The honorees will be celebrated during a gala on Aug. 16. A discussion featuring Nottage and Valdez, who will explore the important role of the arts in implementing social change, will be presented Aug. 17. The discussion, partnered by the Clinton School of Public Service, is free and open to the community.
Nottage is an OBIE and Outer Critics Circle award-winning playwright whose works include Intimate Apparel (produced at The Rep in 2006), Crumbs from the Table of Joy, Las Meninas and Fabulation, or the Re-Education of Undine.
Valdez is the founder and artistic director of El Teatro Campesino, which prompted a national Chicano theatre movement. The Presidential Medal for the Arts recipient also wrote and directed the film "La Bamba" as well as Broadway's Zoot Suit.
The gala celebration is the culmination of the two-week residency program Voices at the River, which features four new works developed during the residency. The works include Parked by Vanessa Garcia; Breathe by Javon Johnson; We Lost it at the Movies (With a Special Appearance by Rock Hudson) by Guillermo Reyes; and Almost September by Ajene D. Washington.
The directors for the residency include Erma Duricko, Rajendra Maharaj and Phillip E. Walker. Sybil Roberts and Elaine Romero are dramaturgs for the project. The Arkansas Repertory Theatre was founded in 1976 and is the state's largest nonprofit professional theatre company with more than 280 productions, including 40 world premieres.
For tickets and detailed scheduling information, visit www.therep.org.