WestportREADS 2018: Reflecting on WAR STORIES: A Veterans Project

Saturday, Jan 27, 2018 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM


This panel discussion brings together veterans and the creative team that created the performance work War Stories, to discuss the process and the integration of veterans back into society. The panel features Peter Van Heerden, creator of the project and Executive Director of The Quick Center for the Arts at Fairfield University, as well as artist Nina Bentley, writer Sonya Huber and the veterans from the project to tell their stories.

Note location: Westport VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars,) 465 Riverside Ave, Westport, CT 06880

Guide to the WestportREADS books and program.


War Stories is a devised performance work created in collaboration with 16 homeless veterans from ARBI/Homes for the Brave. Using "Courageous Storytelling" as an entry point, this important and timely project employs and empowers a core group of homeless Veterans to develop a full-length performance work, War Stories.


Peter Van Heerden has served as Executive Director of the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts since 2015. Van Heerden, a Westport resident, came to the Quick Center from The Westport Arts Center, a nonprofit visual and performing arts organization where he also served as Executive Director. Prior to that post, he spent 15 years as a Senior Faculty Member in Performance Studies at City Varsity School of Media and Creative Arts in Cape Town, South Africa. He also founded and served as Artistic Director of ERF 81 Cultural Collective, in which artists, performers, historians, educators and other generate projects vested in the culture and heritage of contemporary South Africa.

Nina Bentley, a graduate of the University of Wisconsin, has exhibited her work in Europe and the U.S. for over 40 years. Her sculpture is included in the permanent collection of the New Britain Art Museum of American Art in New Britain, CT. She directed the Rye Art Center in Rye, NY; ran a gallery and has served on the boards of the Silvermine Artists Guild and the Westport Arts Center. She lived in Europe and South America for 15 years and currently resides in Westport, CT.

Sonya Huber is the author of three books of creative nonfiction, Opa Nobody and Cover Me: A Health Insurance Memoir, and the new essay collection Pain Woman Takes Your Keys and Other Essays from a Nervous System. Her other books include The Evolution of Hillary Rodham Clinton and a textbook, The Backwards Research Guide for Writers. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, Creative Nonfiction, Brevity, Fourth Genre, and other journals. She teaches at Fairfield University and directs Fairfield’s Low-Residency MFA Program.

WestportREADS is funded by the estate of Jerry A. Tishman.


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