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Theater for Social Change

“The TSC ensemble drives the program. They are changing hearts and lives with their life stories.”
–Elizabeth Mirarchi

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College and Community Fellowship’s Theater for Social Change (TSC) is a performance ensemble based in Harlem that uses theater to raise awareness about the impact of mass incarceration on women, families, and communities. TSC’s original performances are based on ensemble member’s life stories and experiences with the criminal justice system and as returning citizens, with a focus on eliminating barriers to higher education and advocating for reform. The ensemble performs regularly at venues ranging from national conferences to correctional facilities.

Most recently, TSC has performed at Rikers Island, Brandeis University, Metropolitan Correctional Center, Columbia University, Brown University, Wellesley College, the Harlem State Office Building, and the Talking Transition advocacy event to help shape New York City’s transition to a new mayor. Ensemble members were also recently featured in Suzanne Lacy’s public art project, Between the Door and the Street, presented by Creative Time and the Brooklyn Museum’s Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art. TSC is a grant recipient of Presbyterian Committee on the Self-Development of People. For more information about College and Community Fellowship and the Education from the Inside Out Coalition.

 If you want to join the cast or crew of TSC, contact your CCF counselor or the Program Staff.  If you wish to join the mailing list, please contact us.

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Request a TSC performance at your location or event.

TSC is available to perform at community venues for the purposes of entertainment and enhancing awareness and kinship regarding social issues. There is typically a nominal fee that covers stipends for the performers and travel. If you would like to invite TSC to perform, please click here and someone will contact you within 72 hours.

TSC performs regularly at universities, conferences, correctional facilities, and advocacy events.

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Notable Performances:

Kellogg Foundation America Healing Conference, Asheville, NC

Rose M. Singer Center, Rikers Island, NYC

Metropolitan Correctional Center, NYC

Columbia University, Beyond the Bars Conference

Brown University, Restore the Pell Grant Symposium

Read a full list at the bottom of the page. 

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Our Artistic Director

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Elizabeth Mirarchi is the artistic director of College and Community Fellowship’s Theater for Social Change ensemble. She has worked with TSC since 2008, directing and producing performances at venues such as Rikers Island, Metropolitan Correctional Center, Columbia University, The New School, and Brown University, as well as advocacy events and national conferences. She has facilitated performance workshops with TSC at Columbia University, Lycoming College, NYU, and Wellesley College; worked as a teaching artist in New York City schools; and recently spent two years working with city-sentenced women incarcerated on Rikers Island, coordinating a mentoring program through the Women’s Prison Association. Beth is the director and producer of the Sorry for Laughing variety show and holds an MA in Performance Composition from NYU’s Gallatin School.

TSC Ensemble- click here for a full list of ensemble bios

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Recent performances: 

Colleges & Universities

Baruch College, City University of New York, Pathways of Possibility Conference

Brown University, Restore the Pell Grant Symposium

Columbia University, Beyond the Bars Conference (Performance & Workshop)

Hostos Community College with the Bronx Reentry Working Group

Hunter College, Silberman School of Social Work

Lycoming College, Williamsport, PA (Performance & Workshop)

The New School University, Imagining America Conference

New York University (Performance & Workshop)

Wellesley College (Performance & Workshop)

Correctional Facilities

Logan Hall, Newark, NJ

Metropolitan Correctional Center, NYC

Rose M. Singer Center, Rikers Island, NYC

Conferences

America Healing Kellogg Foundation Conference, Asheville, North Carolina

Adult and Juvenile Female Offenders Conference (AJFO), Portland, ME

From Punishment to Wellness: A Public Health Approach to Women and the War on Drugs, w/ Women On the Rise Telling HerStory (WORTH), New York Academy of Medicine

Advocacy & Community Organizing

Village Independent Democrats, NYC

St. George Public Library, Staten Island w/ Education from the Inside Out Coalition and Hudson Link

FACES Women’s Day event

Educate Don’t Incarcerate, w/ New York Reentry Education Network (NYREN), Talking Transition Tent, NYC

Higher Education to Reduce Recidivism and Transform Lives, w/ Education from the Inside Out Coalition (EIO), Adam Clayton Powell State Office Building, NYC

Between the Door and the Street, Suzanne Lacy public art project, w/ Creative Time & Brooklyn Museum’s Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art

 

Reactions to TSC Performance at Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan:

“I felt inspired and encouraged.”

“Sky’s the limit. I can leave here and still pursue my dream as a teacher.”

“As a woman you can move forward after incarceration.”

“I felt like there’s hope for everyone no matter what your past has been.”

Read more