-Founding Director and President, Studio 878 Trust, a non-profit organization whose mission includes providing funding for young dance and theater students
-Co-founder, Chance to Dance Scholarship for young ballroom dancers
-Co-director, Tides Dance Collective
-President, Chatham Candy Manor
-Founding President, Chatham Orpheum Theater
Naomi has been affiliated with many theater and dance organizations including Cape Rep, Chatham Drama Guild, Monomoy Theatre, Delray Beach Playhouse, and Turtle Lane Playhouse. A long-time supporter of the Cape Cod Theatre Company, Naomi began her association with the theatre working with Nina Schuessler on the development of Wrinkles. Her teaching credits include Wellesley College, the Jeannette Neill Dance Studio, Boston, the Academy of Performing Arts as well as San Carlos School of Dance, Brazil.
Naomi recently received two proclamations from the Massachusetts House of Representatives, the first for “Woman of the Year” 2014 award from the Lower Cape Business and Professional Women’s organization, the second as recipient of “Leadership in the Arts Award” from the Arts foundation of Cape Cod for her work in creating the Chatham Orpheum Theater. She also received Congressional Recognition by the US House of Representatives and was honored as Grand Marshall of the Chatham Independence Day Parade in 2015.
With a strong commitment to social justice, Naomi has collaborated on many arts projects addressing social issues and has been recognized in that regard by the Mass Cultural Council in 2010 and by the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. Her work, which addresses such issues as racism, oppression, human trafficking, physical challenge, and the environment, has been performed in schools, churches, and theaters throughout the Cape.
Naomi has been teaching for nearly 50 years, is a pioneer in combining social justice work with the arts, and has recently, at age 69, become an avid ballroom dance competitor. She lives in Chatham with her husband, David Veach, and their two French bulldogs, Isaac Bad-Boy and Inspector Clouseau.
Wilderness Sarchild is an expressive arts therapist, poet, playwright, and grandmother of six. Her poems have been published in many anthologies/literary journals and she has won awards for her poetry and play writing from Veterans for Peace, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, and the Joe Gouveia WOMR National Poetry Competition. Her first book of poetry, Old Women Talking, will be published by Passager Books in late autumn, 2017.
For the past 30 years, Wilderness has been creating ensemble performances concerning women’s issues, as well as other peace and justice issues. Many of her pieces are created collaboratively using a combination of movement, spoken word, and music: “American Quilt I” (the underbelly of living in the USA); “American Quilt II” (racism); “No Time Not to Love: Reflections on 9/11” (peace and recovery); “Mother’s Day,” (the real meaning of that holiday); and “Women Reclaiming, Men Opening” (gender issues). All of those public performances involved folks who often had no performance background.
Wilderness wrote and starred in a one-act play entitled “Slave Day,” connecting issues of sexism, anti-semitism, racism, and modern day slavery. She also performed in “Out of the Darkness,” an ensemble piece about breast cancer.
Wilderness has long been a source for and supporter of the creative arts on the Cape. For many years she offered a free and open weekly movement forum called Pure Pleasure of Movement; co-led, with Naomi Turner, Lifedance Theater workshops for individuals to share their life stories through the expressive arts; and leads experiential, expressive arts therapy groups to create empowered, compassionate, and politically aware citizens.
Wilderness’ mosaics of powerful women have been shown in two art shows and were auctioned off at conferences to benefit survivors of modern day slavery.
In 2002 Wilderness co-founded the Cape Cod Dare, a monthly community gathering for healing.
Her poem, “Hags and Crones” was the inspiration for Wrinkles, the Musical.
Wilderness is 69 years old (in 2017), and lives in Brewster, MA, with her husband Chuck Madansky.