Meena Natarajan, Artistic and Executive Director (she/her/hers)
Meena Natarajan is a playwright and director and the Executive and Artistic Director of Pangea World Theater, a progressive, international ensemble space that creates at the intersection of art, equity and social justice. She has led the theater’s growth since it’s founding in 1995. Meena has co-curated and designed many of Pangea World Theater’s professional and community based programs. She has written at least ten full-length works for Pangea, ranging from adaptations of poetry and mythology to original works dealing with war, spirituality, personal and collective memory. Meena leads ensemble-based processes in Pangea that lead to works produced for the stage. She has also directed and dramaturged several original theater and performance art pieces. She is currently on the board of the Consortium of Asian American Theaters and Artists and is a National Theater Project Advisor at New England Foundation for the Arts. She was on the Advisory Committee of the Community Arts Network, was on the founding board of the Network of Ensemble Theaters and was the president of Women’s Playwrights International between 2000-2003. She has been awarded grants from the Theatre Communications Group, Playwrights Center and the Minnesota State Arts Board. She was recently awarded the Visionary Award for mid-career leaders from the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits.
Mollie Lacy, Development Associate (they/them/theirs)
Mollie Lacy began as an intern at Pangea World Theater while doing HECUA's Writing for Social Change program as a sophomore at the University of Minnesota. Mollie is a poet, most often found on slam stages in the Twin Cities, but occasionally at tournaments such as the Rustbelt Regional Poetry Slam. They represented the University of Minnesota at the College Union Poetry Slam Invitational in 2013 and 2014 as a member of the team USlam. They are the oldest of three sisters, and just trying to be a good role model.
Julia Malmgren, Accountant (she/her/hers)
Supporting the missions of nonprofits across the Twin Cities, Julia has been a part of Pangea’s team for over 10 years. Her belief is that art, especially theater, transforms the views of individuals and communities around issues of social awareness and justice. An accomplished professional in nonprofit business management and accounting, she has brought clarity and insight to several arts organizations to further the impact of important works. Originally from Michigan, and educated at Eastern Michigan University, Julia calls Minnesota home for her and her family.
Ellen Marie Hinchcliffe, Grant Writer (she/her/hers)
Ellen joined the staff of Pangea in 2014 after many years of engaging with Pangea as an artist. Her work is about ancestors, spirit, politics, contradictions, humor, confronting white supremacy and always about healing. She lives in Minneapolis, two blocks from the Mississippi with her husband and their amazing daughter. "Pangea is an important home for artists. I felt both respected and engaged from the moment I first encounter Dipankar, Meena and Pangea. I have held several events in Pangea's studio including my solo show- Death's Daughter and the Twin Cities Premiere of my film Thought Woman- The Life and Times of Paula Gunn Allen. As well as working directly with them as part of The Bridges Program. Pangea puts artists at the center!"
Her artist website is www.fierceshimmer.com.
Sarah N. Duncan, Communications Coordinator (she/her/hers)
Sarah N. Duncan is a mixed-media artist and graphic designer. Believing that representation matters, her mixed-media works use gesture, craft, mark-making, and objects to view herself and the world through different lenses to investigate why and how this world and imagine what is possible. She is queer, white, artist, dancer, writer, parent, friend, and old enough to know that her work is serious play and that the way she move in, with, and through this world is as important as what emerges from her efforts. She joined Pangea’s circle as an intern in the spring semester of 2020 as part of HECUA’s Art for Social Change program and is happy to continue to be part of the connected, grounded, and process-focused way of working that is Pangea.
Ahan Devgun (he/him/his)
Ahan Devgun is a junior at The Blake School and an intern at Pangea for the summer of 2022. He loves reading, singing, and learning about the way that science affects society specifically in the realm of the brain. He has passion for social awareness and building community through the arts. He believes that art itself can inspire and create change and believes in the power of artists at the center for social change. He works as a chair on the youth advisory board for a teen clinic, and trusts in the power of a youth perspective. His favorite genres of books are speculative fiction and he loves the work of Silvia Moreno-Garcia.
Dipankar Mukherjee, Artistic Director (he/him/his)
Dipankar Mukherjee is a professional director originally from Calcutta, India with a 25-year history of directing. He is the Artistic Director of Pangea World Theater. He co-founded Pangea World Theater, an international theater in Minneapolis that is a progressive space for arts and dialogue. His aesthetics have evolved through his commitment to social justice, equity and deep spirituality and these factors along with relevant politics form the basis of his work. As a director, he has worked in India, England, Canada and the United States.
Dipankar has received the Humphrey Institute Fellowship to Salzburg and has been a Ford Foundation delegate to India and Lebanon. He is a recent recipient of the Bush Leadership Fellowship award to study non-violence and peace methodologies in India and South Africa. Dipankar was invited to visit the White House as part of the Asian American and Pacific Islanders Delegation. In his rehearsal and workshop practices, Dipankar’s facilitated processes that work to disrupt colonial, racist and patriarchal modalities that we have inherited and collaboratively searches for an alternate way of working.
Katia Cardenas, Education Coordinator and Database Manager (she/her/hers)
Katia Cardenas is a performing artist hailing from the Pacific Northwest, and California's Central Valley. A jazz and r&b vocalist, as well as an actor, dancer, director and teaching artist, Katia came to the Twin Cities in 2006 to attend Macalester College (Psychology Major, Theater minor). After graduating in 2010, she worked as a freelance theater arts educator, leading theater classes for youth at local youth theater companies, City of St. Paul camps, and area rehabilitation centers. She is passionate about community building and social justice, and is a core member with numerous local arts networks and organizations, including Twin Cities Cabaret Artists Network (TCCAN) and Jazz Central Studios.
Katia first worked with Pangea in 2012 as an actor their production of House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros at The Southern Theater. She has been with Pangea as Database Manager since 2014, and Education Coordinator since 2018. Katia currently also works with Minnesota Jazz Education, and St. Paul Public Schools' Community Education.
To see videos and find out about upcoming events, you can visit KatiaCardenas.com.
Keila Anali Saucedo, Executive Productions Assistant (they/them/theirs)
Keila Anali is a theater maker in the twin cities and proud ensemble member of Pangea World Theater. Their plays Only I and What I Have Left to Eat have been performed in the Twin Cities. They are working on their third play Brujería for Beginners as a part of the 20% Theatre's Q-Stage program. Keila's work is informed by their identity, the lands of her mothers, and a deep connection to spirit and ancestry.
Ismail Khalidi, Directing Fellow (he/him/his)
Ismail Khalidi’s plays include Truth Serum Blues (Pangea World Theater ‘05), Tennis in Nablus (Alliance Theatre ‘10), Foot (Teatro Amal ‘16), Sabra Falling (Pangea ‘17), and Dead Are My People (Noor Theatre ‘18). He also co-adapted two novels for the stagel Ghassan Kanafani’s Returning to Haifa (Finborough Theatre ‘18) and Sinan Antoon’s The Corpse Washer (Actors Theatre of Louisville ‘19). Khalidi’s work has been included in numerous anthologies and he co-edited Inside/Outside: Six Plays from Palestine and the Diaspora (TCG ‘15). His writing has been featured in American Theatre Magazine, The Kenyon Review, The Nation, Mizna, Guernica, Al Jazeera, The Dramatist, and ReMezcla. Khalidi holds an MFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.
Seamus Wakefield, Intern (he/him/his)
Seamus Wakefield is a senior at the University of Minnesota, majoring in Global Studies with a focus on Human Rights and Justice in Europe. If all goes well, he'll be graduating by the end of the Spring 2022 semester. Born and raised in Minnesota, Seamus has always found himself gravitating towards social activism, and seeking peace for those who seldom have it. He recalls sitting on his father shoulders as a young kid, protesting the Iraq war outside of the local grocery store. As such, he grew up with the core belief of standing up for those who cannot stand for themselves, and standing in unison with those who's voices must be heard. Outside of the activism world, Seamus comes from a long line of what he calls "creators". His mother is an amazing baker and dedicated knitting/crocheting enthusiast, and his father is a top notch handyman. As a result, Seamus finds a great deal of joy bringing things to life, especially when they bring joy to others. Seamus is also the proud father of an 11 year old cat named Iris, who sees him more as a good source of warmth than a father figure, but the feeling is there. He's a self-proclaimed poet, and prone to crack a joke when times get rough. If there was one message he could spread to the world, it would be: "This is no one singular person's world. It is not yours, nor mine, but it is ours. It's time we started acting like it."
Adlyn Carreras, General Manager and Ensemble Member (she/her/hers)
Adlyn Carreras was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico. She came to St. Paul, Minnesota on scholarship to study at Macalester College, where she majored in Latin American Studies with a core concentration in Latin American Literature and a Minor in Biology. After traveling and living in Hawaii, Washington D.C., and Puerto Rico, Adlyn returned to Minnesota and began acting in the Twin Cities. She has performed at The Jungle Theater, Park Square Theater, Pangea World Theater, Mixed Blood, Penumbra Theater, and Teatro del Pueblo. She has also been in various commercials and Industrial films. Adlyn is General Manager & Ensemble Member at Pangea World Theater and an Adjunct Professor at Augsburg University. She was a past Teaching Artist for the Neighborhood Bridges program at Children’s Theater Company and Monologue Artists for Penumbra Theater’s Race Workshop. Adlyn is currently working on her first one-woman performance, If My Bones Could Speak, commissioned by the Alternate Visions program at Pangea World Theater.
Suzanne Victoria Cross, Local Coordinator and Resident Stage Manager (she/her/hers)
Suzanne Victoria Cross was born and raised in North Minneapolis, graduated from St. Cloud State University with a BA in Theater and Community Psychology. Suzanne is a local actor and teaching artist in the St. Paul and Minneapolis area. She has worked with many local theater companies including touring with CLIMB Theatre as an Actor-Educator, Penumbra Theatre Company’s Education and Outreach Program, Lyric Arts Academy, Teatro del Pueblo and has been the lead instructor for multiple teaching artist residencies in the Twin Cites. Suzanne's experience includes preforming interactive theatre productions, writing workshops, and goal-setting seminars for various art organizations. She has also worked with special populations, including individuals with physical and mental disabilities, youth treatment centers (ages 12-17), and memory care (ages 55+) along with co-conducted, written and performed interactive educational mini dramas and classes for Pre K-12. Suzanne has a strong passion for the role theatre can play in the development of an individual and a community as a whole. She is currently the Programs Coordinator and Resident Stage Manager for Pangea World Theater.
Jenny Zander, Documentation and Visual Specialist (she/her/hers & they/them/theirs)
Jenny is a body artist and photographer sharing life's beauty in the many faces, shades, and shapes it comes in, while highlighting environmental issues that impact frontline communities. Her body of work explores the relationships womxn have with their surrounding environments and the natural world because there strong connection between the violence inflicted on those who identify as female and Mother Earth. The extraction and exploitation of Earth’s wealth also parallels the displacement and colonization of black, brown and queer folks. Pangea is a circle that connects so many people, identities, and hard to face truths, Jenny is beyond thankful for this family and the change we're creating.
Sir Curtis Kirby III, Directing Fellow (he/him/his)
Sir Curtis Kirby III, Bois Forte Band of Ojibwe and African American descent is enjoying his 7th year directing the Ikidowin Youth Theater Ensemble. He has been selected as Emerging Artist for a TPT Minnesota Originals. Kirby is mentored by Dipankar Mukherjee, Artistic Director of Pangea World Theater and has participated in the Next Generation Theater Director's Institute for the past three years. This year, he has been awarded a 2 year Fellowship with Pangea World Theater for Directing. Kirby is the Assistant Director for Five Weeks, Sabra Falling and Mother Courage and Her Children. He recently directed a one-act play in New York City, 2020 Reflections of Native Voices as an emerging director.
Chloe Rohl, Intern (she/her/hers)
Chloe Rohl is a junior at the University of St. Thomas, pursuing a major in creative writing and a minor in business administration. She is a writer, poet, photographer/videographer, artist, and performer.
Her past volunteer experiences include collaborations with several non-profit organizations, such as working as a videographer for Wood Lake Nature Center (Richfield, MN), working as a graphic designer for the Chip In For Others community volunteer group (Prescott, WI), and camp-counseling with Kat Perkins’s The Rising Star Foundation (Minneapolis, MN).
Through these opportunities, she’s seen the impacts and changes community-centered work can establish firsthand, and is eager to continue this work with Pangea. She is particularly drawn to Pangea because of their commitment to the Lake Street community, as well as their cultivation of both the arts and global perspectives for the purpose of social change.
Aside from her passion for the intersection between the arts and social justice, Chloe is one of thirty Athlete Advocates in the Running With Purpose running collective program. Launched in 2021 by activist and athlete Jordan Marie Brings Three White Horses Daniel—through the Indigenous led grassroots organization Rising Hearts (Los Angeles, CA)—Running With Purpose engages with both sport and advocacy to raise awareness for various causes focused on social change.
Support Rising Hearts & Running With Purpose:
See Chloe Rohl Photography: