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I got it!

Speaker

Ms Shelley Berc

Director

Culture,

Shelley Berc has been teaching people in all disciplines how to access, nurture, and expand their creativity for over 20 years. She believes that creativity is a common denominator of humanity and she is passionate about educating individuals and organizations about how to develop this uniquely human gift.

Berc emphasizes that many of the creative thinking processes that a scientist, a CEO, and an artist go through are extremely similar, even though the outcomes are as different as can be.

Berc was a full professor at the University of Iowa’s International Writing Program and the Iowa Playwrights Workshop from 1985-2000. In 2000, she left academia to dedicate herself wholly to the Creativity Workshop, which she founded in 1993 with Alejandro Fogel when they were cultural ambassadors for the United States Information Agency.

As well as being a prominent educator, Shelley Berc is a well known author of novels and plays. Her novel, The Shape of Wilderness, was published by Coffee House Press. The New York Times praised it as “a vividly imagined parable…a strange and potent book…a fantastical world of unusual sensuality and invention”. Her second novel, Light and Its Shadow, was recently published by Ethos Press. Her numerous awards include a McKnight Fellowship, two Lila Wallace/Readers Digest awards, Rockefeller/Bellagio Fellowship, National Jewish Culture Playwriting award, the prestigious two year Pew/TCG National Theatre Artists Residency, an NEA Opera/Music librettist fellowship, and an Outer Critics Circle nomination for best off-Broadway play.

Shelley Berc’s theatre pieces have starred many notable actors, such as Patrick Stewart, Stanley Tucci, and Tony Shalhoub. Her plays have been performed at the American Repertory Theatre, the Yale Rep, Seattle Rep, and Classic Stage Company among others.  She holds an MFA from the Yale School of Drama and was one of the first women to graduate from Amherst College.

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