A Festival 100 Years in the Making
On October 1, 2019, The New School kicks off The Festival of New, celebrating the university’s ground-breaking legacy that started 100 years ago. Running from October 1 to 6, this massive Centennial celebration brings together the university’s strong traditions in academic excellence, innovation, creativity, and devotion to social good and social change to create a truly quintessential New School event for one of the most iconoclastic and spirited universities in the world.
In true New School tradition, the festival is a collaborative effort involving all parts of the university — the university’s five schools, centers and institutes, libraries, archives, exhibition spaces, and administrative divisions — to create a unique experience that draws on The New School’s history and looks to its future. All events are free and open to the public, from the multiartist alumni concert in Union Square Park to the zine-making workshops to the Dialogues on the New series with thought leaders Tarana Burke, Miki and Radha Agrawal, Shaun King, Naomi Wadler, and Elaine Welteroth to performances including John Zorn and Laurie Anderson, 400 Years of Inequality Presents the Cotton Series. Participants will be able to watch Andrew McCabe, former director of the FBI, sit down with journalist Carl Bernstein, stay up from sunset to sunrise with A Night of Philosophy featuring John Cage’s MUSICIRCUS, and enjoy performances that draw on the university’s legacy such as Martha Graham and Modernism: Trauma, Interdiction, and Agency in “The House of Pelvic Truth.”
The decision to make all events free was a consideration from the start. According to Ashley Bruni, chair of the Centennial Working Group, “we did not want to put a barrier on attendance since it’s important for us to include not only our students, alumni, faculty and staff, but also their friends and family as well as the larger New York community in this celebration. Though we did offer priority register to students and alumni to ensure they had their first pick of events, and we are thrilled to see such high registration numbers from these groups.” While there is no cost to attend, guests — including New School members — are required to register as a security measure and to sign up for events as many have limited seating.
The Festival of New kicks off with a lively Opening Ceremony, which features all five school deans — William Milberg (The New School for Social Research), Rachel Schreiber (Parsons School of Design), Mary Watson (Schools of Public Engagement), Stephanie Browner (Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts), and Richard Kessler (College of Performing Arts) sharing the stage with Student Senate leads Claire Stevens and Gustavo Sampaio, together with university President David E. Van Zandt and Provost Tim Marshall, for an engaging discussion emceed by Drama students Jazmyn Boone and Nigel Barnes.
The festival also draws on the university’s broad alumni base, bringing back former students including Julio Torres ‘11, Anna Sui ‘84, Dr. Ruth Westheimer ‘59, Donna Karan ‘87, Derek Lam ‘90, James Francies ‘17, Jillian Hervey ‘11, Morgan Saint ‘16, and Brian Marsella ‘00, to share their creative insights and talents through performances and discussions.
Scroll through the slideshow above to see some of the incredible events happening during The Festival of New and don’t forget to register here.