Kate Bell | Theater Artist, Writer & Singer/Songwriter
My name is Kate Bell and I am a writer, theater-maker, singer/songwriter, and teaching artist. I am excited by the prospect of making something new with my students, whether that’s a piece of theater, creative writing, or a song. This is why I view my students as to also be my collaborators. This means that we will work to together to express ourselves and make exciting new art pieces to offer the world.
When I was a teenager, my first experiences singing in front of audiences was at my church. The services were held in both Spanish and English because we were a sanctuary church for people from Central America. Singing in front of people from a variety of different countries and cultural backgrounds taught me that music has the power to unite people despite their differences, and that songs can be important tools in the fight to make the world a better place.
I continued to explore this idea of art as a tool for social change during high school and college, and I tried out other art forms as well, including theater and creative writing. I strongly believe that making art (whether that’s a play, a song, a sculpture, or whatever) is for everyone, and that art-making helps us to stay healthy, know ourselves better, and change our world.
What students and teachers say about Kate:
Dear Ms. Kate, I learned so many things from you but one thing I liked the most about this is our immigration song. It really inspired me because my dad told me he crossed the border and it was really hard. He walked through deserts, past lakes, and even past a jungle. When he came, he worked in a factory for his family. When we were singing, I kind of started to cry because the part when we said, “Others walked so far in heat and rain,” it reminded me of my dad. And the bad news is I’m not going to be here for the performance. I’m going to see my grandmother and father in Mexico. But thank you for letting me write a song.
Dear Ms. Kate, You are a wonderful teacher. For once in a lifetime, in my experience with City Lore, I felt different and creative. I don’t think you understand how great a voice you have and how much you wow me. Thank you for teaching us and I will always cherish you in my heart.
Dear Ms. Kate, Thank you for teaching us how to write songs. At first, I struggled to write songs, but thanks to you now I know how. The first time I heard we were doing songwriting, I was jumping with joy. Your voice is amazing! The first time I heard it I was shocked. I had so much fun! Wait, not fun, but an exceptional time! I can’t believe how amazing you are when you put together songs. You blew me away! We couldn’t have done this without you. Thank you for all you have done with us.
Students perform the “Immigration Song” at the completion of their songwriting residency with Kate Bell. The residency focused on the theme of immigration and encouraged students to connect with their own families’ histories of immigration.