Introducing “The Telling Project”
Jonathan Wei, the founder and director of The Telling Project, is a playwright, writer and producer. Jonathan’s dramatic work has been staged at the Guthrie Theater, Library of Congress; Maryland Center for the Performing arts; The Alley Theater in Houston, Texas; and Portland Centre Stage in Portland, Oregon among others. His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in the Village Voice, Iowa Review, and the North American Review and Glimmer Train, and his work featured by the New York Times, Washington Post, Baltimore Sun, Inside Higher Ed, the Associated Press, and National Public Radio. He has received support from the Bob Woodruff Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, the Smithsonian Institute, the Library of Congress, Metabolic Studios, Minnesota Humanities Center, Humanities Iowa, Oregon Humanities Center and others. Jonathan lives with his family in Austin, Texas.
The Telling Project began with Jonathan Wei working with a veteran’s student discussion group in order to help them have meaningful conversations about their experiences. This discussion has led to a national performing arts non-profit that employs theater to deepen our understanding of the military and veterans’ experience. Greater understanding fosters receptivity, easing veterans’ transitions back to civil society, and allowing communities to benefit from the skills and experience they bring with them. Through this understanding, a community deepens its connection to its veterans, itself, and its place in the nation and the world.
Since 2008, The Telling Project has produced 40+ original performances, put over 180 veterans and family members on stage and performed in 16 states across the nation. The cast members are all local veterans where the production is being presented. So far productions have been in Washington DC, Baltimore, New York, Houston, San Francisco, Minneapolis, Denver, Austin, San Antonio, Tampa Bay, San Antonio and many other locations plus more are scheduled.
Jonathan will be involving five veterans from the local San Antonio cast in his presentation.
The Telling Project will soon be launching a new forum for veterans to tell their stories. It is called “Planting the Oar.”