Saturday Series

Saturday Series: Inclusion in the Arts – Julio Montalvo Valentin

This Saturday, June 13, 2020 at 8pm EDT, poet Julio Valentin joins ITOWNY’s Special Series on inclusion in the arts! This week we’ll also discuss social justice issues and their impact on the arts.

The event, as always, is free and open to the public. ALL are welcome!! Hope to see you there!!

(For the safety of our visitors, the link to the event will be posted in the comments of this post at 7pm on 6/13)

More about Julio:

Julio Montalvo Valentin (they/them) is the author of three chapbooks, Those Who Pray to Rice (NightBallet Press, 2019), Don’t Give up the Ship and Ship Lost (CWP Press, 2016; 2017). Julio was a guest editor for Mutata Re, Plurality Press, Portrait, and co-founder of the late Cringe-Worthy Poets Collective. Their work has been published in Thimble Literary Magazine, Cavity, Bangor Literary Journal, and Aisthesis: The Interdisciplinary Honors Journal. Their work has been anthologized in Boricua en la Luna: An Anthology of Puerto Rican Voices, A Flash of Dark, Mansion, and My Next Heart: New Buffalo Poetry. Aside from being a Poetry Editor for Coffin Bell Journal and Variety Pack, Julio is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in English Literature while working on their next project; converting a school bus into a poetry caravan.

Show Us Your Monologues

Show Us Your Monologue Winner – Erin Bellavia

CONGRATULATIONS to Erin Nappe Bellavia – the winner of ITOWNY’s Inaugural “Show Us Your Monologues Contest!”

You did an INCREDIBLE job! Way to go!

Thanks to all who entered the contest! We loved each and every submission and are so thankful that you shared your talents with us!! (PS this was a pretty fun contest – should we do another?!)

Commentary · Uncategorized

ITOWNY’s Statement on the Killing of George Floyd and on the Persistence of Racism in America

ITOWNY’s Statement on the Killing of George Floyd and on the Persistence of Racism in America

The members of Inclusive Theater of WNY (ITOWNY) are horrified by and abhor the murder of George Floyd by members of the Minneapolis Police Force on 25 May 2020. The lives of Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmad Aubrey, and a tragically long list of other black Americans lost to the hands of racial injustice and police brutality in recent years is cause for despair, especially because the stories are not new.

It is easy to look to the arts in moments of crisis such as the present, when we seek an understanding of the incomprehensible persistence of political, economic, and social discrimination against persons of color. It may seem harder to remember the outrage we feel in this moment when we return to our theaters and performing art spaces.

However, ITOWNY resolves to keep these troubling aspects at the forefront of our work going forward. There is, of course, much to celebrate in the artistic work that we do, but our passion should never blind us to injustices.

We must never let that indifference to human suffering become our own. We must never deaden our hearts to the pain of others. Our fundamental values demand that we care.

We must bridge the differences of our individual thoughts, to make space for the conversation! This is how we can move forward and sustain momentum, to bring about real change!

Inclusive Theater of WNY

Full (limited edit)

Show Us Your Monologues

Show Us Your Monologues – Avery Gill

And now it’s time to hear from Avery “The Definitive” Gill – Straight Out of Compton and his submission for the 2020 “Show Us Your Monologues” Contest.

You can view and vote (give it a like!) And be sure to follow our YouTube page!

Contest ends on 5/31/2020! Send your submissions to!

Saturday Series

Saturday Series: Inclusion in the Arts – Christina Abt

Join ITOWNY as we chat with Christina Abt! Saturday, May 30th – 8pm!

Clear your schedule, DVR your favorite TV shows and join Inclusive Theater of WNY each Saturday as we discuss topics related to Inclusion in the Arts!

Christina is an accomplished Western New York author, newspaper columnist, radio broadcaster and storyteller. She has written five books, “Chicken Wing Wisdom: Western New York Stories of Family, Life and Food Shared Around the Table,” a regional best-seller, “Crown Hill, A Novel of Love, Life and The Afterlife,” Christina’s first novel earning five-star Amazon reviews, “Heart and Soul, The Best Years of My Op-Ed Life,” chronicling Christina’s 15-year newspaper and NPR Affiliate/WBFO commentary career and Beauty & Grace earning five-star Amazon reviews and praise from readers across the country.

She has just finished her fifth book, Money or Love (working title,) which will publish in mid-2020.

All Saturday sessions are FREE. We will be using the Zoom for our discussions. Each session will run approximately one (1) hour and there will be time for Q&A.

Can’t attend this week? That is okay! Please help us spread the word by sharing the event!

Questions? Want to be a guest on the show? Email