CEC ArtsLink is pleased to announce 2015 ArtsLink Fellows in performing arts and literature. This year’s twelve participants in the ArtsLink Residencies program come from any of thirty-seven eligible countries.


Host: 7 Stages Theater Company, Atlanta, GA

Artist - A director interested in documentary theater, Ban often begins his working process by interviewing community members on topics that provoke the past and look ahead to the future. His recent work, My Parents Were Awesome, was inspired by Romanians born in the 80's and their parents’ struggles to live and raise children during those difficult times. Ban’s directorial work has been staged at leading theaters in Romania, Spain, Germany, Hungary, Moldova and Turkey and has been awarded numerous prizes. He is interested in issues of immigration and family dynamics and would like to work on a project with artists and communities in the US to better understand the role that theater can play. Website>>


Host: CounterPULSE, San Francisco, CA

Arts Manager - Dorogan is a co-founder and manager of teatru-spalatorie, a multidisciplinary platform that provides a space for artists to act and respond to political and social events in Moldova and the world. For one ongoing project, people were invited to a public square where they could share supportive messages to the LGBT community while enjoying music and videos .. In addition to organizing and producing community-engaged performances and events, Dorogan is also involved with a fiveweek residency program for performing artists run by teatru-spalatorie. She seeks to gain familiarity with the American performing arts scene and to observe how artistic initiatives function within communities in the US.


Host: New York Theatre Workshop, New York, NY

Arts Manager - Eldeeb is co-founder and CEO of Reflection for Arts, Training & Development, which provides space and support to visual and performing artists and promotes the role of the arts in community development. Past programs include a forum theater project for women to find social solutions for sexual harassment and five-month training to assist arts managers with building organizational capacity. He would like to gain experience in strategic planning, fundraising strategies, marketing and organizing performances at alternative venues. He is also interested in learning new training methods, especially in theater improvisation.


Host: International Writing Program, Iowa City, IA

Artist - A fiction writer and poet, Kruusmägi is currently working on a novel that explores the essence of life in Indonesia, where she is studying traditional dance. She is also teaching creative writing there and organized a bilingual poetry workshop and performance for local students. In addition, she is developing a second book that will examine relationships between Estonians and Russians living in Estonia from the perspective of young people. As a journalist, Kruusmägi contributes to Öhtuleht, Estonia’s most widely read daily. She hopes to immerse herself in the American literary scene by attending and participating in readings, open mic events, lectures and workshops and by exchanging ideas with American writers. She would also like to gain insight into how literary events are organized.


Host: University of Louisville School of Music, Louisville, KY

Arts Manager - Mechitova is the founding director of Kavkaz Jazz Festival which brings together young musicians from Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan to perform, develop projects and attend workshops and concerts. The festival serves as a cultural bridge and provides an opportunity for audiences to hear diverse styles of music by emerging artists from the region. Last year, the Kavkaz Jazz Festival expanded to include musicians from Lithuania, Poland and Austria. In 2012, Mechitova founded the independent organization Art-Bridge to provide professional support for artists through educational and exchange programs. She would like to invite American musicians to participate in the Kavkaz Jazz Festival and she is eager to meet festival organizers, educators and musicians and to learn about music education and management models in the US.


Host: University of Michigan School of Music, Ann Arbor, MI

Artist - A saxophone player and composer, Muratov formed the ethno-jazz ensemble Jazzirama to synthesize Uzbek folk music with contemporary jazz and swing. Jazzirama has performed widely in regional and international jazz festivals and released its first CD in 2013. Muratov also recently launched the Ilkhom Jazz Club at the Ilkhom Theater in Tashkent to promote opportunities for young musicians to participate in master classes, workshops and jam sessions and to share diverse jazz styles with the public. He organized the first Jazz Club master class, led by Moscow saxophonist Timur Nekrasov, and the first concert, featuring four diverse ensembles, in 2014. Muratov hopes to gain exposure to music education models, improve his improvisational skills and exchange experiences and ideas with US colleagues. Website>>


Host: University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS
Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures

Artist - Mykhed is the author of two books and curator of the multimedia initiative Amnesia project: an open platform, which was shortlisted in 2014 for best world projects at SOUNDOUT! New Ways of Presenting Literature festival in Berlin. Currently, he is working on a novel about the Chernobyl nuclear catastrophe which will combine documentation with a fictional story of two brothers. A literary scholar as well as a writer, Mykhed teaches creative writing at Taras Shevchenko National University in Kiev using an interdisciplinary approach that views contemporary literature in the context of film and visual art. He would like to better understand contemporary literature, creative writing education and arts management practices in the US and to generate partnerships with creative professionals and community members. Website>>



Host: Fine Arts Work Center, Provincetown, MA

Arts Manager - Since 2008, Rózanska-Braniecka has coordinated international literary activities at Villa Decius Association in Krakow, including three residency programs for writers and translators. In addition to curating over 50 literary events, she has organized residencies for approximately 90 writers, translators and artists from over 20 countries. In the future, Rózanska-Braniecka hopes to broaden the scope of Villa Decius residency programs by inviting American writers and by establishing partnerships with US organizations to host Polish writers. She is also eager to enhance her understanding of all aspects of project development and implementation including fundraising, working with partner organizations and evaluation.


Host: Cleveland Public Theatre, Cleveland, OH

Arts Manager - Saladukha serves as director of development for CHe Theater and director of the International Student Theatre Festival Teatralny Kufar. Over 11 editions, the festival has gathered 156 university and youth theaters from 55 countries and has expanded to include programs throughout the year. Saladukha’s current professional goal is to contribute to an alternative independent arts movement by opening an interdisciplinary center that can serve as a venue and platform for experimentation, research, education and creative interaction. She would like to gain the practical skills necessary for organizing, maintaining and programming an arts center and to connect with American theater groups and artists for future collaboration.


Host: Ohio State University, Dance Department, Columbus, OH

Artist - A dancer and choreographer, Szemessy has training in classical ballet, contemporary dance, contact improvisation, Hungarian folk dance, Graham and Cunningham technique and Gaga. She is deeply engaged in theory as well as practice and seeks to create hybrid works that combine performance, discussion and action. A recent performance Listen was inspired by the research of psychologist Alison Gopnik on the types of human attention. After 16 dance solos, each lasting about 25 seconds, audience members were questioned about their observance of particular details, to create a personal chart of their mode of listening. Szemessy looks forward to meet and collaborate with colleagues and organizations in the US who are exploring alternative investigative methods and blurring the borders between art and pedagogy.


Host: Poets House, New York, NY

Artist - A playwright, poet and filmmaker, Yazji explores ways that people relate to the unknown and make it through crisis. Her first book of poetry Peacefully, we leave home, is infused with a sense of saying goodbye to a period of time that will not return. This work accompanies a documentary film she directed about how we inhabit homes and they inhabit us, particularly in times of war. She would like to develop a new book of poetry, based on her notes of the last two years, from a perspective outside her own experience. She is also interested in exchanging ideas and points of view with US writers, filmmakers, journalists and performers.


Host: Fist & Heel Performance Group, Brooklyn, NY

Artist - As a dancer and performer, "Shika" has studied a range of techniques, traditions and styles throughout the world, including most recently in Senegal, to transfer knowledge back to Egypt and build the emerging contemporary dance scene there. He is devoted to pushing the limits of dance and decreasing the gap between dance and street culture through performance in public space. In addition to dancing in choreographed works on the street, he also performed in a demonstration at the Cairo Opera House that summoned the power of the arts in defiance of a political decision. He hopes to explore how differences in culture and points of view affect expression through movement and would like to learn more about site-specific performance and dance video.