As a playwright, actor,and teaching artist, Arlene views her work as an artistic extension of the social justice work she has been committed to for the last twenty-five years. These autobiographical works look at the intersection of disability culture and the world at large. She believes that these experiences have allowed her a view of ethnocentrism from a unique perspective. She has performed her critically-acclaimed solo shows across the country and abroad.
Honors & Awards: 3Arts Theater Award, twice-nominated. O’Neill Playwrights Conference. Semi-Finalist. Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. Bodies of Work & 3Arts Fellowship. Awardee. Blue Ink Award. Semi-Finalist, American Blues Theater. New Plays from the Heartland, Finalist, Heartland Theater. Theater Ovations Award. Nominated- LA Stage Alliance. Garland Award. Nominated. Backstage West. In The Works Theater Grant. Awardee. Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs. As an actor, she has appeared on stages in Chicago and LA including “Love Person” at Victory Gardens and “The Music of the Spheres” at the Goodman Theatre. As a teaching artist, she has worked at Chicago Dramatists and Victory Gardens Theater and has conducted Master Classes at colleges nationwide. She is a Resident Playwright at Chicago Dramatists since 2008 and an Associate Artist at 16th Street Theater in Berwyn, Illinois.
As an actor, she has performed on stages in LA and Chicago including Goodman, 16th Street, and Victory Gardens. She has been an Artist in Residence at 16th Street Theater and Quad City Arts Program. As a storyteller, she has performed all over Chicago & LA. Taught at College of the Canyons, Victory Gardens and Master-classes nationwide. She is a Resident Playwright at Chicago Dramatists where she has designed the Solo & Story curriculum and designed, developed, and mentor the Chicago Dramatists ACCESS Fellowship designed to support Deaf/disabled writers.
Her newest solo show, “A Little Bit Not Normal,” chronicles her journey through mental illness, naming it, claiming it, and standing to be counted. It is the cornerstone of her 5-year initiative to become part of the national conversation around the stigma of mental illness.
- Master class on "solo writing & performing" with UIC theatre majors. Part of 3Arts & BOW Deaf/Disability Fellowship.
- Solo show performance A Little Bit Not Normal(A Serious Comedy About Depression) - Lewis University
- Mentor for Senior thesis UIC theatre student
Multimedia immersive performance with NonOp. Open Opera Works. "On The Cusp" Curated by Christophe Preissing
Tongues by Sam Shepard. Percussionist- Steve Butters. Video designer- Theo Economides
Chicago Dramatists- Student Feedback Session
This is a feedback session with tha audience and students from the Page To Stage. Final performance
Performing solo work at the Ragdale Ring
I curated The Ragdale Foundations Summer Outdoors Arts Series.
Featured reader at "Chicago Story Press" Virtual Book Launch- Covid Style
My Work was published n the anthology "True Stories About Love"