TED Talks Live
Adam Driver: Why I bring theater to the military
November 3, 2015
Before he fought in the galactic battles of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Adam Driver was a United States Marine with 1/1 Weapons Company. He tells the story of how and why he became a Marine, the complex transition from soldier to civilian -- and Arts in the Armed Forces, his nonprofit that brings theater to the military. Because, as he says: "Self-expression is just as valuable a tool as a rifle on your shoulder." Followed by a spirited performance of Marco Ramirez's "I am not Batman" by Jesse J. Perez and Matt Johnson. (Adult language)Matt Johnson
Matt Johnson has played on some of the most critically acclaimed records in almost everyone's collections. Full bio
Double-click the English subtitles below to play the video.
- Actor and Marine Corps veteran
Adam Driver is working to bridge the cultural gap between the United States Armed Forces and the performing arts communities by bringing the best modern American theater to the military. Why you should listen
Jesse J. Perez
Before he was an actor, Adam Driver was a Marine with the 1/1 Weapons Company at Camp Pendleton, California. After the Marines, he attended Juilliard and went on to star in films like Star Wars: Episode VII, While We're Young, Midnight Special and on HBO's "Girls." His performance in "Girls" has garnered him three Emmy nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, and he won the Volpi Cup Award for Best Actor for Hungry Hearts, which premiered at the 2014 Venice International Film Festival.
Driver co-founded Arts in the Armed Forces (AITAF), a nonprofit that that honors, educates, inspires and entertains active duty and veteran members of the United States Armed Forces and their families by engaging them in the power and social service of the performing arts. The organization enlists artists of the highest quality and chooses thought-provoking content with an eye to what might speak to this particular audience.
Jesse J. Perez works as a guest director and teacher at Juilliard, and he has done numerous readings for Arts in the Armed Forces.Why you should listen
Jesse J. Perez has starred in numerous off-Broadway performances including "Informed Consent," "Up Against the Wind and Triple Happiness." He has also worked at The Chekhov Project: Lake Lucille as a choreographer and done numerous readings for Arts in the Armed Forces.
Matt Johnson has played on some of the most critically acclaimed records in almost everyone's collections.Why you should listen
From recording the seminal cult-creating album Grace with Jeff Buckley, to touring with the beloved St. Vincent, Matt Johnson has worked with a wide spectrum of artists over the past two decades including Rufus Wainwright, Martha Wainwright, Australia’s brother-sister duo Angus and Julia Stone, Elysian Fields, Beth Orton and Duncan Sheik.
The original video is available on TED.com