Who We Are
Craig T. Peterson, Artistic Director
Craig Peterson joined the staff at Abrons in September, 2016. Previously he was the Director of Programs at Gibney Dance, a multi-faceted center for dance and performance development, training and presentation in New York City. From 2009 – 2013, Peterson was the Director and Producer of the annual Philly Fringe Festival, a three-week city-wide festival featuring the work of more than 200 performing artists and companies. During this time he also launched and directed the Live Arts Brewery (LAB), a research and development program supporting long term residencies and engagement activities for local and national artists. For ten years he served on the staff of Dance Theater Workshop, one of America’s preeminent contemporary performing arts institutions based in NYC. For four years he served as the organization’s Co-Artistic Director.
Renée E. Schwartz, General Manager
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As General Manager Renée oversees the logistics of artist’s residencies, special events, and building operations center wide within Henry Street’s Visual Arts & Performing Arts Division. She also assists the center’s directors in all aspects of operations including communicate and logistics between departments. Before coming to Abrons Renée was perviously at the Tilles Center for Performing Arts as the Operations Manager. Renée is a graduate from C.W. Post with a B.S. in Education.
Ali Rosa-Salas, Director of Programming
As Director of Programming at Abrons Arts Center/Henry Street Settlement, Ali Rosa-Salas develops the Center’s live programming, exhibitions, and residencies with Artistic Director Craig Peterson. As an independent curator, she has produced visual art exhibitions, performances, and public programs with AFROPUNK, Brooklyn Arts Exchange, Danspace Project, Knockdown Center, MoCADA, Weeksville Heritage Center, and more. She has also organized discursive events as an Alumnae Fellow at the Barnard Center for Research on Women and as the Associate Curator of the 2017 American Realness Festival. She graduated from Barnard with a B.A. in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, with interdisciplinary concentrations in Dance and Race/Ethnic Studies and has an M.A. from the Institute for Curatorial Practice in Performance at Wesleyan University. In addition to her role at Abrons, Ali supports electronic music DJs and producers as Special Projects Manager for Discwoman.
Katherine Tom, Programming Manager
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As Programming Manager at Abrons Art Center/Henry Street Settlement, Katherine Tom (they/them) supports the Director of Programming and Artistic Director in coordinating live programming, exhibitions, and the AIRspace residency. They are a nonbinary 1st & 5th generation Korean & Chinese American artist, organizer and healer born on Ohlone land (SF Bay Area), and based in Lenapehoking (NYC) for the past six yers. They are a cofounder of BUFU, a collaborative living archive and community organizing collective centered around (pan)Black and (pan)Asian cultural and political relationships, and the web, a qtpoc astrology event series.
Chantara Ellis, Director of School and Community Programs
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As Director of School and Community Programs, Chantara oversees Abrons’ outreach and school based teaching residencies. Chantara is an educator, artist and art historian from Fort Worth, Texas. She has a Masters in Museum Education from Bank Street College and a Bachelors in Art History from Brandeis University with a focus in modern and contemporary art. Chantara developed her interest in arts education while interning as a camp counselor and artist assistant at The Modern Museum of Art and an education intern at the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, Texas as a high school student. She has continued to work with a varied of museum education department, including the Rose Art Museum, Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and most recently the New Museum.
Randy Luna, Director of Center Education Programs
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As Director of Center Education Programs, Randy Luna oversees Abrons’ Center Education Programs. Randy was born and raised in the Lower East Side. He attended Brooklyn College and earned a Bachelors of Arts degree in Theater and a dual Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management while actively performing in NYC. For a decade, as a teaching artist he taught for District 75 along with other DOE contracts. In the entertainment/fashion world he is a creative director, choreographer, stylist and a designer. His creative work in the fast growing industry can be seen in magazine publications, TV and on celebrities. He is currently the Director of Center Education Programs at Abrons Arts Center.
Millie Kapp, Coordinator of Center Education Programs
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Millie Kapp is a New York-based performing artist. She graduated with a masters in Performance Studies from NYU and completed her undergraduate degree from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Kapp has presented her performance work in Oakland, Maine, Toronto, Philadelphia, Montreal, Minneapolis, Chicago and New York. She’s curated and programmed performance in New York City and was previously adjunct faculty at Stony Brook University.
Emma Zurer, Coordinator of School and Community Programs
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Emma Zurer is the Coordinator of School and Community Programs. She is a collage artist, performer and educator. Her work has been exhibited in various New York galleries and publications, most recently at the Material Art Fair in Mexico City. Emma has performed with the artist collective Cheryl in nightclubs around New York, including the Museum of Modern Art.
Jon Harper, Director of Operation and Facilities
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Jon oversees the technical aspects of the performance spaces and the shows that happens in them. Prior to joining Abrons and Henry Street, he toured as a lighting supervisor with Pilobolus, Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet, and Aspen Santa Fe Ballet. He has also worked for many years as a freelance lighting designer, and created the lighting for dance, theater, opera, performance art, and live music shows. He received his MFA in Lighting Design from the University of Tennessee in 2007.
Carl Johnson, House Manager
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Kenny Olguin, Assistant Technical Director
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Kenny handles a majority of the onsite technical needs for the many performances and events hosted by Abrons. Outside of his work at Abrons, Kenny performs professionally with Tiffany Mills Company (a Brooklyn-based dance company), works in technical theater and dance freelance, and deeply invests himself in the sustainability of dance and art making communities. Kenny got his start at Abrons back in 2014 as a Production Intern for the technical theater department. He graduated from Bennington College later that year with a BA in Liberal Arts, concentrating in dance and psychology.
Violet has a passion for all that is art. Overseeing and supporting the technical aspects of various productions at Abrons Violet’s goal is to support the artist and their creations in all forms. A freelance Production Manager, Event Coordinator, and Healer Violet believes, “It is through the art of the mind’s eye that we create, embrace, and explore. Art is a frequency that brings us together, and with that unity we all become artists?”. Production is her passion and helping those who wish to express their art is her joy. The goal always being to spread an up-full frequency and provide an artist with a stage so they can share that same passion and love with the world. Her inspiration comes from the thriving beings around her as she happily feeds the positive vibrations to the world.
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As Audience Services Manager, Justin works with the Front of House, Programming, Marketing and Production teams at Abrons Arts Center/Henry Street Settlement by developing and managing ticketing operations for Staff, Artists and Visitors. Justin received his BFA in Dance at NYU-Tisch School of the Arts in 2016 and continues his art practice as a freelance dancer and performance maker.
Katrina Neumann, Marketing and Graphic Design Manager
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Katrina Neumann is the Marketing and Graphic Design Manager at Abrons Arts Center. Outside of Abrons, Katrina founded Rate My Artist Residency in 2013 to 2016 (a website to rate residency experiences), which has more recently evolved into Rivet (2016–). Katrina is a graduate from SUNY Purchase College (BFA) and Tufts University and School of the Museum of Fine Arts (MFA).
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Meryl Weinsaft Cooper, Public Relations
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