VoxFest 2020: The Empathy Études


The Empathy Études
created by Olivia Gilliatt '08
Jonathan David Martin and Joshua David Robinson, collaborators

A VoxFest 2020 Festival performance
Note that there will be no public performance component to this project

In a time of social distancing, what is the spark in live theater that can continue? What, of the ephemera of shared human experience, is translatable in lieu of a story told around a campfire? Through a series of conversations, experiments, and experiential exercises,  "The Empathy Études" will investigate how we can use the technology and various media available to us to get to the heart of character; the specific, nuanced lenses that allow us an intimate peek at each others' psyches, and how we can apply these kinds of cross-pollination and examination to the larger context of Performing Art. Above all, Art can increase our ability to relate to our fellow humans; it should be fun! An investigation into how to express ourselves in new ways and how to delve into each other's lived experiences.



Olivia Gilliatt

Olivia Gilliatt is a critically-acclaimed actor, devisor, educator and producer. She has performed at New York institutions including HEREArts, The Sheen Center, and The Public Theater; and traversed the country in productions at the Denver Center, Buck's County Playhouse, Palm Beach Dramaworks, and Vermont's Northern Stage. Olivia consistently collaborates on the creation of new works with members of Songspace, the Musical Theater Factory, the LARK, the Playwrights Realm, and american vicarious, along with fellow members in her own creative laboratory, Book Club, co-run with Marina McClure '04. She is an alumna of Dartmouth College, and of NYU's Grad Acting program, where she teaches first-year students. She is also a board member of their Grad Acting Alumni Association and is the Artistic Producer of Studio Tisch, a summer theater festival for the ongoing education of alumni and creation of new work.


Jonathan David Martin

Jonathan David Martin is an actor, director, producer, and teaching artist focused on the creation and presentation of contemporary works of performance. As the Producing Co-Artistic Director of Smoke & Mirrors Collaborative he has created and produced "Tangible Hope Project", a documentary series about community changemakers, performed in the award-winning Olityelwe (Ndebele Funeral), directed Point of Departure and The Alien Nation, created Head in the Sand and co-produced The Black History Museum According to the United States of America (HERE Arts). Directing credits include his original plays URL vs IRL for Andy's Summer Playhouse and Facts of the Matter for Studio Tisch as well as Charlie Brown Christmas and Peter and the Starcatcher for Red House Arts Center, The Tempest for Touchstone Theatre, and Send 'Em Away for NYU Graduate Acting.  Jonathan was an actor and puppeteer in the original Broadway cast of Warhorse, appeared in the JJ Abrams-Alfonso Cuaron NBC series, "Believe," CBS's "Unforgettable, " and Off-Broadway at 59e59 Theatres and the National Black Theatre.  Regional credits include productions at Arena Stage, Woolly Mammoth, Two River Theater, Portland Center Stage, Ford's Theatre, Theater J, Theater Alliance, and Seattle Children's Theatre and Not Man Apart Theatre Ensemble where he is the Director of New Works Development. MFA-NYU Grad Acting.


Joshua David Robinson

Joshua David Robinson is a theatre artist. As an actor he has appeared Off and On Broadway and in regional theaters across the country, as well as working extensively as a voice over artist. As an educator he has worked at colleges and universities across the country, teaching voice, speech and theatrical devising to BFA and MFA students from from Arizona to New York. Holding an MFA from NYU Grad Acting, Joshua is always working to use theatre as a means to engage with his community and as a vehicle for social change.