Lotus Rising artistically supports the narratives of Southeast Asians and Southeast Asian Americans, particularly those affected by the diaspora, who reside in Northwest Arkansas. Youth and young adults are invited to share their own narratives and collect narratives from their elders through an innovative collaboration of traditional Southeast Asian drama and Western theatre devising practices. Collected and shared narratives will become an original theatre performance for the community.
The daughter of a Cambodian refugee and a Vietnam Veteran, Simone Cottrell is a multidisciplinary theatre-maker in Fayetteville, Arkansas. As the former Outreach Director with The Artist’s Laboratory Theatre, Simone led programs with the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks, Marshallese Educational Initiative, A+ Residency, Teen Action Support Center, and other regional partners. Simone earned her B.A. in Communication-Theatre from Mississippi State University (MSU) in 2008 and then trained at Lexington Children’s Theatre. She later studied English-creative writing at MSU and received training at Martha’s Vineyard Institute for Creative Writing. Simone has held positions with MSU’s College of Arts & Sciences, Trike Theatre, and served as a teaching artist and director for various youth theatre projects. Simone is an Artist INC Fellow, a finalist for 2018 Artists 360, and was nominated by the Tishman Review for the 2016 PEN America/Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize for Emerging Writers.