upcoming grant deadline: 05/15/2019

upcoming grant deadline: 05/15/2019

Na Tanyá Daviná Stewart

Natanyadavinastewart Natanyadavina  profile

Daviná is a performance artist and community organizer. As an organizer, she uses spoken word and performance art to create a sense of community where people feel comfortable talking about difficult issues, and as a link to different communities and issues important to her. She has worked with the Philadelphia Black Women's Health Project to create a performance piece to encourage dialogue about sexual abuse, and since 2004 she has worked with the non-profit organization A Long Walk Home, which uses art for social change, to produce Story of a Rape Survivor (SOARS), to help people prevent and heal from sexual violence. SOARS has traveled to over 40 cities in the past three years, with Daviná interpreting the poetry of survivors on stage. 

Daviná's art focuses on the internalization of racism, sexism, and abuses of power within the family and larger society, as well as white supremacy and systemic oppression. She uses culture as a tool in her work, often utilizing rap, double-Dutch songs, hopscotch, and chalking by altering their content and using them outside the usual context, as evidenced in her work with the Hands Off Assata Coalition in the summer of 2005. Chalking out hopscotch boxes with activist slogans, she quickly gathered the attention of young people to encourage them and their guardians to urge Congress to remove the bounty placed on exiled freedom fighter Assata Shakur. Daviná facilitates VISIONS, the teen theater program at Planned Parenthood Southeastern Pennsylvania. 

Daviná graduated from Temple University with a Bachelor of Arts degree and the Shirley Graham Du Bois Award of Excellence in African American Studies. As a teaching artist, Daviná has facilitated performance workshops for youth and adult learners at The National Civil Rights Museum and The Blues Cultural Center in Memphis, Tennessee (1996); Action AIDS Network in Johannesburg, South Africa (2002); and The People's Emergency Center Shelter (1998) and the Philadelphia Young Playwrights' Festival (2003) in Philadelphia. 

Daviná collaborated with the Nzinga Arts Collective to write, perform, and produce the multi-disciplinary piece Movement from the Margins. MFM explores race and class disparities and their impact upon the residents of the Lower 9th Ward in New Orleans as exposed by Hurricane Katrina. MFM premiered at the 2006 Philadelphia Fringe Festival and is slated for a national tour. This performance art piece is a fund-raiser for the New Orleans chapter of INCITE!, a national women of color organization working to address and end violence against women. 

Daviná assistant directed the Philadelphia premiere of Tony Kushner's musical Caroline or Change (2007) at the Arden Theatre Company. She is producing her play SCIAMACHY, and hosts a monthly performance showcase called Paradigm Shift at the Arts Garage in Philadelphia. Paradigm Shift allows Daviná to feature the work of fellow Leeway grantees and local artists. Part of the proceeds from the venue is donated to Project Home, an organization working to end homelessness in Philadelphia.




Leeway grant?

Leeway Transformation Award

The Transformation Award provides unrestricted annual awards of $15,000 to women and trans* artists and cultural producers living in greater Philadelphia who create art for social change and have done so for the past five years or more, demonstrating a long-term commitment to social change work. [read more]

deadline 05/15
Upcoming events
03/2712:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Understanding Taxes for Artists

Leeway is partnering with CultureWorks Greater Philadelphia and Vision Driven Artists for three sessions designed to help artists understand tax season!

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03/276:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Infosession at Taller Puertorriqueño

Learn more about our grant programs and application process at this information session!

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