Katy Rubin

Katy Rubin

Founder & Executive Director | Theater of the Oppressed NYC

Katy Rubin is founder and Executive Director of Theatre of the Oppressed NYC, an organization that partners with communities facing discrimination to spark transformative action through theatre. TONYC has popularized and developed the practice of Legislative Theatre in the United States since 2013, bringing together elected officials, advocates, service providers and communities experiencing injustice, and impacting legislation and institutional policy throughout NYC. She has facilitated and directed Forum and Legislative Theater workshops and performances in partnership with various communities including homeless adults; LGBT homeless teens; people living with HIV/AIDS; immigrants; and justice-involved youth and adults. Katy trained with Augusto Boal at the Center for Theatre of the Oppressed—Rio de Janeiro, and later with Jana Sanskriti in India, Mind the Gap in Yorkshire and Cardboard Citizens in London. She has trained facilitators in Nicaragua, the Netherlands, Norway and New Orleans as well as NYC. She holds a BFA in Acting from the Boston University School of Theater and is an alumni of Coro Leadership New York.

Why do you believe innovations in participatory democracy are important?

I believe democracy needs to be accessible, inclusive, responsive and fun – even irresistible – or we (the people, the citizens) will continue to lose power and lose our rights. Where we’ve gotten so far is good, but it’s not inclusive, accessible or fun enough yet…

What do you hope to see at the 2018 Innovations in Participatory Democracy Conference?

Young people! Radical new practices in participatory democracy. Games, art, fun.