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In Our Own Words: Julie Skrzypek, the co-artistic director of Theatre Buford

Editor’s note: Atlanta’s artists face uncertainty in the age of coronavirus. To help us all connect, we’re offering this series. In each “In Our Own Words,” an artist will share their experience, strength and hope as we all navigate a new normal.


Covid-19 has put a great pause on a lot of things and has affected my life in a very positive way. At the beginning I was embarrassed because I’m not on the front lines of helping people. But I’ve slowed down. I’ve turned very much inward. I read everything I can, I look at visual art, so when we do come back I can use my voice in the right way, as a leader who can take care of people.

I’ve been reading a lot of poetry. I wake every morning and have a FaceTime breakfast with [Atlanta actor] Shelli Delgado, who’s in Waco, Texas. I’m cooking for a 96-year-old woman in our building. I made a pact with myself: I’m going to limit unnecessary things. I’ve been talking to my dad a little more. I’ve been trying to listen a lot more.

My hope is that we take this time to be still and reconnect, to love others, to be present, to understand what motivates us and what we treasure in order to make us a stronger community. We’re in the midst of the biggest form of nontraditional collaboration ever and globally. My hope is that by the end, I have information that is useful, that my impact is bigger than myself.


 In times like these, when we are separated by necessity, ArtsATL is needed more than ever. Please consider a donation so we can continue to highlight Atlanta’s creative community during this unprecedented time.