Artistic Director | Co-Founder
Simone is an artist, educator, and scholar whose process is deeply rooted in care for the weight of the work, those who help make it, and those who receive it. Her vision for Centrifuge Arts arose from a firm belief that art born of rigorous process, profound empathy, and genuine collaboration is critical to developing integrity-driven work-- work that has the potential to activate global citizenship and disseminate cultural ideas that call individuals to effectively and ethically respond to the social, political, economic, ecological and technological crises that face our world today.
The writer and director of Letters to the Universe (2020), Through the Looking Glass (2016) and Symphony of the Fourth Dimension (2015), Simone’s work has included productions, workshops, and readings at Griffith Observatory, Japanese American National Museum, ARK Theater, Odyssey Theatre, Buena Park Youth Theatre, Abrons Arts Center, Access Theatre, THEATERLAB and FIGMENT Festival. Her teaching artist residencies have included partnerships with the BRIDGE Theatre Project, ArtworxLA, and Bard Early College High School. Simone previously served as Artistic Director at Twilight Park’s Summer Program and has taught on faculty at Wildwood Elementary, Michelle Danner Acting Studio, Temple Israel of Hollywood Day School, and the Abrons Arts Center.
Simone has been a selected participant for Carnegie Hall's Music Educators Workshop, Creative Capital Summer Intensive, and Directors Lab West. She participated in workshops on diversity, equity and inclusion work with Courageous Conversations Academy and studied intimacy direction and consent with IDC Professionals. Simone holds a BFA in Drama from NYU and is a participant in the 2020 Women’s Leadership Program through the Yale School of Management. She is a proud member of SciArt Initiative, Level Ground Collective, and Contemporary Performance Network.
Executive Director | Co-Founder
Rich Johnson is a performing artist, social entrepreneur, and creative technologist with a passion for synthesizing information and ideas into creative action, and bringing the arts to all. For Rich, Centrifuge Arts has become a pathway for bringing his artistry, technical expertise, and diverse work experience together towards the development of creative projects that explore his never ending curiosities.
The creative force behind recent projects including FOUR WALLS (2020) and Letters to the Universe (2020), Rich has worked on and off stage at venues in New York and Los Angeles including Radio City Music Hall, Abrons Arts Center, Harvestworks, National 9/11 Memorial Museum, Walt Disney Concert Hall, and at festivals including BEAT Festival and the NY Fringe Festival. He has been a freelance sound designer for Atlantic Theater Company, Exquisite Corpse Company, and Blessed Unrest.
Rich studied clarinet with Alan R. Kay at the Hartt School of Music, where he was a music education major, and holds a B.M. in music technology from NYU. He was a 2014 Create Change Fellow through The Laundromat Project, a selected participant in Carnegie Hall's Music Educators Workshop for the 2014-2016 seasons, and is currently a 2020 ACTIVATE Fellow through Arts for LA.
Our work has been supported by the SciArt Initiative, NYU Tisch, Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute, 92Y Harkness Dance Center, Fractured Atlas, Fieldwork NYC, Spaceworks Long Island City, The Clearing, and The Level Ground Collective. We would like to extend a sincere thank you to these organizations, as well as our many donors, for their generous support.