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Representation & Responsibility: Racial and Gender Equity in Film and Television

Opera Theatre St. Louis Event Image
  • January 20
  • 1 p.m.
  • Regional Arts Commission
  • Free

Thanks for joining us for the second installment of Opera Theatre's 2019 Representation & Responsibility series on Sunday, January 20, at 1 p.m. This community conversation focused on the topic of racial and gender equity in film and television.


Kasi Lemmons

A native of St. Louis, Kasi Lemmons has been acting, writing, and directing for 40 years. She has written and directed films including Eve's Bayou (1997), starring Samuel L. Jackson, and Talk to Me (2007), starring Don Cheadle, and her film Harriet about the life of Harriet Tubman is set to be released in 2019. Some of the stars of Harriet include Cynthia Erivo, Janelle Monáe, and Leslie Odom Jr. She wrote the libretto for Opera Theatre's 2019 world premiere Fire Shut Up in My Bones.

Colleen McGuinness

Colleen McGuinness has written for numerous television shows, including NBC's Emmy-winning 30 Rock, for which she also received Emmy, WGA, and PGA award nominations. She most recently served as a consulting producer on Amazon's Forever, starring Maya Rudolph and Fred Armisen, and is now a co-executive producer on Stargirl, an upcoming series for the DC Comics streaming service. She has developed pilots with Tina Fey, Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, HBO, and F/X, and is currently creating a show with Reese Witherspoon producing, based on the Curtis Sittenfeld book You Think It, I'll Say It. McGuinness graduated cum laude in English from Harvard University and lives in Los Angeles with her husband Blake, son James, and dog Elaine.

Cat Neville

Catherine Neville is the producer of St. Louis's own nationally syndicated television series TasteMAKERS and host of Feast TV on KETC. She co-created Sauce Magazine in the early 2000s and launched Feast Magazine in 2010.

Sherry Sissac (Moderator)

Sherry Sissac serves as deputy director for the Regional Arts Commission of St. Louis, where she is responsible for organizational planning and development. She has worked for industry leading companies such as advertising giant Leo Burnett USA and Weber Shandwick, a global public relations firm. Sissac has also held positions as anchor and public affairs talk show host for ABC network affiliate KDNL in St. Louis and guest correspondent roles with various digital media outlets. Sissac previously operated a Chicago-based communications management consultancy serving entrepreneurs, nonprofits, and corporate clients. Her community involvement spans over 25 years with a critical focus on the well-being of children and fostering economic development for under-resourced communities.