Dr. Amma Y. Ghartey-Tagoe Kootin (a.k.a. Dr. Amma) is a *scholartist of African Diaspora performance who practices and studies history on the stage, in film, and on television. She creates artistic works based on archival research and writes about late 19th century black performance. Dr. Amma’s creative research has appeared nationally and internationally at festivals, conferences, and in academic journals; and has garnered numerous awards including a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship, a Ford Foundation Fellowship, a Harvey Fellowship (Mustard Seed Foundation), and an American Philosophical Society Fellowship. With an A.B. in Afro-American Studies from Harvard University and an M.A., Ph.D. in Performance Studies from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, she bridges the worlds of academia and arts/entertainment also having worked for A&E Networks/The History Channel, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and National History Day, Inc. In 2006, her educational work for The History Channel's Peabody-award winning documentary Save Our History: Voices of Civil Rights received the Beacon Award, cable television’s highest honor for public affairs. Her current projects are an historical musical about black performers in the 1901 world’s fair entitled, At Buffalo, and a book about the relation between laughter and the American slave experience, entitled Laughing after Slavery: The Performances and Times of Laughing Ben Ellington. Recently, The History Channel selected Dr. Amma to join the ranks of Ang Lee and Gloria Estefan as one of 37 extraordinary immigrants/children of immigrants whose stories are featured currently at Ellis Island’s Museum of Immigration in New York. Website: www.atbuffalomusical.com. *The term scholartist was coined by performance studies colleague Joseph Shahadi.
Joint appointment with the Institute for African American Studies