Global Mo`olelo

July 1, 2011

Back in 2009, Mo`olelo developed The Green Theater Choices Toolkit.

Since then, theaters, artists, and other organizations from around the world have requested the Toolkit and are using it as a reference guide for their own theater-making processes, using it as a measurement tool for grant applications, and finding new ways to green up their work.

Here’s a listing of some of the organizations that have contacted us about the Toolkit:

Band of Creatures, Australia
Bedlam Theatre, Minneapolis, MN
Book-It Repertory, Seattle, WA
Broadway Green Alliance, New York, NY
Center Theatre Group, Los Angeles, CA
Cleveland Public Theatre, Cleveland, OH
Creative Trust, Toronto, Canada
EcoLife, Belgium
Illinois Shakespeare Festival
McCarter Theatre, Princeton, NJ
Mudlark Theatre, Tasmania, Australia
Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Ashland, OR
Penumbra, Minneapolis, MN
PlayMakers Repertory Theatre, Chapel Hill, NC
The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey
Styrofoam Out of Schools, New York, NY
Vital Theatre Company, Brooklyn, NY

To receive a copy of Mo`olelo’s Green Theater Choices Toolkit, please email


AIGA (the professional association for graphic designers) has a Sustainability Committee in San Diego, and they are organizing a green day at SELF (THE REMIX) on March 12. Following the performance they will be holding a reception and we’ll chat about Mo`olelo’s Green Theater Choices Toolkit. You can read about the event here:

It’s open to non-AIGA members, so if you’re interested in chatting green, order your tickets through them for March 12.

more greening news

November 12, 2009

Scenic Designer David F. Weiner and Artistic Director Seema Sueko will be speaking — via skype — at the LDI Green Day Conference on Thursday, November 19 in Orlando, Florida. They’ll share the lastest versions of Mo`olelo’s Green Theater Choices Scorecards. You can read about the conference here:

You can download the latest Green Theater Choices Scorecards here:

chantal has arrived

August 12, 2009

As we wrote in Monday’s blog, playwright Chantal Bilodeau began her jouney to the Canadian arctic archipelago to conduct research for her script. She arrived safely and sent this photo:

Photo 1 Chantal's arrival

Mo`olelo received word that we’re being awarded grant from the Creative Connections Fund of The James Irvine Foundation! The monies will support the commissioning of a new play by Chantal Bilodeau that addresses the intersection of race, class and the environment. You can read about the grant here.

Theatre and the Environment Panel

(And an excerpt of a work in progress)


Martin E. Segal Theatre Center

The CUNY Graduate Center,

365 Fifth Avenue

New York, NY 10016-4309


April 23rd, 2009, 6:30 pm



Join us on the evening after Earth Day to explore what theatre artists and production staff are doing to meet the extraordinary challenges of climate change. At a time when local, state and federal governments are setting goals for reductions in carbon emissions, holding public meetings to solicit public recommendations for adapting to rising sea levels; when businesses are beginning to talk about renewable energy, closed-loop waste streams, and innovative mobility systems; what are we doing in the theatre?


This event will explore theatre and the environment from two perspectives: the process of making theatre, and the theatre we make.  On the process side, we will explore building performance and renewable energy, facilities management, closed loop set design and construction and intelligent recycling. On the content side we will see an excerpt of a new play by Shelia Callaghan. Directed by Daniella Topol, we will learn from her how this multimedia theatre piece about water has been shaped through her consultations with scientists at the Department of Environmental Conservation. We will also reflect on Bill McKibben’s lament that the theatre lags behind other art forms in grasping – and mining – the full artistic potential of this issue.


Panelists include Gideon Banner, actor and founder of the Green Theater Initiative; Bob Usdin, founder and CEO of Showman Fabricators; Benno Van Noort, LEED-certified director of facilities at the New Victory Theatre and The New 42nd Street Studios; NYC Director Daniella Topol; Marda Kirn, founder and Executive Director of Eco-Arts Connections in Boulder, Colorado. Seema Sueko, Artistic Director of Mo`olelo Performing Arts Company in San Diego, and Ben Todd, Executive Director and fuel cell technology expert at the Arcola Theatre in London will participate via a Skype feed (as a way to lower our carbon footprint).


This program is co-curated for CUNY by Michael Johnson-Chase, a former theatre professor, international program director at the Lark Play Development Center, producer and writer. After a stint as a solar installer, he is currently developing Green Collar Job training programs at Solar One; an environmentally focused arts and education center in NYC soon to feature New York City’s first net zero carbon classroom and performance facility.


ECOBAGS® are here!

August 6, 2008

Night Sky Associate Producer Shera with her Mo`olelo Eco-Bag

Night Sky Associate Producer Shera with her Mo`olelo ECOBAGS®


For the past couple years, we would sell Mo`olelo t-shirts at our productions. It was a great way for us to raise more funds to support our operations and spread the word about the Company. As our supply of t-shirts dwindled, we began to explore what we could sell instead that would be more in alignment with our greening initiative. The Board unanimously approved the idea of a canvas bag and assigned Board member Caroline McKoen to research vendors, printers and supplies to determine what would make a ‘green bag’ truly ‘green.’ She spent a month and a half diligently investigating this. She looked at the source of the bag (where did it come from?); what was it made of (organic cotton, grown under fair-trade conditions or recycled scrap fabric, sweatshop free?); how were the bags transported to the printer (by ship? by air? by truck?); how were the bags printed and what kind of ink was used (water-based?); how much do the bags cost?; and what kind of philosophy and customer service did the vendor offer?

In the end, we selected a 100% certified organic cotton bag from ECOBAGS® ( It is 19″ wide, 15.5″ tall, 5″ bottom gusset with 22″ handles. The cotton is grown under fair trade certification with growing and factory conditions inspected. The bags were shipped from India, then printed with water-based inks by ECOBAGS®. They were then shipped via UPS to Mo`olelo’s office.

They cost Mo`olelo $6.78 each, and we are selling them for $10 each. You can buy one at the show, Night Sky. If you can’t wait until then and would like to get your paws on one of these as soon as possible, call the office 619-342-7395 and schedule a time to swing by and shop.


You can read more about Mo`olelo and ECOBAGS® here:


August 2, 2008

GoLoco – Traveling green to Night Sky


You may have heard about our $5 discount for traveling green to Mo`olelo.  We now have a tool that makes it really easy to connect with other theater goers to share the ride to Mo`olelo.  GoLoco is a website that uses an ingenious system of web-based alerts to let you know when friends and other theatre patrons (new friends!) are going your way. The easiest way to use GoLoco is to sign up and post a trip.  You can go further though and form a network of friends and create groups that alert you when others are going your way.  There are many privacy settings on the site so that you can control who sees your trips.

To sign up for the Mo`olelo/ San Diego Theater Group visit: 

Post your trips to the group and get email alerts when others are carpooling to Mo`olelo.

green people

July 29, 2008

This week Mo`olelo is fortunate to have a visiting intern from the Center for Sustainable Practice in the Arts, Naseem. She is a senior at Kalamazoo College, combining her passions in biology and theater. She and our summer intern Emily are spending the week meeting with other San Diego professionals who are working on sustainability issues in their work (thank you Lisa, Deirdre and Joey!) and they will make a short ‘green presentation’ to the Night Sky company on the first day of rehearsal.

Here’s a photo from Naseem’s first day with us, a meeting of green minds: Emily, Shera, Naseem, Ian and Justine.

meet the intern

July 10, 2008

Intern Emily interviewing graphic designer Lisa

Intern Emily interviewing graphic designer Lisa

About a month ago, we received a wonderful voicemail message at Mo`olelo. Emily, a Standford student, had read about Mo`olelo’s greening initiative in the San Diego Union Tribune (Mo`olelo Goes Green and Gets Funny) and she said she couldn’t stop thinking about it.  A theater artist and environmentalist herself, Emily said she was interested in interning at Mo`olelo. So, we quickly put her to work. In addition to helping around the office, Emily is working on a ‘green theater project.’ She’s been interviewing Mo`olelo’s staff and designers to get a complete picture of what makes us and our upcoming production green, and she’s writing an article which will appear in the playbill for Night Sky. Further, she’s exploring how Mo`olelo can build upon our greening initiative. Emily will be interning at Mo`olelo through the summer. Stay tuned for great ideas coming from this young mind.