Winner of the 35th George Polk Career Award for ‘courageous and authentic journalism,’ Anna Deavere Smith’s theatrical productions have been hailed as a highly original and incisive form of journalism.
When it comes to understanding our complex society, Smith is both student and teacher. Drawing from thousands of interviews from all across the country with people from all walks of life, her plays weave separate accounts into a cohesive narrative that explore everything from race and healthcare, to education, civic engagement and the school-to-prison pipeline.
Anna Deavere Smith is “the American theater’s most dynamic and sophisticated oral historian.” – The New York Times.
A Pulitzer Prize-nominated playwright and actress, all of Smith’s speaking engagements include theatrical performance elements as she transforms herself into actual individuals selected from her one-on-one interviews that delve into the social issues haunting America.
Named a MacArthur “Genius” Fellow, Smith has appeared on television in Nurse Jackie and The West Wing, and in films such as Rachel Getting Married, Philadelphia, and The American President. Apart from acting, she is also a University Professor at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts and an affiliate with the NYU School of Law.