“Artists and Thinkers” with Limor Tomer & Luke Stewart @ online
Sep 23 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm

“Artists and Thinkers” – An Intimate Conversation Series
Thursday, September 23 @ 7pm
with Hermitage Curator Limor Tomer (Live Arts, Metropolitan Museum of Art) & Hermitage Alumnus Luke Stewart (Composer, Jazz Bassist)

Join us online for a deep dive into the creative process! Register here.

The Hermitage Artist Retreat is launching a new series of virtual programming spotlighting the brilliant curators and Hermitage alumni who have developed their work and craft in residence at the Hermitage.

Presented online, these candid and intimate conversations between artists and members of the Hermitage Curatorial Council strip away the trappings of performance to get at the heart of the creative process and the vital role art plays in shaping our future. Focused on themes determined by the curator and artist, these hour-long events will be moderated by a member of the Hermitage team and provide audiences a unique glimpse into how curators and artists alike keep their finger on the pulse of our time to boldly create the impactful works of tomorrow.

To launch the series, longtime Hermitage curator Limor Tomer, General Manager of the Metropolitan Museum’s Concerts and Lectures and creator of the renowned MetLiveArts Series, will be in conversation with celebrated jazz musician and Hermitage Fellow Luke Stewart. A lauded multi-instrumentalist whose genre morphing talents have made him an anchor of the DC music scene and beyond, in addition to his time on stage as a musician, Stewart is also the Avant Music Editor of CapitolBop a website and not-for-profit organization which he helped to establish.

Limor Tomer, Lulu C. and Anthony W. Wang General Manager of Live Arts, has led The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Live Arts program for ten years, during which time she transformed the program into a world leader in museum-based performance. She curates, commissions, and presents groundbreaking performances, both in the Museum’s 700-seat auditorium and its galleries and public spaces. Limor regularly gives presentations on museum-based performance around the world and leads workshops with museums nationally and internationally.

Limor holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from The Juilliard School, completed her qualifying exams for a PhD at New York University and holds an Honorary Doctorate from Manhattan School of Music. She was honored by ETHEL, So Percussion, and ASCAP for her work in adventurous programming. She has taught Entrepreneurship in Creative Production at The New School, and served on the National Curatorial Council of The Hermitage Artist Retreat and on WNET’s ALL ARTS Advisory Council.

Hermitage Fellow Luke Stewart is a DC/NYC-based musician and organizer of important musical presentations, and has a strong presence in the national and international Improvised Music community. He is noted in Downbeat Magazine in 2020 as one of “25 most influential jazz artists” of his generation. He was profiled in the Washington Post in early 2017 as “holding down the jazz scene,” selected as “Best Musical Omnivore” in the Washington City Paper’s 2017 “Best of DC,” chosen as “Jazz Artist of the Year” for 2017 in the District Now, and in the 2014 People Issue of the Washington City Paper as a “Jazz Revolutionary,” citing his multifaceted cultural activities throughout DC.

In New York City, Luke collaborated with Arts for Art in hosting the first ever “Free Jazz Convention” to share resources and strategies among the community. He has also performed in a myriad of collaborations and performances in venues such as the Kitchen, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Pioneer Works, Roulette, and Issue Project Room.

Luke is also a presence in the greater community of Creative Musicians, with regular multi-city ensembles including. His regular ensembles include Irreversible Entanglements, Heroes are Gang Leaders, and Ancestral Duo, Six Six featuring guitarist Anthony Pirog, and experimental rock duo Blacks’ Myths. As a solo artist, he has been compiling a series of improvisational sound structures for Upright Bass and Amplifier, utilizing the resonant qualities of the instrument to explore real-time harmonic and melodic possibilities. As a scholar/performer, he has performed and lectured at Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, Medgar Evers College, George Mason University, Wayne State University, University of Montana, New Mexico State University, and the University of South Carolina.

He holds a BA in International Studies and a BA in Audio Production from American University, and an MA in Arts Management and Entrepreneurship from the New School.

In 2019, Luke was also a finalist for the Johnson Fellowship, citing his work in changing the musical fabric of Washington, DC.

Register here.

Paint on Canvas: An Artist Talk @ Art Center Sarasota
Sep 28 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Paint on Canvas: An Artist Talk @ Art Center Sarasota

Paint on Canvas: An Artist Talk
Presented in Partnership with Art Center Sarasota
with Hermitage Fellow Karen Chandler

Tuesday, September 28th @ 6pm

Art Center Sarasota Outdoor Courtyard
707 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, Florida 34236

Strictly Limited Capacity – Register here.

Join Hermitage Fellow and celebrated Sarasota/New York artist Karen Chandler as she discusses the various forms her work takes and what inspires her to spark joy in the people who see it. Recently featured in Sarasota Magazine for her “Sarasota Heroes” mural, Chandler’s work has taken her across the country: from the halls of many of the major publishing houses, to the launchpads and runways of NASA and the U.S. Air Force, and more recently to the vibrant beaches of Florida. Learn how her work has changed over time and still continues to grow.

Hermitage Fellow Karen Chandler has trained in traditional oil painting at the Stevenson Academy of Traditional Painting, as well as photography, design, and computer studies at the New York School of Visual Art. After completing her training, she began doing illustration work for major publishing houses, including Random House, Simon & Schuster, Ballantine, and Bantam Books. She has done covers for several Agatha Christie series, the R.L. Stine Goosebumps young adult series, and the Victoria Thompson murder mystery series, The Gaslight Mysteries, among many others.

At the age of 28, she was selected to participate in the NASA and United States Air Force Art programs. Her original oil paintings for them hang in the Deputy Director’s office at the Kennedy Space Center, the Pentagon, and the National Aviation Museum at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio. She has had exhibitions throughout the country, including New York, California, Massachusetts and Washington, D.C. and her work is in several private collections, as well as the permanent collection at the Union League Club of New York.

Her mural work includes “Sarasota Heroes,” a 20′ x 24′ piece in Sarasota, Florida, commissioned in 2020 by a joint venture of Sarasota Magazine and the Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County to honor Sarasota County’s healthcare workers on the front lines of the Covid battle.

“Artists and Thinkers” with Christopher Burney & Regina Taylor @ online
Sep 30 @ 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm

“Artists and Thinkers” – An Intimate Conversation Series
Thursday, September 30 @ 5pm
with Hermitage Curator Christopher Burney (New York Stage and Film) & Hermitage Alumna Regina Taylor (Playwright)

Join us online for a deep dive into the creative process! Register here.

The Hermitage Artist Retreat is launching a new series of virtual programming spotlighting the brilliant curators and Hermitage alumni who have developed their work and craft in residence at the Hermitage.

Presented online, these candid and intimate conversations between artists and members of the Hermitage Curatorial Council strip away the trappings of performance to get at the heart of the creative process and the vital role art plays in shaping our future. Focused on themes determined by the curator and artist, these hour-long events will be moderated by a member of the Hermitage team and provide audiences a unique glimpse into how curators and artists alike keep their finger on the pulse of our time to boldly create the impactful works of tomorrow.

For the second program in our “Artists and Thinkers” series, award-winning producer and current Hermitage curator Christopher Burney, Artistic Director of New York Stage and Film, speaks with Regina Taylor. An acclaimed writer, actor, playwright, and educator, Taylor has been honored with numerous awards including a Golden Globe and NAACP Image Award and is currently the Denzel Washington Endowed Chair of Theatre at Fordham University.

Christopher Burney is the Artistic Director of New York Stage and Film. Previously, he was the Tony-Award nominated Artistic Producer of New York’s Second Stage Theatre where he worked since 1996. He is on faculty at Columbia University where he teaches creative producing. He has lectured at Barnard College, The Einhorn School for the Performing Arts at Primary Stages, The Juilliard School, Bard College, The Boston School of Music, Marymount Manhattan College and the New England Theatre Conference.  He currently serves as a member of the Tony Awards Nominating Committee. He is a graduate of Brandeis University, B.A., and Columbia University, M.F.A.

Among many notable productions at Second Stage, selected productions he has shepherded include Dear Evan Hansen (book by Steven Levenson, music and lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul); Bachelorette (Leslye Headland, playwright); Murder for Two (book and music by Joe Kinosian, book and lyrics by Kellen Blair); Animals Out of Paper (Rajiv Joseph, playwright); Lonely, I’m Not (Paul Weitz, playwright); the Pulitzer Prize-winning Next to Normal (music by Tom Kitt, book and lyrics by Brian Yorkey); Warrior Class (by Kenneth Lin); King Liz (by Fernanda Coppel); and Mala Hierba (Tanya Saracho, playwright). He has worked with such writers as Anna Deavere Smith, Douglas Carter Beane, Gina Gionfriddo, Craig Lucas, Lanford Wilson, Theresa Rebeck, William Finn, Sam Shepard, David Ives, Kenneth Lonergan, Cheryl West, Martin Sherman, Jason Miller, Wendy Kesselman, August Wilson, Michael John LaChiusa, and Stephen Sondheim. He has worked with many leading directors such as Thomas Kail, Trip Cullman, Carolyn Cantor, Kenny Leon, Peter DuBois, Leigh Silverman, Mark Brokaw, Scott Ellis, Michael Greif, Garry Hynes, James Lapine, and Kathleen Marshall. As curator for 2ST Uptown, he developed numerous emerging writers and directors including Rajiv Joseph, Bess Wohl, Erica Lipez, Marisa Wegrzyn, Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Brooke Berman, Adam Bock, Carly Mensch, Michael Golamco, Trip Cullman, and Joe Calarco, among others.

He has consulted for various organizations including the Philadelphia Theatre Initiative, the Kesselring Prize, the Kurt Weill Foundation, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Asian American Arts Alliance, and the Jerome Fellowship. Previously, he worked from 1991-1997 at Lincoln Center Theater as the Assistant to the Director of Musical Theatre.

Actress, Director, Playwright, Educator, Activist, and Hermitage Fellow Regina Taylor is the Andrew W. Mellon grant Playwright in Residence for Repertory Theatre of St. Louis.

Taylor is writing new plays for Audible and for The Old Vic.

Taylor is the curator/director of the black album mixtape in collaboration with SMU. The Black Album is an initiative created by Taylor to invite creatives from all fields to think about how we got here and what ways we can create a better future. Students, professionals and all communities are welcome to create in your given fields- technology, science, art, activism.

Taylor’s Playwright credits include “Bread” (Edgerton Award. Water Tower Theater), “Crowns” (four Helen Hayes awards, including Best Director), “Oo-Bla- Dee,” (Steinberg-ATCA award) and “Drowning Crow,” (Broadway, MTC), “The Trinity River Plays” (Edgerton Foundation Award) and “stop.reset” (Signature Theater Residency Five).

Ms. Taylor received the Denzel Washington Endowed Chair Fordham University at Lincoln Center. An Artistic Associate of Goodman Theatre, Taylor is its most produced playwright.

Regina Taylor is featured in First Lady (starring Viola Davis), Love Craft Country (Jordan Peele, J J Abrams, Mischa Green), Netflix’ All Day and a Night starring Jeffrey Wright, Ashton Saunders and directed/written by Joe Robert Cole (writer: Black Panther), guest stars on Council of Dads (NBC) Red Line (Producer Ava DuVernay CBS) The Good Fight. Taylor in her TV role as Lily Harper in “I’ll Fly Away” received a Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actress, 3 NAACP Image Awards and two Emmy Award nominations. Her other television roles include “The Unit”. Taylor was first African American lead in Masterpiece Theatre’s “Cora Unashamed, starred as Anita Hill in HBO’’s “Strange Justice” (Gracie Award) and “A Good Day to Die” starring Sidney Poitier. She has co-starred in USA Networks’ Dig and guest starred in “Elementary” and “The Black List”. Taylor’s film credits include “Saturday Church”, “The Negotiator,” “Courage Under Fire,” “Clockers,” and “Lean on Me.”

Taylor was also the first Black woman to play Juliet in “Romeo and Juliet” on Broadway (Belasco Theatre).

Register here.


Finding Resonance: The Vibrations of Art, Poetry, and Theater @ Hermitage Beach
Oct 8 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Finding Resonance: The Vibrations of Art, Poetry, and Theater
Friday, October 8th @ 6pm • on the Hermitage Beach

Three experts in three different art forms come together to discuss their practice and latest works. Poet and Hermitage Fellow Lynnell Edwards returns to share new and previously published works of poetry inspired by her experiences, and visual artist and Hermitage Fellow Nathaniel Donnett brings insight into his approach to creating art through “Dark Imaginarence,” a term coined by Donnett describing a way of life where one can think, make, act, and exist creatively. To complete the conversation, multidisciplinary artist and theater creator Shayok Misha Chowdury speaks about his process at the intersections of creation and performance across mediums. In the conversation to follow, these three artists will discuss the forces that inform their art with a particular focus on interactions between the seemingly distinct mediums.


Lynnell Edwards (pictured above) is author of author of several poetry collections, including This Great Green Valley, Covet, The Highwayman’s Wife, The Farmer’s Daughter, and the Kings of the Rock Hot Shop. Her work has appeared in New MadridConnecticut Review, Cincinnati Review, and Pleiades, and her poems have been featured on Verse Daily. She is Associate Programs Director for Spalding University’s School of Creative and Professional Writing in Louisville, Kentucky. Edwards is a founding member of Louisville Literary Arts and serves on the Kentucky Women Writers Conference Board. A recipient of the Al Smith Fellowship, Edwards holds a Ph.D. in rhetoric and composition and a master’s degree in creative writing, both from the University of Louisville.

Visual artist, cultural practitioner, and Hermitage Fellow Nathaniel Donnett lives and works in Houston, Texas. Donnett’s practice holds metaphysical and phenomenological spaces that consist of mixed media, textiles, installation, sound, sculpture, video, collaborative practices, and public art. “Dark Imaginarence,” a neologism coined by Donnett, describes a way of life where one can think, make, act, and exist creatively. Donnett received his BA in Fine Arts from Texas Southern University and is a 2021 MFA Candidate in Painting at the Yale University School of Art. Donnett is a recipient of a Fresh Arts Houston commission and a Project Row Houses commission for his ongoing project “What’s The New News,” as well as a Downtown Wayfinding Signs Project public art commission. In addition, Donnett is the recipient of the Houston Arts Alliance Individual Artist Grant, a Harpo Foundation Grant, an Idea Fund/Andy Warhol Foundation Grant, and an Artadia Award. His work has been shown at The Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art (Virgina Beach, VA), The Mennello Museum (Orlando FL), The Ulrich Museum (Wichita, KS), The McColl Center (Charlotte, NC), The American Museum (Washington, DC), The Kemper Contemporary Arts Museum (Kansas City, MO), The Theresa Hotel (Harlem, NY), Harvey B Gantt Art Center for African American Arts and Culture (Charlotte, NC), The Community Artist’s Collective at The Mattatuck Museum (Waterbury CT), The Contemporary Arts Museum of Houston, (Houston, TX), Project Row Houses (Houston, TX), The University Museum (Houston, TX), and The New Museum (New York, NY).

Writer, director, and Hermitage Fellow Shayok Misha Chowdhury is a many-tentacled artist and theater-maker. He is the creator of VICHITRA, an experiment in queer South Asian imagination, commissioned by Ars Nova, The Bushwick Starr, HERE Arts Center, Joe’s Pub, Sound Scene, and New York Stage and Film. Currently a Project Number One Artist at Soho Rep, Misha is an alumnus of The Public Theater’s Devised Theater Working Group, Soho Rep’s Writer/Director Lab, Ars Nova’s Makers Lab, New York Theatre Workshop’s 2050 Fellowship, and residencies at the Hermitage, BRIC, The Drama League, and SPACE on Ryder Farm. Recent: Brother, Brother (New York Theatre Workshop) with Aleshea Harris; MukhAgni (Under the Radar); How the White Girl Got Her Spots and Other 90s Trivia (Joe’s Pub). In the works: Public Obscenities (Soho Rep); Rheology (HERE Arts Center); SPEECH (Playwrights Horizons) with Lightning Rod Special. A NYFA/NYSCA, Fulbright, and Kundiman Fellow, Misha has been published in The Cincinnati Review, TriQuarterly, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Asian American Literary Review, and elsewhere. Misha received his Bachelors in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity at Stanford University, his MFA in Directing Theater at Columbia University, and studied Lecoq-based physical theater at the London International School of Performing Arts. He has taught and directed at Stanford, Brown, NYU Tisch, CalArts, Fordham, Syracuse, and Williams.


Body Language: An Exploration of Movement and Poetry @ Hermitage Artist Retreat
Oct 15 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Body Language: An Exploration of Movement and Poetry
with Hermitage Fellows Jules Downum and Pedro Serrano

Friday, October 15th @ 6pm

The Hermitage Campus, 6660 Manasota Key Road, Englewood, Florida 34223

Attendees are encouraged to dress comfortably for some voluntary, light movement participation!

Dancer, choreographer, and producer Jules Downum facilitates a “Dance 101” workshop on the Hermitage Great Lawn! No judgments and no prior experience needed as you start to learn the language of movement through common footwork patterns and dance vocabulary. The use of language will also be explored on the page and out loud by internationally celebrated bilingual poet and Guggenheim Fellow Pedro Serrano, who shares works in both English and Spanish.

Register here.

Hermitage Fellow Jules Downum is a dancer, choreographer, producer, director, and a co-founder of The Pop-up Project, a Chattanooga based non-profit organization that creates large scale, cross-genre performances in non-traditional spaces. Through The Pop-up Project, she has directed eleven site-specific films; produced dozens of events, and worked with over one hundred students and professional artists throughout Tennessee and the United States. Jules has danced professionally since 2006; she has travelled internationally to teach and perform as a solo artist and as a member of Urban Tribal Dance Company (based in San Diego, California). She has an MA in applied cultural anthropology from San Diego State University.

Hermitage Fellow Pedro Serrano is a poet, essayist, and translator born in Montreal. He was director of the Banff International Translator Centre and editor of Periódico de la poesía. He published Defenfsas, a book on poetry and other wanderings in 2014 and La construcción del poeta moderno (The Construction of the Modern Poet), an essay on T.S. Eliot and Octavio Paz in 2012. With Carlos López Beltrán, he published La generación del cordero (The Lamb Generation), a bilingual anthology of Contemporary British Poetry. He translated William Shakespeare’s King John and Edward Hirsch’s Gabriel: A Poem. His poems have appeared in Modern Poetry in Translation, Verse, Sirena, The Rialto, The Red Wheelbarrow, Nimrod, and Bomb. He has been also included in the anthologies Reversible Monuments (Copper Canyon, 2002) Connecting Lines (Sarabande Books, 2006), Mexican Poetry Today 20/20 Voices (Shearsman Books, 2010), Being Human: More Real Poems for Unreal Time (Bloodaxe, 2011) and Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, poetry, drama and Writing, edited by X.J. Kennedy and Dana Gioia. He was granted the Guggenheim fellowship for poetry in 2007 and the Prix international de poésie Antonio Viccaro in 2016. Peatlands, translated by Anna Crowe and introduced by W.N. Herbert, was published by Arc in 2014.

Hermitage Sunsets @ Selby Gardens: Memoir of a Mime @ Selby Gardens Downtown
Oct 22 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Hermitage Sunsets @ Selby Gardens: Memoir of a Mime @ Selby Gardens Downtown

“Hermitage Sunsets @ Selby Gardens: Memoir of a Mime”
featuring Hermitage Fellow Bill Bowers

Friday, October 22nd @ 6pm

Selby Gardens Downtown, 1534 Mound St, Sarasota, FL 34236  

Register here.

Combining traditional mime with spoken word, internationally renowned storyteller and Hermitage Fellow Bill Bowers looks back at his life in the arts and invites you along for the ride! Sharing selections from his in-progress memoir developed at the Hermitage, as well as other writing and performance pieces, “The Great American Mime”  brings a modern sensibility to the classic craft as he relives over 30 years on the road as a solo performer. The program will be followed by a discussion and Q&A all as the sun sets against the beautiful backdrop of Selby Gardens.

As an actor, mime, and educator, Bill Bowers has traveled to all 50 of the United States, and throughout Europe and Asia. His Broadway credits include Zazu in The Lion King and Leggett in The Scarlet Pimpernel. Bowers has written and performed his own plays Off-Broadway and in theaters around the world. These plays include: ‘Night Sweetheart ‘Night Buttercup, Under a Montana Moon, It Goes Without Saying, Beyond Words, and All Over the Map. His newest solo play, The Traveler, is streaming online and he has just completed filming an adaptation of Peter and the Wolf with the American Classical Orchestra that will air on PBS this season. Bowers has been hailed by critics as “the great American mime,” winning top honors at festivals throughout the world. He was a student of the legendary Marcel Marceau.

What Even Is This? Discovering Surrealist Fiction @ Hermitage Artist Retreat Beach
Oct 29 @ 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm
What Even Is This? Discovering Surrealist Fiction @ Hermitage Artist Retreat Beach

What Even Is This? Discovering Surrealist Fiction
with Hermitage Fellow Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah

Presented in Partnership with Bookstore1

Friday, October 29th @ 5:30pm ET

The Hermitage Beach, 6660 Manasota Key Road, Englewood, Florida 34223

Also available via Zoom Live-Stream

In his New York Times bestselling novel Friday Black, Hermitage Fellow Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah creates a series of short stories that simultaneously feel like a dystopian future and a case study of our present moment. This surreal quality leaps off the page from start to finish as the stories swerve between both startlingly familiar and shockingly strange landscapes. Hear from the author about the importance of “beginnings” and how this has shaped his work.

Register here. 

Hermitage Fellow Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah is the New York Times-bestselling author of Friday Black. Originally from Spring Valley, NY, he graduated from SUNY Albany and went on to receive his MFA from Syracuse University. His work has appeared or is forthcoming from numerous publications, including The New York Times Book Review, Esquire, Literary Hub, The Paris Review, Guernica, and Longreads. He was selected by Colson Whitehead as one of the National Book Foundation’s “5 Under 35” honorees, and he is the winner of the PEN/Jean Stein Book Award, as well as a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle’s John Leonard Award for Best First Book and the Aspen Words Literary Prize.

2021 Artful Lobster: An Outdoor Celebration! @ Hermitage Artist Retreat
Nov 13 @ 11:30 am – 2:00 pm
2021 Artful Lobster: An Outdoor Celebration! @ Hermitage Artist Retreat

The highly popular Artful Lobster is our signature fundraising event, and the only benefit to take place on our historic Gulf front campus on Manasota Key. With a luscious lobster feast catered by Michael’s On East and live entertainment featuring a celebrated Hermitage Fellow, the Artful Lobster is anticipated as the season kick-off for many across our community.

To learn more about Artful Lobster and to purchase tickets, click here.