The Gathering 2016 – Innovation

Innovation The Gathering 2016

Innovation: Radical Dreams for the Real World

In 2016, Gathering participants will explore their own potential for innovation by exploring new fields, and listening to people who have taken radical leaps into new art forms, new technology, new ventures, and in their private lives. The program will feature writers, artists, scientists, philosophers, and entrepreneurs who have broken through established ways of thinking to change the world in ways large and small. The aim of Radical Dreams for the Real World is to inspire and challenge participants to break new ground in their creative lives.


Martine Rothblatt

Martine Rothblatt, Ph.D., MBA, J.D. is a lawyer, entrepreneur, and medical ethicist. In 1990 she founded and served as Chairman and CEO of Sirius Satellite Radio (now Sirius XM). When her daughter was diagnosed with a rare disease, Martine left Sirius to search for a cure. She founded United Therapeutics in 1996 and has since served as Chairman and co-CEO. Martine is also a leading legal advocate for human rights and has led the IBA in presenting the UN with a draft treaty on the genome.

Real Dreams for the Radical World – A Conversation about Digital Mortality and Breaking Other Barriers

Pamela Muñoz RyanPamela Muñoz Ryan has written over forty books for young people, and is the recipient of the National Education Association’s Human and Civil Rights Award, the Virginia Hamilton Literary Award, the Willa Cather Award, the Pura Belpré medal, the PEN USA award and many others. Her novels include Esperanza Rising, Becoming Naomi León, Riding Freedom, Paint the Wind, The Dreamer, and most recently, ECHO, a 2016 Newbery Honor Book, winner of the Kirkus Prize, and a New York Times Best Seller. She was born and raised in Bakersfield, California, holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree from San Diego State University and lives near San Diego with her family.

Dreams, Downfall, and Starting Over

James BecketJames Becket brings a varied career to his film making: developmental economist, human rights lawyer, international civil servant, journalist and author. He wrote the first Amnesty International Report on Torture and, as Director of Public Information for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, made several films about refugee problems around the world, which he followed with other documentary and educational films, notably on health issues and the environment. He has also directed feature films, television movies, and continues to write scripts and direct movies. His awards include festival Best Film Awards, two Humanitas Awards, and a George Foster Peabody Award.

Is this the Golden Age of Documentary Films? A filmmaker takes us through the steps of making a documentary using his current project The Seeds of Vandana Shiva, and discusses the role of independent documentary in today’s media landscape.


Christopher ImpeyChristopher Impey is a professor and deputy head of the Department of Astronomy at the University of Arizona. His astronomy research focuses on observational cosmology—using telescopes and other instruments to study the large-scale structure and evolution of the universe. He also does research on education and science literacy.

Our Future Off-Earth

Jason P. VestJason P. Vest is professor of English & Applied Linguistics at the University of Guam. He is the author of Future Imperfect: Philip K. Dick at the Movies (Praeger Press, 2007; Bison Books, 2009), The Postmodern Humanism of Philip K. Dick (Scarecrow Press, 2009), “The Wire,” “Deadwood,” Homicide,” and “NYPD Blue”: Violence is Power (Praeger Press, 2010), and Spike Lee: Finding the Story and Forcing the Issue (Praeger Press, 2014). He lives and works in Mangilao, Guam.


Off-Center, Off-Kilter, Off-World: Philip K. Dick’s Radical Dreamscapes

Gail Carson LevineGail Carson Levine’s poems have appeared in The Louisville Review and The Sugar House Review, and one is forthcoming in The New York Quarterly. They’ve been anthologized in Bigger Than They Appear: Anthology of Very Short Poems; the second volume of The Cancer Poetry Project; and On the Dark Path, An Anthology of Fairy Tale Poetry. She has just completed her MFA in Poetry at New York University, and her debut collection, Transient, will be published by in July by Keystone College’s Nightshade Press. Levine is also a children’s book writer, best known for her novel, Ella Enchanted, which won a Newbery honor medal in 1998. She and her husband David and their Airedale Reggie live in an eighteenth-century farmhouse in Brewster, NY.

Poetry Reading and My Life as a Poet


Emirhan Tunca

Emirhan Tunca was born in Istanbul, Turkey, into a family of musicians. He began studying the cello at age eight at Istanbul State Conservatory. In 2011, he was accepted into the studio of Professor Marion Feldman at the New York University Steinhardt School, where he received both his Master’s and Artist Diploma in Cello Performance in 2015. Since his debut at age eleven with the Istanbul State Symphony Orchestra, Emirhan has appeared in numerous concerts and recitals in Europe and the United States, as well as national and international competitions. He recently made his debut at Carnegie Hall performing Elgar’s Cello Concerto as a soloist with the New York Concerti Sinfonietta. His awards and honors include: NYU String Competition, New York, 1st Prize; Associated Music Teachers League, New York, Grand Prize Winner;International Young Musicians Classical Music Competition, Edirne, Turkey, 1st Prize; International Young Musicians Competition, Bari, Italy, 1st Prize; International Young Virtuosos Competition, Sofia, Bulgaria, 1st Prize. He has participated in masterclasses and worked with many of the most eminent cellists of our time, including Yo-Yo Ma, Maria Kliegel, Claus Kanngiesser, Peter Bruns, Jens Peter Maintz, Lazlo Fenyo, Daniel Muller Schott, Antonio Meneses, Wolfgang Boettcher, and Alexander Rudin.

Nadia Naismith Dailey and Robert NaismithNadia Naismith Dailey joined her father, Roert Naismith, in their first joint business venture after she earned a degree in finance at Drexel University. Over the past 16 years, they have founded three successful enterprises, including JUJAMA, a mobile networking platform that allows colleagues to collaborate on work for professional events.

Robert Naismith is a geneticist and businessman who co-founded the Commonwealth Medical College, a new and fully accredited allopathic medical school that serves northeastern Pennsylvania. He has founded and run several successful businesses, including Life Science Analytics ,Pharmakon Research International, Biofor, Microp Cap, and JUJUMA, the professional networking company he founded with his daughter Nadia Dailey. He holds a PhD in genetics from Pennsylvania State University.

Father and Daughter Talk about Building Dreams into Businesses


Renee JonesRenee Jones combines a degree in psychology with a master’s in education, master reiki status, black belt in kung fu, and yoga training to create accessible yoga classes for everybody. She prides herself in generating a positive, accepting space where each person can find his or her best and highest good. She does not believe that it is a radical notion that all people can benefit and enjoy yoga. Get ready for real yoga and real people for real results. Namaste.

Yoga in the Morning (Saturday and Sunday)


Ty Defoe is a writer, performer, and educator who from a deep well of knowledge from the Giixhiig, Onieda, and Ojibwe Nations, distilled and refined over many generations, yielding a profound sense of the universality of the human spirit and its inclination toward harmony, balance, beauty, peace, and the sacred. Through movement and dance, sound, and music, he conveys this universal spirit through stories, music, and dance.



William Black

Friday Workshop: The Rudiments of Prose Innovation

Novelist Marilynne Robinson says that structure provides us with opportunities for freedom.  This is, perhaps unexpectedly, especially true of so-called experimental fiction and nonfiction.

This workshop will introduce writers to the relationship of structure and freedom at the heart of radical innovations in literary form dating back to the birth of Romanticism and provide opportunities for practice.

Saturday Workshop: Beyond Unreliable
What exactly is an unreliable narrator, and why would a writer choose to use one? This workshop will introduce to participants the uses, historical origins, time-honored conventions, and radical variations of the fabled unreliable narrator.

Getting Your Writing Out There

Workshop: Perfecting Your Pitch:  Polishing Queries and Tweets to Connect with Agents and Editors – Kelly Ann Hopkins


Gail Carson Levine, Amanda J. Bradley, and Raymond P. Hammond

Friday Workshop: Poetry Dreaming
Gail Levine, Amanda J. Bradley, and Raymond Hammond lead a workshop that begins with a brief panel discussion of radical ways to view poetry, then turns attention to the participants’ work through innovative prompts in small groups, and finally re-convenes everyone in a dreamy writing setting that will allow the participants to tap into their own unconscious.

Saturday Workshop: Imagining Imagery
Gail Levine, Amanda J. Bradley, and Raymond Hammond lead a workshop that begins with a brief panel discussion of the centrality of imagery to good poetry. Participants will then work through writing prompts that help them develop images and poems from those images. 


Workshop: Innovation in 3-D Artmaking – James Harmon

KC3D logoA tour with demonstrations of the Keystone College Visual Arts program Glass and 3-D Center.


Workshop: Exploring the Radical Dream: An Introduction to Augusto Boal’s Theater of the Oppressed – Nellie Perera
In this workshop, participants will identify a societal oppression that requires radical action to address. Using Boal techniques including Image Theater and role-play, the group will explore possible solutions, and play their way towards the ideal. No acting experience necessary! Please come in comfortable clothing and be ready to move.

Game Development

Workshop: Creating Games – Matthew Cirba and Robert Nardelli

A hands-on computer workshop on developing games for entertainment and practical applications


Workshop: Native Music and Movement -Ty Defoe


Reading List

Reading List - Virtually HumanReading List - Beyond Our Future in SpaceReading List - EchoDoAndroidsDream (2)transient_cover (2)