The Front Porch Presents: The Gina Chavez Trio & Rain Collectors, Benefitting Conspire Theatre

Date: Thursday, September 24th, 2015 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm (doors 6:30pm)
Location: All Saints’ Episcopal Church
209 West 27th Street, Austin, TX 78705 (map)
Tickets: Suggested donation $10-$20; Seating is limited, so advance purchase is recommended. Space permitting nobody will be turned away based on ability to pay.
Tickets available for purchase at the door at 6:30pm, or at Eventbrite.

Need a night out? Our friends at The Front Porch are hosting an evening of fun and music featuring 2015 Austin Musician of the Year Gina Chavez and the Gina Chavez Trio! Additional musical performance by Rain Collectors, an excerpt from Conspire Theatre’s newest play, plus a discussion with Gina and members of our Performing Possibilities Ensemble.

Drinks will be served and all ticket sales support the development of Conspire Theatre’s 2016 production of our new play, “Mothers & Daughters.” Created and performed by an ensemble of Austin women who have experienced jail or prison, “Mothers & Daughters” uses interviews, movement, photography, and storytelling to explore the effects of incarceration on mothers and families in Central Texas.

We hope you will join us!

Auditions for V-day Benefit Performances of Any One of Us: Voices from Prison:

Date: Sunday, December 14th, 2014 12:30pm-2:00pm
Location: Women’s Community Center of Central Texas V-Day Presents Any One Of Us: Words From Prison
1704 San Antonio Street, Austin, TX, 78701

Conspire Theatre is partnering with Empower Arts and V-Day for a new production of Any One of Us: Voices from Prison. Any One Of Us is written by more than 50 incarcerated or formerly incarcerated women in the U.S., revealing the connection between women in prison, and the violence that often brings them there, with honesty and sincerity. Eve Ensler weaves their fierce words into a powerful and change-inspiring performance. We are looking for a diverse group of women in the Austin Area to perform in this ground-breaking piece in April 2015. No performance experience necessary.

If you or someone you know would like to audition or are interested in getting involved in the production please contact producer Laramie Gorbett at

Come for the auditions, and stay for The Power of Voice workshop immediately following!

December Performing Possibilities Theatre Workshop:
The Power of Voice

Date: Sunday, December 14th, 2014 2:00pm-5:00pm
Location: Women’s Community Center of Central Texassuzi
1704 San Antonio Street, Austin, TX, 78701

Your voice is powerful. It can speak truth to power, create a work of art, cause an avalanche. Voices joined together can sing a social movement into being. Join Conspire Theatre and acclaimed jazz artist and vocal teacher Suzi Stern for an afternoon of creative exploration. Discover the outer limits of your unique voice, and join others in spontaneous, collective, powerful sound. Reflect and discuss how our voices influence our power as advocates for change, creative leaders, and human beings.
Cost: $0-20 suggested donation

All those who identify as women are welcome! RSVP today!
RSVP online at Event Brite or by calling Michelle at 512-981-7830.

October Performing Possibilities Theatre Workshop:
The Roles We Play – Performing Who You are & Who You Want to Be

Date: Saturday, October 18th, 2014 11:30am-2:30pm
Location: Servant Church Austin
1605 E 38th 1/2 St, Austin, TX 78722
Cost: Free for women who have experienced incarceration or have a lower income. Suggested donation: $20 for others (This helps us pay for food, space rental, and workshop facilitators)
All those who identify as women are welcome!
RSVP online at Event Brite or by calling Michelle at 512-981-7830.

Event Details:
Conspire Theatre’s Performing Possibilities program uses the arts to create positive community and reduce stigma experienced by those who identify as women who have been incarcerated.

This season we’re starting a new series of monthly Conspire Theatre workshops for folks who identify as women – both formerly incarcerated women AND women in Austin! Every month we’ll have different theme and learn a different artistic skill such as acting, playwriting, digital storytelling, photography, puppetry, and dance.

This month’s theme is “The Roles We Play: Performing Who You are & Who You Want to Be.” We will use storytelling, images, and theatre to explore the roles we play in our lives, the roles we WISH we were playing, and how to get there. The workshop will be lead by Conspire Artistic Director Michelle Dahlenburg, and community-based theatre artists Gabby Randle and Cortney McEniry.

Any questions, or to RSVP by phone, please call Michelle at (512) 981-7830.


Stand Up for Mental Health Comedy Show

Date: Sunday, August 24th, 2014 at 7:00pm (doors 6:00pm)
Location: Cap City Comedy Club
8120 Research Blvd, Austin, TX 78758
Tickets: $10, plus 2-item purchase of food/drink
Tickets available for purchase at the door at 6pm, or at Brown Paper Tickets. (Please do not contact Cap City for tickets.)

Need a laugh? This summer Conspire Theatre has teamed up with VSA Texas to present Stand Up For Mental Health, a comedy show featuring people who have lived experience of mental health issues and incarceration.

Ashika, Lauren, and Margie, three of our fantastic Performing Possibilities ensemble, along with 5 folks from VSA Texas, have been taking stand-up comedy classes with David Granirer, founder of SUMH. Each performer has developed 5 minutes of comedy material about their lives. The goal is to reduce stigma about mental health and incarceration.

We hope you will join us!


Performing Possibilities Performance @ the Sor Juana Festival

Date: Saturday, April 19th, 2014 at 6:00pm
Location: The Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center
600 River St, Austin, TX 78701″
Tickets: Free!

This year the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center’s annual Sor Juana Festival honors art-making and policies related to women’s incarceration.

As part of the festival, Conspire Theatre presents Performing Possibilities, 45-minute theatre piece featuring four women who have experienced incarceration. The 6pm performance is preceded by an exhibition of incarcerated women’s artwork and poetry in the community gallery, a reception at 5pm, and followed by a criminal justice panel featuring staff from the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition.

We encourage you to attend the other events in the festival in the evening Friday, April 18th and during the day Saturday, April 19th!

Performing Possibilities Performance (excerpt) @ the Mt. Zion Prison to Praise Festival

Date: Saturday, January 25th, 2014 at 6:00pm
Location: 2938 E 13th St, Austin, TX 78702
Tickets: Free!

Performing Possibilities Performance @ Servant Church

Date: Saturday, November 23rd, 2013 at 11:30am, followed by a talkback with the performers and Ana Yanez-Correa of the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition
Location: Servant Church, 1605 38th & 1/2 St Austin, TX 78722
Tickets: Free!

Conspire Theatre FIRST EVER Public Performance!

Date: Sunday, July 14th at 5:00 pm
Location: The Off Center, 2211 Hidalgo St  Austin, TX 78702
Tickets:  Brown Paper Tickets or at the door
Facebook event page here.

Since 2009, Conspire Theatre has led theatre and creative writing workshops for women incarcerated at the Travis County Correctional Complex in Del Valle. This July marks Conspire’s first project with women in the free world. On Sunday, July 14th, Conspire Theatre will premiere its first ever public performance, Performing Possibilities.

From July 12th through July 14th, Conspire will lead a three-day theatre workshop with women who have been to jail or prison. This will culminate in a public performance and community dinner catered by Central Market.

Over the final quarter of the 20th century, U.S. criminal justice policies underwent a period of intense politicization and harsh transformation. Draconian sentencing laws and get-tough correctional policies led to an unprecedented increase in jail and prison populations, driving the United States’ rate of incarceration head and shoulders above that of other developed nations[1]. The number of women serving sentences of more than a year grew by 757% between 1977 and 2004—nearly twice the 388% increase in the male prison population[2].

Women coming out of jail and prison face stigma that make finding stable housing and employment difficult, but many make huge efforts come back into their communities and make positive change. Join us as women tell their own stories of struggle and triumph, sorrows and joy set against the larger backdrop of incarceration in Texas.

[2] ibid

Flyer for Conspire Theatre's Performing Possibilities

Flyer for Conspire Theatre’s Performing Possibilities