Sean  Dunnington 's profile photo

Sean Dunnington

Narrative Arts Design Specialist, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

Sean  Dunnington 's profile photo
Location: Honolulu, HI
Start Year: 2023
TRHT Pillar: Narrative Change


Sean Dunnington is a queer playwright and civic artist living between New York and Honolulu. He’s currently a resident storyteller and narrative arts design specialist with the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa’s Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation (TRHT) Center, and an Emerging Artist Fellow with the California Arts Council. Sean recently concluded a year-long arts residency with the East-West Center, writing residency with Ka Waiwai Collective and playwriting fellowship with Creative Labs Hawai’i. Select plays include The Children’s Farm, Flat Fish, Zap, Small Minds, Hawaiian Shake, House Plays, and The Undocumented, or a Far Too Brief History of Ravensbrück. Sean’s work has been produced and/or developed by Magic Theatre, Custom Made Theatre, Lounge Theatre, Circle Squared Collective, LabTheatre, Manhattan Repertory Theatre, Kumu Kahua Theatre and more. Sean recently launched Tree Moss, the first-ever playwriting collective for playwrights in Hawai’i. Sean graduated with a B.A. in Applied Playwriting from the University of Redlands’ Johnston Center for Integrative Studies, and he’s currently pursuing his MFA in Dramatic Writing from NYU Tisch School of the Arts.

Sean strongly believes in democratizing storytelling practices across Hawai’i, which is why he has led writing workshops and story circles with organizations such as The United States Department of State, Hawai’i State Art Museum, Hawai’i Council for the Humanities, Hawai’i LGBT Legacy Foundation, Hālawa Correctional Facility, DreamHouse ‘Ewa Beach, Mānoa Heritage Center, Hawai’i Sea Grant, Matsunaga Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution, Hawai’i Green Growth, Ala Wai Watershed Collaboration and Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative. He co-designed TRHT Narrative Design workshops with Dr. Kaiwipunikauikawēkiu Punihei Lipe. 

Future Focus

Sean’s TRHT Narrative Design workshops center playwriting as a creative process that offers participants innovative tools to reimagine and practice how to voice their complex narratives truthfully and authentically. His hybrid artistic approach empowers participants to write and share stories concerning self, each other and ’āina. By integrating TRHT frameworks and dramatic forms, Sean challenges participants to own their truthful and authentic identities and learn how to encourage their communities to do the same. He leads this series at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa for facilitators of Pilina Circles and racial healing circles. He also facilitates hybrid and condensed versions for schools, community centers, nonprofits and art spaces across Oʻahu and Hawaiʻi islands.

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Culture of Health Leaders Institute for Racial Healing

A Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Program