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA) Board of Directors, the National Assembly of State Arts Agency’s (NASAA) Board of Directors, and was selected for artEquity’s BIPOC Leadership Circle. He is the former Artistic Director of the New Repertory Theater in Watertown, Massachusetts and the Adventure Theater in Maryland. Bobbitt gained extensive experience in nonprofit arts management by training at Harvard Business School’s Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management, The National Arts Strategies Chief Executive Program, and Cornell University’s Diversity and Inclusion Certification Program. As a director and choreographer he has worked nationally and internationally. As a writer his plays have been published by Concord Theatricals, Broadway Publishing, and Plays for Young Audiences. Bobbitt is the recipient of the Excel Leadership Award (Center for Nonprofit Advancement), the Emerging Leader Award (County Executive’s Excellence in the Arts and Humanities), and Person of the Year Award (Maryland Theatre Guide), along with eight Helen Hayes Awards.

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Please note that these are AI translations that have not yet been manually checked.