Elaine Hall ‘Coach E!’ referenced by the New York Times as the “Child Whisperer,” is a pioneer in using inclusive theater, film, music and movement to bring out the best in individuals of all abilities. She has worked as an on-set acting coach for Walt Disney Studios, Universal Pictures, Nickelodeon, as well as being the star of the Emmy Award winning HBO documentary, AUTISM: The Musical based on her groundbreaking theater program, The Miracle Project. The United Nations chose her memoir, Now I See the Moon, for World Autism Awareness Day; her second book, Seven Keys to Unlock Autism is used as text book at universities including Brown as part of the ASaP class. Internationally renowned, she has received honors from numerous organizations, has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe, The New York Times, Italy’s Vogue Magazine and has been seen on CNN, HBO, CBS Morning News, Oprah Winfrey Network, and heard on NPR, to name a few.
Her students, once too shy and withdrawn to even walk into a room of their peers, have now found their voice, developed their talents, made friendships and become part of a creative, dynamic community. Some have performed live in front of thousands, receiving international notoriety as performers, held guest-starring roles in TV and film including the TV shows Parenthood and Speechless; written songs for and recorded an album, been honored at Carnegie Hall, performed at The United Nations, the White House, and have even appeared on stage with Jack Black, Stephen Stills, and Neil Young and at high-profile events throughout Los Angeles. Most importantly, they have made lasting friendships with those with and without disabilities.
Her son, who is non-verbal is a semi-professional model, organic gardener and has ‘spoken’ via IPad at the United Nations.
Elaine’s evidence-based methods are replicable and are being requested internationally. Currently, she is creating original musicals with her Los Angeles Team, as well as offers life coaching for young adults on the spectrum, parent coaching, keynote speeches, on-line classes, workshops and trainings. She is excited to be working with such an amazing team at Brown and bringing her methods to New England.
Dr. Barry Prizant is recognized as one of the leading scholars in autism spectrum disorders and communication disabilities, with more than 40 years experience as a researcher and international consultant for individuals with autism and related disabilities. He is a certified Speech-Language Pathologist, an Adjunct Professor at Brown University, and Director of Childhood Communication Services, a private practice. Formerly, he was a Professor of Communication Disorders at Emerson College and Associate Professor of Psychiatry in the Brown University Medical School. Publications include four books, 130 chapters and articles and The SCERTS Model manuals, an educational approach now being implemented in more than a dozen countries. Barry has presented more than 800 seminars and keynote addresses internationally, and for the past 20 years, he has co-developed and co-facilitated an annual retreat weekend for parents of family members on the autism spectrum. Barry has received many honors including the 2014 Honors of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, their highest honor, 2005 Princeton University-Eden Career Award in autism, and the 2013 Divine Neurotypical Award of GRASP (Global Regional Asperger Syndrome Partnership). His new book is Uniquely Human: A Different Way of Seeing Autism (Simon & Schuster, 2015).
Julie Adams Strandberg is Senior Lecturer and founding director of dance in the Brown University Department of Theatre Arts and Performance Studies and co-founder of the American Dance Legacy Initiative housed at the John Nicholas Brown Center for Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage and co-founder of ASaP. The four primary goals of Julie’s research are,
1) to provide dancers with holistic, multi-faceted ways in which to be artists in our culture,
2) to advocate for the inclusion of the arts, and particularly dance, in the education of EVERY child,
3) to make connections between her work within the university and the broader culture, and
4) to develop and design materials and programs that provide broad access to dance as an art form to all persons, including pre-professional and professional dancers; students in grades K-university; neurodiverse populations (often denied access to the arts); and the general public.
Rachel Balaban received her BA from Brown University and has returned as an Adjunct Lecturer in Brown’s Department of Theatre Arts and Performance Studies (TAPS). She is co-founder and co-director of Artists and Scientists as Partners (ASaP), at Brown where she advocates for arts in healthcare and facilitates studies of the theory and engagement with the practice of the arts in healing.
Rachel continues to train at the Mark Morris Dance Group in Dance for PD (Parkinson’s Disease). She is Dance for PD Coordinator for Connecticut and Rhode Island and regularly teaches People with Parkinson’s and their caregivers. She also teaches Dance for the Aging Population (DAPpers) at Brown for people with movement challenges. Rachel is committed to helping people access their vitality and health through the use of their own bodies and to make dance accessible to all populations. She leads movement workshops for schools, faculty, foundations, corporations, hospitals and other healthcare facilities.