Danielle Abrams is a Professor of the Practice in Performance and a member of the Graduate Faculty at School of the Museum of Fine Arts. Abrams is also the 2018 recipient of the Distinguished Artist Award from the St. Botolph Foundation. Abrams’ performances emerge from the social forces that have shaped her multiracial identity as African-American, white and Jewish. She adopts disparate personae and utilizes humor, and a blending of the past and the present, to illuminate the charged and poignant crossroads between racial and cultural groups.
As a Tisch Faculty Fellow, Abrams is developing a performance and archive that sheds light on the once segregated “Lincoln Beach” (1954-1963) in New Orleans, LA. Amidst the media’s reminiscences summoned by New Orleans’ 300th anniversary, critical reflections about Lincoln Beach are obfuscated by recalling the larger and better-equipped “whites only” Pontchartrain Beach Amusement Park. Abrams is conducting interviews with former Lincoln Beach patrons, and building a research form that can be donated to the African-American elders of New Orleans. Abrams’ project gathers stories from African-Americans about segregation, frustration and heartache but also provides the legacy of joy, kinship, resistance and survival.