Pioneers Go East Collective Educational program includes an on going relationship with The Children Institute - a charter school in New Jersey dedicated to teenagers and young adults on the autism spectrum - where PGEC artists teach theatre crafts in workshops that encourage imaginative play using oral storytelling, physical acting and puppetry. A work PGEC artists have developed with TCI students has been presented as an educational video at La MaMa/ gallery.

Currently teaching artist Gian Marco Lo Forte is developing PGEC creative and educational practice with students at Public School 78 in Queens. The educational workshop focuses on discovering the students heritage using oral storytelling, puppetry and new technology.

Upcoming: Pioneers Go East  Collective selected for New Victory LabWorks - Professional Development Artists 2015/2016.



Gian Marco Lo Forte is a teaching artist focused on story telling using movement, visuals and personal stories. Gian Marco has extensive teaching experience: Guest teaching Artist at Trinity College/ La MaMa (2015); Lecturer in theatre at Pace University (2010-2013); The Children Institute teaching artist; Teaching artist/ performer in Italy with various after school programs and children performances in Rome (2000-2001). MFA Tisch/ New York University.

Abby Felder is an artist and educator and collaborator with Pioneers Go East Collective since 2010. In addition to her work in NYC as a dramaturge, writer and puppeteer, she has also worked for nearly two decades as a teaching artist for young people and as a creator of work for young audiences.  Highlights include developing and teaching a year-long puppetry class at Valhalla Children's Hospital for Elementary School students; a week-long puppetry intensive she created at Matthew's Playhouse for the Performing Arts, and SLUG AND SNAIL, a children’s solo-show she wrote, built and performs in Kindergartens and festivals nationally. BA Sarah Lawrence College.

Nehprii Amenii (puppeteer and performer) is an artist, writer, and educator. As a theatre artist, she has a passion for both puppetry theatre and grand-scale performance spectacle. She creates and directs work that aims to enchant the imagination and inspire new ways of seeing and thinking.  She has created and worked with Penumbra Theatre Company, In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre, Bread and Puppet Theatre, and Cirque Du Soleil.  After enjoying 8 years of teaching and creating puppet performances for The Alvin Ailey American Dance Foundation, She is now the creative consultant for the Ailey the arts in education department. In 2010 she received a grant from Downtown Brooklyn Partnership to create an exhibit and Community Arts Center based on her children's book "Memories of the Little Elephant. Currently, she is founder and Artistic Director of Khunum Productions while also teaching storytelling through multi-media arts within New York public schools. She holds a BA in English, Studio Arts, and Journalism from the University of Minnesota and an MFA in Theatre Production from Sarah Lawrence College.

Julia Dobner-Pereira is a performer, singer and arts educator, and a Masters in Drama Therapy candidate at New York University. She received her BA from Smith College, where she trained in classical voice. Julia teaches children acting, creative drama, dance, and musical theatre at the Children's Acting Academy. She has also tutored children of all ages and works with children with disabilities with great care, patience, and skill. Julia performs regularly in New York with Yara Arts Group and Pioneers Go East Collective.