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R&R Arts Festival

From Recovery to Regeneration

     In February 2017, Art2Action, Americans for the Arts, and the University of South Florida (USF) will co-host the National Initiative for Arts & Health in the Military (NIAHM), 4th National Summit, focusing on the Role of the Arts in Recovery, Transition & Transformation. For the first time in the history of NIAHM’s National Summit convenings, the 2017 gathering will be held in Tampa, FL, and will include a festival of original performance works by, for, about and with veterans, organized and curated by Art2Action. This ground-breaking event will help to place veterans’ stories—and the work of artists engaged in creation with them—at the center of an extraordinary cross-sector convening, designed to bring more than 200 military, veteran, and civilian practitioners, researchers and policy makers together to share knowledge, learn new skills and help inform a nationwide vision for increasing access to the arts and creative arts therapies for all of America’s military service members, Veterans, their families and caregivers. Additional partners include The Carpetbag Theatre, and New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA) “Art in the Service of Understanding: New Perspectives from Artists and the Military Community” program.  The R&R Arts Festival is made possible by the generous support of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation’s Fund for National Projects grant program.

“REGENERATION: 1 : an act or the process of regenerating; the state of being regenerated. 2 : spiritual renewal or revival. 3 : restoration of a body, bodily part, or biological system after injury, or as a normal process … Regeneration is renewal through internal processes … Something which embodies this action can be described as regenerative … Regeneration involves remaking … what is regenerate: to improve a place or system, especially by making it more active or successful.”

     The R&R Festival: From Recovery to Regeneration is a unique national festival of  performances created by, for, about & with Veterans.  In conjunction with the National Summit on Arts & Health in the Military, the festival will showcase a spectrum of practices and ways of creating new performance work that is rooted in the real-life experiences of military service members and Veterans. It will include theatre, music and dance works about veterans created by professional companies; by veterans who are now professional artists; and co-created with Veterans from the community, in partnership with professional artists.

     The R&R Festival will feature one evening-length work, as well as shorter works and excerpts, that illuminate the issues and challenges present in Veteran recovery and reintegration. These performances will provide an important opportunity for National Summit attendees, as well as audiences from the Tampa Bay area, to see full productions and showcases, to experience creative processes facilitated by leading national artists, and to hear directly from Veterans about their personal experiences in co-creation.

     In particular, it will feature artists who have demonstrated a multi-year commitment to this work, either because they are Veterans themselves, or have been significantly engaged in co-creation with veterans over time—theatre and dance artists who are leaders in their fields, in the overlapping sectors of community-based or socially engaged practice, art and civic dialogue, cultural development or diplomacy, or who exemplify first-voice representation.

     R&R Festival performances and events are open to the public. Tickets will be available through the USF College of the Arts box office.  Workshops will be by registration only, with limited availability.

     For more information about Art2Action & The Carpetbag Theatre’s on-going work with veterans, please visit our Veterans in Tampa page.


R&R Arts Festival
National Initiative for Arts & Health in the Military—4th National Summit—Tampa, Florida
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R&R Arts Festival - Preview
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Speed Killed My Cousin
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4 Min Booth - R&R Festival 2017
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Art2Action’s programs for the veteran community are made possible by the generous support of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, and is sponsored in part by the Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, the Florida Council of Arts and Culture and the State of Florida and the National Endowment for the Arts (Section 286.25, Florida Statutes); and all our fantastic partners!

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