Michael Rohd is founding artistic director of Sojourn Theatre, a sixteen-year old ensemble-based company and a 2005 recipient of Americans for the Arts’ Animating Democracy Exemplar Award. He devises and directs new work around the nation and is on faculty at Northwestern University, where he helps lead the MFA Directing Program. He wrote the widely translated book Theatre for Community, Conflict, and Dialogue (15th printing, Heinemann Press, 1998). He leads the Center for Performance and Civic Practice, an ongoing body of activity comprised of research, programs and projects that aim to make visible the power of the arts to demonstrably increase civic capacity.
Rohd’s work with the Center, Sojourn, and in non-arts sector settings around the nation focuses on social practice and civic practice cross-disciplinary projects through collaboratively designed arts-based engagement and participation strategies. He is the 2013-2016 Doris Duke Artist-in-Residence at Lookingglass Theater Company in Chicago. Recent/current projects include leading a two year Sojourn Artist-in-Residence collaboration with Catholic Charities USA poverty reduction sites around the US; a Sojourn partnership with Planning Commissions around the country utilizing civic practice in public engagement settings to help communities deal with difficult conversations and resource allotment; and collaborating with theaters and universities around the country to mount locally specific projects based on Sojourn’s model performance/engagement process/production How To End Poverty in 90 Minutes.