Bedlam ♡ Jane

A Series of Post-show Talkbacks About Jane Austen, Persuasion, and More...

Bedlam talks with...

LENA YASUTAKE

Immediately following the performance:

September 18th performance @2pm | Approx 30 min

Moderator: Sarah Rose Kearns

Featuring: Lena Yasutake

Lena Ruth Yasutake is a teacher with two decades of experience in history and drama. She combines her love of history, fashion, and Austen in her costume design and rental company Cassandra’s Closet, named for Jane Austen’s beloved sister. Together with her business partner and sister-in-law Anna, she creates Regency attire from upcycled and repurposed fabric to wear and share. Lena has been interviewed about her love of Austen by The Washington Post, The Guardian, and The Daily Beast. She is a member of the JASNA Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee and she’s dedicated to bringing the joys of Austen’s writings to new, younger, and even more diverse audiences. www.cassandras-closet.com

R.B. BARTGIS

Bedlam talks with...

R.B. BARTGIS

Immediately following the performance:

September 18, 2021 @ 7pm | Approx 30 min

Moderator: Sarah Rose Kearns

Featuring: R.B. Bartgis

Ben Bartgis is a conservator technician with a background in book conservation and exhibits work based in Annapolis, MD. Outside of their career in conservation, Bartgis lectures and teaches on the material culture of literacy in the long 18th century, including quill pen cutting and historic penmanship. Having made Jane Austen’s sister-in-law’s recipe for ink – which calls for two pints of beer! – Bartgis has a lot of appreciation for the physical work it took for Austen to write all her manuscripts and letters.

JENNIFER ABELLA

Bedlam talks with...

JENNIFER ABELLA

Immediately following the performance:

September 25, 2021 @ 2pm |  Approx 30 min

Moderator: Zachary Elkind

Featuring: Jennifer Abella

Jennifer Abella is a journalist who has volunteered with the Jane Austen Summer Program in Chapel Hill/Carrboro, N.C., since 2014. Over the years, she served as the program’s blogger, social media manager and publicity chair before recently joining its board of directors. She is also on the board of the Washington, D.C., chapter of the Jane Austen Society of North America. After 25 years of waffling between “Pride & Prejudice” and “Persuasion,” she has finally decided that “Persuasion” is her favorite Austen novel.

Kathleen Flynn

Bedlam talks with...

KATHLEEN FLYNN

CANCELLED

Kathleen A. Flynn is an editor on the International Desk at The New York Times and an inveterate novel-reader. Longtime fascination with the life and work of Austen resulted in “The Jane Austen Project,” her 2017 novel exploring Austen’s hold on the collective imagination through a story of two researchers from the future who time-travel in quest of a lost manuscript and answers to the mystery of the great writer’s early death. Flynn is particularly interested in how Austen’s characters and novels get inside of us as readers, sharpening ideas about identity and fueling creative responses like historical fiction and theatrical adaptations.

Amanda-Rae Prescott

Bedlam talks with...

AMANDA-RAE PRESCOTT

Immediately following the performance:

September 26, 2021 @ 2pm | Approx 30 min

Moderator: Zachary Elkind

Featuring: Amanda-Rae Prescott

Amanda-Rae Prescott is a freelance journalist based in NYC. She has contributed reviews of Austen adaptations and other recent Regency period dramas to Den of Geek and GBH Drama Club. She is also an advocate for more diverse racial representation on stage and screen and in fandom. She can be found on Twitter @amandarprescott and amandaraeprescott.com 

JULIETTE WELLS

Bedlam talks with...

JULIETTE WELLS

Immediately following the performance:

October 2, 2021 @ 2pm | Approx 30 min

Moderator: Zachary Elkind

Featuring: Juliette Wells

Juliette Wells, Professor of Literary Studies at Goucher College, created reader-friendly 200th-anniversary annotated editions of Persuasion (2017) and Emma (2015) for Penguin Classics. She is the author of Reading Austen in America and Everybody’s Jane: Austen in the Popular Imagination.

WENDY JONES

Bedlam talks with...

WENDY JONES

Immediately following the performance:

October 2, 2021 @ 7pm | Approx 30 min

Moderator: Zachary Elkind

Featuring: Wendy Jones

Wendy Jones, a practicing psychotherapist and former English professor, writes on the connection between literature and the mind-brain sciences as well as other topics. She is the author of Jane on the Brain: Exploring the Science of Social Intelligence with Jane Austen, Consensual Fictions: Women, Liberalism, and the English Novel, and scholarly articles on eighteenth- and nineteenth-century fiction, including an essay, “Jane Austen and the Social Sciences” in the forthcoming Routledge Companion to Jane Austen.” Her blog for Psychology Today, “Intersubjective,” shows how literature elucidates various topics in psychology. 

Sayantani Dasgupta

Bedlam talks with...

SAYANTANI DASGUPTA

Immediately following the performance:

October 3, 2021 @ 2pm | Approx 30 min

Moderator: Zachary Elkind

Featuring: Sayantani DasGupta

Sayantani DasGupta is the New York Times bestselling author of the critically acclaimed, Bengali folktale and string theory-inspired Kiranmala and the Kingdom Beyond books, as well as the standalone middle grade fantasy Force of Fire. Her forthcoming YA debut, Debating Darcy, is a multicultural, modern-day reimagining of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, and has been called “fiercely feminist” and a “delightful spin on Austen’s classic.” Sayantani is a pediatrician by training, but now teaches at Columbia University. She is a team member of We Need Diverse Books, and can be found online at sayantanidasgupta.com and on Twitter at @sayantani16.

Regency period illustration of people with strange hats

Bedlam talks with...

EMILY KUGLER

Immediately following the performance:

October 9, 2021 @ 7pm | Approx 30 min

Moderator: Zachary Elkind

Featuring: Emily Kugler

Emily MN Kugler, an assistant professor of English at an HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities), introduces Howard University students to Jane Austen as a key author in the study of women writers and readers in the Atlantic World. In her classes, Austen is read alongside the works of abolitionist activists, Caribbean novelists, and present-day consumer culture. During the pandemic, she is frequently found online, playing video games and Dungeons & Dragons with Dr. Friedman. They are working on a series of articles and videos related to their Playing the 18th Century project, to share their research on Austen and other period-inspired games. She can be found on Twitter @emnk, emilymnkugler.com, and https://www.youtube.com/criticalprof.

Janet Saidi

Bedlam talks with...

JANET SAIDI

Immediately following the performance:

October 22, 2021 @ 7pm | Approx 30 min

Moderator: Zachary Elkind

Featuring: Janet Saidi

Janet “Plain Jane” Saidi is the writer and host of The Austen Connection, a free newsletter and podcast featuring conversations about how Austen’s stories connect to us today and connect us to each other.  Janet is a producer, adjunct journalism professor, and host at an NPR-affiliate newsroom in Missouri. She’s also written and produced stories for NPR, PBS, the BBC and BBC World Service, the Los Angeles Times and has written many book reviews for the Christian Science Monitor. The Austen Connection podcast has featured Unmarriageable author Soniah Kamal, The Ripped Bodice bookstore co-owners Bea Koch and Leah Koch, scholar and author Gretchen Gerzina, professor and Jane Austen & Co. co-host Danielle Christmas, scholar and author Devoney Looser, and biographer Claire Tomalin. In 2014 and 2016, Janet co-produced two journalism-on-the-stage theater productions with playwright Michelle Tyrene Johnson: “Justice in the Embers” at Kansas City’s Living Room Theatre, which won a Midwest Innocence Project award; and “The Green Duck Lounge,” with MU Theatre. Janet began her public-media work at KPBS in San Diego, where she co-produced and co-hosted a live, nightly talk show called The Lounge, and served as an editor for Southern California’s Gay & Lesbian Times and Uptown Newsmagazine. At her NPR-affiliate in Missouri, Janet has executive-produced many projects that seek to build community through audio, oral histories, and conversation – and this is also the aim of The Austen Connection, where she hopes to find you and hear all your thoughts on Jane Austen! 

Georgi Castilla

Bedlam talks with...

GEORGIE CASTILLA

Immediately following the performance:

October 24, 2021 @ 2pm | Approx 30 min

Moderator: Zachary Elkind

Featuring: Georgie Castilla

Georgie Castilla is a NYC-based lyricist, production designer, and costume designer for film and theatre, and a freelance comic artist and illustrator. He is the founder of Duniath Comics and creator of Regency era–inspired webcomics “Garden of the Year”, “What Would Jane Do?”, and “Spinsterly Ever After,” as well as the LGBTQ+ slice-of-life strip “Your Sense & My Sensibility.” Georgie is a member of the Jane Austen Society of North America (JASNA) Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee, as well as the ad hoc Search Committee tasked with finding an Ombudsperson to assist JASNA members regarding EDI concerns.