Hannah Friedman is a creator with a rich variety of skills. She is a writer, event producer, and massage therapist. All her work is connected by one bright thread: the use of creativity as a tool for building community.
After completing her B.A. at Sarah Lawrence College, Hannah moved to Chicago and began work as a theatrical director. Her credits include directing and producing work at the Piven Theatre Workshop, where she Assistant Directed for Joyce Piven. She was also the Outreach Coordinator for Oracle Productions, a public access theatre. In this role she edited, produced, and directed classic radio plays which toured to nursing homes and hospitals throughout the Chicagoland area.
During this time she also co-founded the ribcage, an activist collective which ran from 2012-2014. Here she hosted regular events for nonprofits in Chicago, including Black and Pink, Project Nia, and Occupy Chicago. The space also hosted Theatre of the Oppressed workshops, and fundraisers for community members’ upcoming gender affirmation surgeries.
Hannah went on to organize community events in both Chicago and Michigan. She produced FED Supper Club, where she was responsible for managing a rotating staff of up to 50 people per event. This included DJs, performers, roaming artists such as jugglers and body painters, the set-up and tear-down crews, and the ticketing team. From 2016-2019 she produced Forged in Flames, an annual artists’ gathering held at Heart Valley Springs, a campground and working permaculture farm in Bloomingdale, Michigan.
From 2016-2020, Hannah served as the co-founder, CEO, and Editor in Chief of CopyCat Creative Content, a boutique copywriting agency. In this position, she wore numerous hats: business manager, client liaison, account manager, researcher, blog writer, social media manager, punstress, and more. Her team was responsible for writing and editing the updated website for Sysco Foods during their 2017 redesign. They were also the creative force behind CAKE, a subsidiary of Sysco. CopyCat took CAKE’s social media accounts to the next level, optimized their website for SEO, and took on the branding of their ongoing blog.
In 2020, Hannah decided to pursue writing projects outside the advertising space. She began writing a Medium blog, commenting on the intersection between social justice and mental health. This work has been picked up by several Medium publications, including An Injustice! and The Startup. The most popular article in this collection has 1.5k views.
In her continued focus on health and wellness, Hannah also wote guided meditations in collaboration with Naturespace, an app in which users listen to holistic soundscapes, experiencing the open space of the outdoors through the use of headphones. This work is currently being recorded, and will soon be available to the public.
As a massage therapist, Hannah works mainly with people who have experienced trauma. She is a proud member of The Breathe Network, and she offers sliding scale rates to assault survivors and LGBTQIA+ clients. She is committed to creating a safe(r) space in which survivors can reimagine their relationships with their own bodies. As she says to each of her clients: she is an expert in anatomy, but you are an expert in you.
Hannah was born in California, and she lived in New York for a time before settling in the Midwest. She loves science fiction, poetry, camping, and spending time with her community of queer artists. Her favorite authors include China Mieville, Shelley Jackson, and adrienne maree brown.
Headshot courtesy of joe mazza — brave lux inc.