Event Details
  • Town Hall Open Discussion: Gender Parity
    October 19, 2023
    6:30 pm - 9:00 pm
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Town Hall (live) – Career Roadblocks: Gender Disparity and Ageism

Thursday, October 19 - networking at 6:30 pm, open forum starts at 7:00pm ET
Polaris North Studio, 245 W. 29th Street, 4th floor, NYC

Our return to our live monthly panels/discussions, with a simultaneous streaming for our friends outside of New York City. (Everyone should receive the zoom link when you register. If you don't receive it, email TRUnltd@aol.com to request link.)

Co-hosted by producer Jacquelyn Bell Kearney, 2020 Special Tony Awarded founder of Broadway Advocacy Coalition and an Associate at the Nederlander Organization; writer Rose-Marie Brandwein, president of the board of Polaris North Studio; writer/activist Cindy Cooper, co-initiator of Honor Roll!/The Profiles Project; actress Emma Davidov, founder of The Aurelians Collective and The Pearl Agency, a boutique creative agency; writer Nico Juber, (Millennials are Killing Musicals); director Ludovica Villar-Hauser, founder, artistic and executive director of Parity Productions. Moderated by TRU co-founder Cheryl L. Davis, general counsel for The Authors Guild, and TRU executive director Bob Ost.

TRU monthly conversations continue about issues of current cultural significance. We expand our conversation about the ongoing uphill battle for gender equality, and add in the inequities of ageism. These fights have been part of our political fabric for generations, and continue to influence and impact the arts and specifically, for us, theater. We will look at the ongoing struggle for equal pay, equal opportunities and equal rights, the resistance to women being accepted in positions of power and thought leadership, the cultural trap of double standards and implicit bias, and the undervaluing of experience in the workplace. Our guest "co-hosts" span several generations in an effort to consider whether the perception of these issues differs from generation to generation, and examine ways in which generations can help and influence each other.  There's much work to be done, and it all starts with awareness. Attendees are encouraged to talk about their own experiences with gender discrimination and ageism. TRU offers this as an opportunity for everyone to learn from actual experiences and find ways to support each other while exploring initiatives that might bring us closer to genuine respect and acceptance. All attendees are welcome to participate in this conversation.

Doors open at 6:30pm for networking and roundtable introductions of everyone in the room – come prepared with your best 20-second summary of who you are, and what you need. The Open Forum will start at 7:00pm. Free for members of TRU, Polaris North and Polarity Productions; $15 for non-members (with a $5 ticket option available to anyone who needs it). Please use the bright red reservation box here on our web page, or email or phone at least a day in advance (or much sooner): e-mail TRUStaff1@gmail.com


    received the Kleban Award as a librettist for her musical Barnstormer, (written with Douglas J. Cohen) about Bessie Coleman, the first Black woman flyer. The show received a Jonathan Larson Award through the Lark Play Development Center. Her play Maid’s Door received great reviews, won seven Audelco Awards, and was a finalist for the Francesca Primus Prize. Her play The Color of Justice (commissioned by Theatreworks/USA), received excellent reviews in the New York Times and Daily News, and tours regularly. Her musical Bridges, which was commissioned by the Berkeley Playhouse, received its world premiere in February 2016 to great reviews and three award nominations from the San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle. She received a Writers’ Guild Award for her work on “As the World Turns”, and was also nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award. Her work has been read and performed internationally, including at the Cleveland Play House, the Actors Theatre of Louisville, and the Kennedy Center.  She is the General Counsel of the Authors Guild.


    formed Bell Arts, a commercial theatre and live event producing entity in 2015. She is a 2020 Special Tony Awarded founder of Broadway Advocacy Coalition. Jacquelyn is currently an Associate at the Nederlander Organization where she recently Co-Produced the Lena Horne Theatre Dedication Renaming Ceremony. Previously, she served as the Director of Investor Relations at Visceral Entertainment and is a producer of the Drama Desk nominated Emojiland the Musical, a New York Times Critics' Pick. She is most known for the acclaimed productions of Broadway for Black Lives Matter #Bway4BLM, and Summertime. She is the 2018 Commercial Theater Institute Fred Vogel Scholar, a Fellow of the Broadway League, and currently sits on the League's EDI committee. Jacquelyn stands firmly for equity and inclusion throughout the theatre industry. Notable collaborations include Broadway: The Band's Visit, King Kong, The Prom, and Moulin Rouge (Foresight Theatrical); and Off-Broadway: Life Sucks and Curvy Widow. Jacquelyn has a passion for public speaking and has been featured in Forbes, NBC News, PBS, and BET. www.BellArtsEntertainment.com


    studied with playwrights Larry Carr, Jack Gelber, Walter Hadler, Dick Longchamps and David Scott Milton; with directors Andrew Leynse and Tyler Marchant at Primary Stages. She was a member of the long-defunct Roundabout Conservatory Theatre’s Playwriting Unit and HB Studio. Her one- act, Expiration Date, was featured in the Women at Work Festival (Stage Left Studio), The East to Edinburgh Festival (59E59 Theaters) and at the Edinburgh Fringe (Merchants’ Hall). Her short play, The Broken Teacup was featured at the AEA Diversity show, 21st Century Women. She earned an MFA in Professional Writing from the University of Southern California, and her MS in Strategic Communications from Columbia University. Member, HONOR ROLL!


    is an award-winning playwright whose work has been produced in the US, Canada, Europe and Israel. In New York, her work has been at Primary Stages, The Women’s Project (WP Theater), Wings, Lincoln Center’s Clark Studio, MultiStages, EST, Town Hall, Museum of Tolerance, Anne Frank Center USA, Judson Church, JCC, Vaclav Havel Library Foundation, New Circle Theatre Co., HBO, Center for Jewish History, LaMama Galleria, WOW Café, and more, as well as in Chicago, Minneapolis, DC, Philadelphia, Boston, Reno, San Francisco, LA, Maryland, Tennessee, Texas, Florida, Budapest, Helsinki, and Jerusalem. Her plays are united by a passion for socially relevant topics, stylized staging and a dramatic-comedic mix. A two-time Jerome Fellow, her theater writing is in 17 volumes and has won awards from Pen & Brush, Samuel French Short Play Festival, Malibu Int’l Festival, Quixote Foundation, the City of Providence, and others. She is the founder of ReproFreedomArts.org, and is a journalist on topics of human rights and the author of eight nonfiction books, one of which was made into a CBS movie. An activist in and out of theater (she produced the first women’s playwriting conference), she is currently on the Executive Committee of Honor Roll! Playwrights. www.cyncooperwriter.net


    is a multi-hyphenate artist, performer, and entrepreneur based in New York City. She is the co-founder and Executive Director of The Aurelians Collective, an organization dedicated to uplifting a diverse network of emerging and underrepresented artists. Davidov is also the founder/CEO of The Pearl Agency, a boutique creative agency that specializes in developing and deploying global marketing strategies for lifestyle, haute-couture, entertainment, skincare and wellness brands. A writer, actress, musician, and producer, Davidov most recently produced an acclaimed salon series with The Aurelians Collective, played Molly in The Bold and the Beautiful, and stars in the upcoming independent short film Soup. In 2022, Davidov published her debut book of poetry, The Romantic: A Book of Poems. She studied music and voice at Fordham University and the Juilliard School, earning a Bachelor’s degree in Music. She holds a deep affinity for Taylor Swift.


    is a musical theatre composer, lyricist, bookwriter, playwright, and proud graduate of the TRU PDMP Foundations & Master Classes. She won awards in the 2021 Drama League Light the Lights Songwriting Contest and the 2020 NAMT 15-Minute Musical Challenge. Her original musical comedy, Millennials Are Killing Musicals, has been featured as part of New York Theatre Barn's New Works Series and presented recently in sold-out concerts at Feinstein's/Vitello's (L.A.) and Feinstein's/54 Below (NYC). http://nicojuber.com


    Ludovica's directorial accomplishments include the New York premiere of Otho Eskin’s Duet, the world premiere of Teresa Lotz’s She Calls Me Firefly, the Off-Broadway world premiere and West End premiere of Gregory Murphy’s The Countess (634 Off-Broadway performances), Philip Ridley’s Leaves of Glassand Laura Pedersen’s For Heaven’s Sake!, among many other critically-acclaimed productions. Ludovica was the youngest woman ever to simultaneously produce and direct in London’s West End. In the New York theatre industry, she was also one of the few women to own and operate her own theatre for 17 years — The Greenwich Street Theatre. She served on the Board of the League of Professional Theatre Women from 2009-2018 and is currently the Producer of its Oral History Project at NYPL for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. Previous to her many credits in New York, at twenty-three, Ludovica was the youngest woman ever to simultaneously produce and direct in London’s West End. Her production of O’Neill’s Long Day’s Journey into Night transferred after its initial run to a larger West End venue. In the New York theatre industry, Ludovica is one of the few women to have owned and operated her own theatre – The Greenwich Street Theatre – which she ran for seventeen years, during which time she developed more than thirty new plays and presented the work of hundreds of theatre artists.  Alongside her directorial career, Ludovica is Founder and Artistic Director of Parity Productions, a recipient of NYWA's Galaxy Award, and has served on the Board of the League of Professional Theatre Women since 2009.