Friday, June 29, 2007

AAPEX Truly Blessed

AAPEX, which was started on January 1st of this year, today exists as a network of around 120 artists across the US. This number is up from 90 a few weeks ago as a result of my trips to Washington DC and Cincinnati, where I met and added to the list serv not so much playwrights as directors, actors and dramaturgs who have an interest in what we are doing. AAPEX is all about people and here are some of the people in whom we are truly blessed.

  • GREG STALLWORTH Greg is going to serve as the first vice president of AAPEX and is working with me to develop a reading & script development series in Cincinnati. Greg produced and directed the first AAPEX reading in Cincinnati on June 23. While attendance was small, the reading was very productive and received some attention from the Cincinnati press. For those of you who are not familiar with Cincy, it is a beautiful town with some beautiful theaters - but not a lot of black theater, so AAPEX has the opportunity to make a serious contribution on this front. Among other things, check out The Arts Consortium of Cincinnati at Consortium creative director Piper Davis was a member of the cast in our first reading and is an actress to look out for! Also making a significant contribution to the event was actor David Livers, who covered several of the male roles in the script brilliantly. The reading was followed by a production of Stallworth's seriously funny play EVE IN PARIDISE which was directed by the wonderful Terri Robinson who also pulled double duty in the title role of Eve. EVE IN PARADISE explores the dangers of internet dating.
  • PETER LAWSON JONES Peter is the author of THE FAMILY LINE which was the subjet of the Cincinnati reading. A truly fascinating fellow, Peter is on the board of Karamu Playhouse and is also the County Commisioner of Cuyahoga County, Ohio. The mayor of Cincinnati recognized Peter and AAPEX with a proclamation making June 23, 2007 Peter Lawson Jones day. ALAN WOODS Alan is the head of the Theater Archives at Ohio State and is responsible for setting up the AAPEX archives there. He attended the reading in Cincinnati and his presence was one factor in the event's success. So far about 10 AAPEX writers have contacted Alan and made arrangements to include their scripts in the archives. If you would like more information on the archives please let me know.
  • BOB OST Bob is the founder and president of Theater Resources Unlimited in New York City and thanks to Bob and TRU, AAPEX now has a nonprofit umbrella is NYC.
  • OWA A NYC playwright, Owa is the muse for OWAFEST - A CELEBRATION OF AFRICAN AMERICAN ABSURDISM which is now in development in NYC.
  • ROWEENA MACKAY A recent graduate of Yale, Roweena is serving as the dramaturg for OWAFEST. Acording to the writers involved, she is marvelous.
  • SHEILA SPELLER Artistic Driector of Orielle Creative comapny in NYC, Shiela is also helping with the development of OWASFEST. She is on her way today for a meeting with the Apollo Theater in Harlem to see if we can interest them in this and future AAPEX projects.
  • AURIN SQUIRE A NYC member of AAPEX, Aurin is also a journalist and is working on a piece about the trials and tribulations of the African American playwright which deals with many of the issues that have come up in my communications with everyone.
  • And last but certainly not least KAREN EVANS and THE BLACK WOMEN PLYAWRIGHTS GROUP This is an organization which merits everyone's attention and support. Founded by Karen Evans 18 years ago, BWPG has just made it through their 18th annual event which took place at Washington, DC's beautiful Studio Theater. The evening was hosted by the incredible Sheryll Lee Ralph and played to packed houses both nights. The evenings were astounding and especailly powerful because there were no sets or costumes - so the audience left takling about the plays! Imagine that. AAPEX members Louise Gray and Stanice Anderson had pieces in the event. Gray's piece HOW JLO GOT HER BUTT had the audiene in stiches and Anderson' piece WALKING ON WATER WHEN THE GROUND AIN'T ENOUGH moved us to tears. Other members of BWPG who are also members of AAPEX are Lois Wiley and Joy Jones - and while, living in DC, these ladies may take this for granted, both the AAPEX members and most of the other women in attendance hold or have held significant potitions in the Federal Govenment, the DC metropolitan goverment, the DC board of education and the various DC area universities. Evans and her organization are a force to be seriously reckoned with and positioned to effect important changes in the way African American playwrights are viewed both in this country and internationally as we move into the future.
  • AUDIENCE DEVELOPMENT SUGGETION I continue to be distressed at the absence of caucasians in the audiences of black theater. They don't know what they are missing & they really need to hear what these playwrights are saying. The difference between sitting in a largely white audience versus a largely black audience is the difference between going to Sunday School and going to a revival. So the next time you head out to see a play by an African American playwright, grab one of your friends who isn't African American and take them with you. Perhaps that will help change the attititude of major regional artistic directors and boards that plays by Africn American writers are a "Febrauary" thing. Speaking of which, a great time to come to Nashville will be this month for Barry Scott;s production of Jean Genet's THE BLACKS. Theater - it isn't just a New York thing anymore.

Jaz Dorsey

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Is you is or Is you Ain't - a Play Reading

Staged Readings -New Federal Theater - NYC

In honor of Juneteenth and Father’s Day, LITERARY BREED takes an overview of past/current/future America through the eyes – and language – of African-American male playwrights including, Joel Willis, Michael A. Jones, Michael P. Moss, Cheo Jeffery, Allen Solder, Kermit Frazier, Ajene D. Washington, and Jamal Williams.

SATURDAY, 7:30 PM, JUNE 30th
AAPEX MEMBER: Jamal Williams' play:

Featuring Pamela Monroe, Nadhege Ptah,
Iris Williams, Taqiyya Holden, Erwin E.A. Thomas,Michael Jones
D.K. Bowser, Michele Baldwin, and Victor Dickerson

To be read

Abrons Arts Center, Recital Hall
466 Grand Street, New York, NY 10002

The play:
After World War II, victorious soldiers and sailors came home while newly liberated women had to give up their jobs and return to being mere housewives. Many black women escaped the South in the War years to work in the West Coast shipyards where they gained "liberation" and new freedom. They drove cabs, buses, trucks, and bulldozers. Black "Rosie-the-Riveters" made money and acquired a powerful sense of self. Many of them vowed never to return to the South.

Olivia Pondexter, straight out of Crosscreek, Alabama breaks the mold and returns to "rescue" two sisters. She has to fulfill a promise she'd made four years before. Because of something shameful she had been forced to do to survive, she had lost contact with them for all those years. Not only does she bring with her a hatbox full of money, she finds herself haunted by the physical spirit of what she has shamefully tried to forget. What makes matters worse, is that in order to regain the crown of Matriarch she has to make them leave their men behind.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Lorraine Hansberry Theater's Home in San Francisco Threatened By Eviction

The Lorraine Hansberry Theater, San Fransico's oldest African American theater company, may lose its 19-year-old home. The Academy of Art University is purchasing the building where the theater is housed and will not be renewing its lease. Hansberry Executive Director Quentin Easter said its lease expires July 31. Mayor Gavin Newsom has been approached by the San Francisco Opera, the Symphony, the Ballet, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Academy Conservatory Theater to save the Hansberry because it's "a hallmark cultural institution for this city" and urge him to "do everything you can to help this organization preserve its home."

"Obviously, the Lorraine Hansberry is extremely significant, not just in San Francisco but across the country," said Kary Schulman, director of the city's Grants for the Arts program. "It's the West Coast's longest established African American theater. It has a fine reputation. Many terrific actors and directors and technicians have gone through there. It's been an important training ground. It's still managed by its founding artistic and executive directors, and continuity is such an important factor in arts organizations."

"The motto of the Academy of Art University is, 'Built by artists for artists,' " ACT Executive Director Heather Kitchen said. "It seems to me that, as artists, they would understand that to lose one's home of many years without much notice would be very harmful. Perhaps they could put profit on the back seat for a little bit and allow the theater a year to complete its season and find a new home. If they're abruptly displaced, it's going to really affect their ability to serve their artists and their audiences."

The last remaining black theater company in California with its own stage, the Hansberry has achieved a national profile beyond that of most companies its size. Founded in a storefront by Artistic Director Stanley E. Williams and Easter, the company endured a nomadic existence before finding a home in the YWCA building, a 1917 historic landmark designed by Louis Hobart, who also designed the nearby Bohemian Club and Marines Memorial buildings. The company renovated the Y's former gymnasium in 1988 and built its theater for about $500,000 in what is regarded as a historic partnership of city, private, corporate and foundation funding. During its two decades there, the Hansberry has struggled against downturns in the economy and the general decline of ethnic-specific theaters as larger regional companies broadened the diversity of their programming. Williams and Easter bucked the trend by attracting major African American artists and collaborating with other companies, ranging from Cultural Odyssey and the San Francisco Mime Troupe to ACT and Berkeley Repertory Theatre. Nationally known artists such as the late playwright August Wilson, Ntozake Shange, Danny Glover, Alice Walker, Ruby Dee, Ossie Davis and recent Tony winner Anika Noni Rose have worked there. Easter said the theater's recently completed 26th season was one of its most successful, attracting a total audience of about 20,000 people. "We had a 40 percent uptick in sales," he said. "People are enthusiastic about coming here. We were looking forward to a banner year, building on that momentum. It's all at risk at this point. "The next five-show season was set to open in October with an adaptation of Toni Morrison's "The Bluest Eye," followed by Langston Hughes' "Black Nativity," the theater's popular holiday offering. It also regularly rents out its space, making it one of the few available midsize theaters in the downtown theater district. David Drake's East Coast production of "2 Boys in a Bed on a Cold Winter's Night," running from July 5 through 29, could be the last show at the theater if the company has to leave. Easter said he still hopes the theater and the Academy will come to an accommodation that will allow the company to stay, at least long enough to look for a new home downtown. Even the state of the ownership of the building is hard to figure out, he said, "between new owners and leasers and options to purchase. A very complicated set of real estate maneuvers is going forth. We hope that if they (the Academy) hear from enough people, they'll decide not to move us out or to work with us on a transition. Hope springs eternal."

Meanwhile, Board of Supervisors President Aaron Peskin, who represents the Hansberry's district, introduced a resolution at Tuesday's board meeting to try to save the theater in its current location. Stating that the board "considers African American arts and culture as embodied by the Hansberry to be important to the character and values of our city," the resolution calls on the Academy "to work cooperatively" with the company "to find a solution that would allow the theater to remain at its historic location."

Peskin aide Rose Chung said she expects the resolution to pass at next Tuesday's meeting.

This article was sent to you by someone who found it on SFGate. The original article can be found on here: Copyright 2007 SF Chronicle

Contact Mayor Newsom and let him know you want him to "Save the Hansberry!" by e-mailing him at

Sunday, June 24, 2007


  • AAPEX sponsored a reading yesterday in Cincinnati (actually Fairfield ) of THE FAMILY LINE by Peter Lawson Jones (see post below). Directed by Greg Stallworth and presented by AAPEX and Emerald Entertainment.
  • KING WILLIE by Jamal Williams read yesterday in DC. Presented by Robert S. Morgan and The Essential Theater.
  • The Black Women Playwrights Group annual event in DC on June 18 and 19 was an astounding event and DC itself is full of actors, directors, playwrights etc. You meet them everywhere. Each playwright worked closely with a dramaturg.
  • Speaking of dramaturgs, AAPEX is working with a wonderful dramaturg in New York in conjunction with OWAFEST. Her name is Roweena Mackay and she hails from Great Britain but is a recent graduate of Yale University. Ben Marshall, Sean O'Leary, Evan Guilford Blake and Grace Cavalieri continue to win prizes. Congratulations.
  • Dr. Shirlene Holmes of Georgia State will enjoy a production of her play A LADY AND A WOMAN in South Africa and Alan Woods, who is organizing the AAPEX archives at Ohio State also has a piece in this festival.
  • AAPEX has a nonprofit umbrella in New York City thanks to Bob Ost and his organization Theater Resources Unlimited (TRU linked in Resources). Donations welcome.
  • Ohio playwright Mike Oatman has completed the first draft of his play THE CHITTLIN' THIEF. To react in the vernacular, this play kicks b---- well, let's just say it kicks.
  • Finally, thanks to Dave Copeland of Miami, we have a superior internet site. If you would like to post something let me know. We could particulary use some funding for the administration and development of this aspect.

Jaz Dorsey

Saturday, June 23, 2007

AAPEX Ohio Reading!!

AAPEX reading great success in suburban Cincinnati!
The cast of The Family Line by Peter Lawson Jones, read at the Fairmont Community Arts Center by Emerald Productions, with director Greg Stallworth at the left, playwright Jones at the right.

AAPEX founder Jaz Dorsey, director Stallworth, and playwright Jones respond to questions from the enthusiastic audience

Cast members and director Stallworth listen to the discussion

and the playwright takes the cake! Literally!
Playwright and Cuyahoga Country Commissioner Jones was also presented with a proclamation!

Friday, June 22, 2007

AAPEX Gets Copy in Cinnci! First Reading This Saturday

Thanks to a story this week in Cincinnati's Inquirer, AAPEX got recognized for the first time as being a "new national" organization seeking to bring African-American playwrights and playwrights of the African-American experience together and getting their work read and produced.

Writer Jackie Demaline's story focused on Greg Stallworth, one of AAPEX's original members. He wants Greater Cincinnati to see more work by African-American theater artists and, through his company Emerald Entertainment, is making it happen by bringing eight readings of original plays by AAPEX members to the area in the coming year.

"I believe this will be an avenue to get more Greater Cincinnati African-Americans involved in the arts," says Stallworth.

The first AAPEX reading will be this Saturday at 3p.m. of the play "The Family Line," by Cleveland playwright (and Cuyahoga County Commissioner) Peter Lawson Jones. The play deals with a happily married couple's struggle when they learn she can't have children, says Stallworth. Admission is just $5.

At 7:30 p.m., Stallworth's one-act comedy "Eve in Paradise" will be a fundraiser for Helping Young Mothers Mentor, a mentoring and advocacy group for pregnant teens. In "Eve," a retired postal worker looks for love in the classifieds and gets hooked by a con artist. Admission is $20. Call 513-867-5348 or visit online at The arts center is located at 411 Wessel Drive, Fairfield.

To read the entire article click here.

Better Than Reviews: Heartfelt Praise From A Director

Recently, Shirlene Holmes received an email out of the clear blue from a young student director in South Africa. Ms. Holmes didn't even know her play was being produced in South Africa but the most rewarding and spirit lifting part of the surprise came in the words found in the note:

My name is Alude Mahali. I am a 21 year old girl doing my Honours in Drama at Rhodes University in South Africa. In a weeks time I will be putting on a production of Shirlene Holmes' A Lady and a Woman at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown South Africa. I wanted to say that it has been my privilege to put on such an honest and heartfelt piece. I would like to say that Dr. Holmes is my own personal 'sheroe' and I can only hope that I succeed in capturing the beauty, poetry and believability of the piece just as Dr. Holmes wrote it.

Thank you so much for your brilliant mind, mama,

Alude Mahali
South Africa

Praise for your work can't get much better than that.

Monday, June 18, 2007

InnerAct Productions Accepting Script Queries (Ongoing)

InnerAct Productions: Quality Theatre of Color! is currently accepting script queries (synopsis/outlines) in consideration for its 2007-2008 performance season. All submissions should be in synopsis form along with any history of the play, if any (previously produced, reviews, awards). Also, a brief bio of the playwright. A sample/portion of the script may also be included. A full script may be requested upon reviewing the synopsis. Drama, comedy, experimental, etc. Extended one-acts or full lengths. We are also in search of an original African American musical. We welcome works from all perspectives, with one stipulation -- quality. Equity showcase production. Commission.

InnerAct Productions is a not-for-profit, 501(c)3, theatre production company committed to produce for the African American community quality performances created by and for artists of color, and, nurture the professional craft of arts practitioners. Produced works depict accurate representations, cultural ideals and experiences of historical and contemporary African American life. Queries should be mailed to Dr. John Shévin Foster, Artistic Director at InnerAct Productions, 138 S. Oxford St. Suite 2C, Brooklyn, NY 11217. Please include your email address.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Congo Square Theatre Company's August Wilson New Play Initiative (Ongoing)

Material: Full-length plays, Translations, Adaptations, Musicals and Performance Art (submitted through literary agent or accompanied by a letter of recommendation).

The late August Wilson has been supportive of Congo Square Theatre Company since our inception as a donor, audience member and Founding Advisory Board member. Through open readings, development workshops, commissions and full productions, we will work to help develop the next generation of great American writers.

Congo Square Theatre Company is an ensemble dedicated to producing definitive and transformative theatre spawned from the African Diaspora, as well as from other world cultures. Congo Square Theatre Company seeks to establish itself as an institution of multicultural theatre. We will consider productions of previously produced plays. We do not accept unsolicited scripts for consideration for our seasons. You may submit your play through a literary agent or accompanied by a letter of recommendation by a theater professional (i.e. an artistic director or literary manager at a professional theater). If neither of these apply to you, you may write a letter of inquiry to Aaron Todd Douglas, Associate Artistic Director, and submit a brief synopsis, cast list, relevant production history and 10-15 pages of sample dialogue. The company may then request a complete script. No email or fax submissions accepted. Please include a SASE if you would like your materials returned. We accept submissions year-round.

Send to:
Congo Square Theatre Company’s August Wilson New Play Initiative
Attn. Aaron Todd Douglass, Assoc. Artistic Director
2936 N. Southport Ave, Suite 210
Chicago, IL 60657

The Playwrights' Center "Many Voices Playwriting Residency Awards" Deadline 7/27 (MN)

Date: 7-27-02 (postmarked by)
Material: Application and Writing Sample for writers of color
residing in Minnesota.

The Playwrights’ Center welcomes writers of color residing in Minnesota to apply for a Many Voices playwriting residency. Made possible by a grant from the Jerome Foundation, Many Voices provides cash grants, education, and opportunities to develop new work with theater professionals. The program is designed to increase cultural diversity in the contemporary theater, both locally and nationally.

The Playwrights’ Center will award eight nine month residencies to artists of color who are interested in developing their playwriting skills and creating theater in a supportive artists’ community. The program offers each artist a $1250 stipend; a biweekly roundtable; additional developmental funds to work with a mentor or do script development; a public showcase opportunity; and a one-year Playwrights’ Center Membership. Selection Process A diverse panel of theater artists will evaluate each application. Selection will be based on the applicant’s commitment, proven talent and artistic potential, and is guided by The Playwrights’ Center’s mission statement.

Eligibility to apply:
* Residencies are available to artists of color who have been a citizen or permanent resident of the United States and a legal resident of Minnesota since August 1, 2006.
* Recipients must maintain residency in Minnesota or within 100 miles of the Twin Cities during the grant year.
* Current or past Playwrights’ Center Core Members, McKnight or Jerome Fellows, or McKnight Advancement Grant recipients are not eligible to apply for a residency.
* Artists may not receive this award more than twice.

Residents are required to:
* Attend biweekly roundtables to share and discuss work with fellow residents.
* Complete play development activities such as reading, mentorship, or research.
* Volunteer, attend, or participate in at least two additional Playwrights’ Center events during the grant year.

Applicants must submit four collated, securely bound packets. All materials must be typed. Each packet must include:
* A completed application form.
* A one-page (maximum) personal history or resume including name, address, email, and phone number.
* A writing sample of any length (play scripts, film scripts, poetry, fiction, and nonfiction are acceptable). In addition to the writing sample, applicants may also include cued video or audio tapes of their work– one per packet.
* A one-page (maximum) description of goals for the residency period. If you would like receipt of your application materials acknowledged, send by a trackable postal or courier service (UPS, FedEx, USPS w/return receipt, etc) or enclose a self-addressed stamped postcard (SASP). Application materials will not be returned.

Many Voices Residency
The Playwrights’ Center
2301 Franklin Ave. East
Minneapolis, MN 55406-1099
— Grant recipients will be announced by: September 15, 2007.
— The grant year begins October 1, 2007 and ends June 30, 2008


Date: 7-01-07 (Postmarked by)
Material: Full-Length Plays by African American Playwrights
1) All entrants must be of African-American descent and permanent
residents within the United States.
2) Only full-length plays addressing the African-American will be considered.
One Acts and musicals are not accepted (with the exception of a play-with-music).
3) Adaptations and translations are not eligible unless from works in the public domain.
4) All rights for music or biographies must be secured by entrant prior to submission.
5) One completed script per playwright will be accepted.
6) Scripts that have received professional productions
are ineligible.”Professional” Includes Equity Showcase and Waiver productions, but does not include amateur and college productions.
7) All manuscripts must be typed and bound. Please include a brief personal resume (phone number please), a short synopsis and a script history. The script history should include information about any prior productions or readings.
8) Staff and faculty of Columbia College Chicago are not eligible. Winners cannot win within five successive years.

All manuscripts must be typed, securely bound, copyrighted and mailed to:
Mr. Chuck Smith
Columbia College Chicago
Theater Dept.
72 E. 11th Street
Chicago, IL 60605.
Announcement of winner will be made on or before October 31, 2007. Only scripts with self-addressed envelopes will be returned.

- $2000
- Fully mounted production in the 2007/2008 season.
- Transportation (within the Continental United
States only) and housing (max. 1 week) during rehearsal period/performances.
- Author must be willing to sign a contract with the college that obligates the playwright to:
1) travel to Chicago during production;
2) acknowledge prize in future programs and publications;
3) future royalties of .1% (3 year time limit);
4) be willing to grant publishing rights to Columbia College Chicago.

$500 A staged reading at Columbia College Chicago that will be directed by a faculty director Playwright will receive tape of reading.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Silver House Theatre 3rd Annual Playwright Festival June 21st-23rd (Houston)

"There is a need within the arts community of Houston for introducing to the city talented new playwrights. It's a void here and the Silver House mission is to fill it."

Reginald Edmund, Festival Director

Edmund continues, "This festival also encourages new playwrights to continue to create exceptional works. The quality of material we have selected for this festival is exceptional. The directors working on these projects established communication with their respective playwright. Although many of the playwrights cannot all be available for this event, it is very important that the writer be a part of the process."

The plays included in the Third Annual Playwright Festival, are:

  • Price of Beauty by Joe Lauinger and directed by Barbara Hartman...The occasion of a wedding provides the catalyst for working friends to take a step toward a deeper connection.
  • Waiting Room by Jody Handley, directed by MJ Hancock...After his crucifixion, Jesus descends into Hell and promptly meets Judas in Hell's waiting room. Thrown into an examination of their relationship and Judas' betrayal, they bare their souls for the final time.
  • Where Time Is Money by Susan Price Monnot and directed by Steve Carpentier.. .Kimberly is on her way to a business meeting when her car breaks down leaving her stranded in a deserted town in the middle of nowhere. Bernice, the only mechanic in this barren place, agrees to fix her car for a price. But the currency in this town is not legal tender, and Kimberly soon learns that the cost for repairs could be her life.
  • Don't Be Goin Deep by Peggy Dougherty, directed by Zona Meyer...The confines of a physical box cause Penelope to step outside a mental box. She opens up to life and discovers that more unites us than divides us.

Since it's creation, The Silver House Theatre remains committed to maintaining its uncompromising mission: to identify and nurture talented emerging artists working in diverse cultural contexts; to stimulate a broader audience and public context for these artists and their work; and to offer opportunities for these artists by providing a strong community base. Silver House has excelled in its mission to train promising artists toward success in the extraordinary world of the performing arts proving that it is indeed the City of Houston's most promising facility to promote young artists. It is here at the Silver House performers gain and develop their craft, technique, style, confidence, and professionalism which is key to their future growth and achievement as a performer.

Dates & Time: July 21-23, 2006 at 8pm

Silver House Theatre

1107 Chartres

Tickets are available at the Silver House Theater. The cost per ticket is $20.00. Each ticket includes access to all four shows and a complimentary buffet. For advanced tickets For additional information, please contact Silver House Theatre at 713-547-0126 or via email at

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

The Essential Theatre presents "King Willie" Saturday, June 23rd (DC)

S. Robert Morgan, Founder/Artistic Director New Play Reading Series
King Willie
By Jamal Williams
Directed by Michelle Orr
(Second Public Reading)
3:00 PM
Saturday June 23, 2007
H Street Playhouse1365 H Street, N.E.

Post-Performance Discussion With Playwright and Director

Admission: Pay-What-You- Can!
For more info. Call (202) 328-0569 or visit The Essential Theatre

* adult language and suggestive sexual overtones!

Made possible by support from Home Box Office, Inc.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

"Diary of a Tired Black Man" screening June 21st (DC)

Invites you to an exclusive sceening of
Diary of a Tired Black Man
Followed by a post-screening talk by filmmaker
Tim Alexander

7:30 PM
Thursday, June 21st at
555 11th Street, NW - Metro Center Metro, 11th & E

(Other Cities Soon To Be Announced)

Men, tickets are going fast - Don't Let the Sistas Snatch all the Seats.
Important Advisory: Rules of Conduct for Men at The Screening
All that - "I told you" and "Ahhh Haahhh..." and "See That" and "See What You Gone Make Me Do" and "Yesss... yesss... yess", will NOT BE ALLOWED. You know the sistas aint going for it. An occassionally hummed "ummm... hmmm" will be okay. Non-Verbals: No finger pointing, or flailing ya palms up like "what you expect me to say". Remember: Outside of the film, you are still "wrong" and "guilty" of something.

Discussion Time Rules:
During the discussion, shut up and let all the blame fall on the filmmaker for tellin it like you hear it in your dreams, but can not say in life.

Fringe Benefits:
Follow these Rules for THIS Screening, and we tell you, the rest of your EVENING will go much better.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Emerald Entertainment Double Bill June 23rd (Fairfield, OH)

Emerald Entertainment presents two shows:

The Family Line - 3:00PM
First on the bill is a staged reading by playwright Peter Lawson Jones, a Cleveland native and County Commissioner in Cuyahoga County. Previous productions include full stagings at Karamu Performing Arts Theatre, Harvard University and Ohio University. Most recently, it enjoyed a staged reading at the Beck Center in Lakewood, Ohio. Mr. Lawson will be in attendance for the reading and participate in a Question and Answer session immediately following the show.

Synopsis: Brad Roberts, his own dreams of professional basketball stardom no longer attainable, seeks redemption through a son. His wife, Sheila, asks only for love and support. Their friends, Walter who is struggling to climb the corporate ladder and Belinda who seeks something better in life, pour our their own hopes and desires. However, the happily married couple soon encounter difficulties to their dreams when Sheila is informed she cannot have children.
Tickets: All seats $5, reserved seating.On sale now by phone or at the door ONLY

Eve in Paradise - 7:30PM
Emerald Entertainment is proud to present an encore performance of their acclaimed play. A portion of the proceeds from this special performance will benefit the newly founded non-profit, "Helping Young Mothers Mentor". This organization specializes in helping young mothers, ages 12-18, who do not have a place of residence during their pregnancy. "It is a blessing to be in a position to support causes that can encourage others," says Greg Stallworth, Playwright and Producer for Emerald Entertainment. The company is excited to bring Donna Winston, Cicely Cobbins and David Livers back to the stage under the direction of Terri Robinson.

Synopsis: A hilarious one-act romantic comedy involving the trials and tribulations of Sanford Davis, a retired and extremely single postal worker. Attempting to avoid another lonely weekend, Sanford seeks companionship through the singles columns. There it is! "Young woman seeks sexy older man to spend pleasurable evenings." Sanford responds to the ad and is soon meeting the new woman of his dreams, Eve. However, Eve comes with two friends, Destiny and Eternity, and none of the women have Sanford's best interest at heart. The three partners in crime take Sanford on a journey through the "Garden of Love" he'll not soon forget.
Tickets: All seats $20, reserved seating.On sale now by phone, at the door, or on-line.
Both productions have been rated PG-13 by the producer.

When: Saturday June 23, 2007 Buy tickets online
Where: Fairfield Community Arts Center - Theater411 Wessel Drive Fairfield, OH 45014 View map
Contact: Community Arts Center Box Office513-867-5348
Sponsor:Emerald Entertainment

Encore Performance of "Crowns" Saturday, June 9th (Decatur, GA)


presents an



AJC writes, "Crowns is an authentic slice of African-American
culture...delectabl e and crowd-pleasing entertainment. "

The Sunday Paper says, "Director Andrea Frye's vibrant IKAM
Productions version is splendidly performed"

Saturday, June 9

1 pm and 8 pm

All tickets are $25. General admission seating!!

Purchase tickets in advance via paypal, send to

You will receive an email confirmation!

See you at the theatre!


Thursday, June 7, 2007

Larry Leon Hamlin, Founder of the National Black Theatre Festival, Passes Away

Larry Leon Hamlin, founder of the National Black Theatre Festival, passed away Wednesday, June 6th. The cause of Hamlin's death was not immediately available. He was 58.

Hamlin was a colorful character, who wore big sunglasses and favored purple in the clothes he wore. He often said things were "marvatastic." Marvtastic is Hamlin's trademark personal expression, a mix of marvelous and fantastic.

The National Black Theatre Festival, which began in 1989, has become a showcase for black theater that attracts thousands of patrons every other summer to Winston-Salem. Such national publications as The New York Times and Time magazine have written about it.

The 2007 festival will begin July 30.

Our sympathies are extended to his family. He was a man of vision and passion and will be sorely missed.

To see the entire article from the Winston-Salem Journal, please click here.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

WorkShop Theater Company Presents "M.A.D" Monday, June 11th

WorkShop Theater Company

(A short play on the absurdity of human conflict )

by Owa

Directed by David M. Pincus


WorkShop Members
Nelson Lugo and Trey Albright

The Samuel French One-Act Play Competition 2007

Monday, June 11th at approximately 9:00 p.m.
(please arrive by 8:30 p.m. Due to Sam French show timing issues, M.A.D. may go up either earlier or later than scheduled)


FESTIVAL DATES: June 4th - 17th, 2007
at the Chernuchin, The American Theatre of Actors

314 West 54th Street, New York, NY

$18.00 and/or Equity Cards Accepted.
Ticket reservations for this year's festival will be accepted beginning May 15th, 2007. Reservations may be placed after that time by calling 212-769-7973 x3 or placed via email at

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Playwriting for Change Workshop (Houston)

There is a particular craft that enables writers to develop meaningful characters, credible situations, how to "tell your story" effectively, and how to convey a message truthfully. This workshop introduces the student to character, story, scene and script development. Through a series of writing exercises and readings we explore the structure, movement and premise that make up a play. The objective of this workshop is for each student to complete a one-act play by class end. Notebook and pen are required. This workshop is designed to advance the playwright's skills in the development of a working script. From out of this process, scenes from the "most promising plays" are featured in a special Showcase at the end of the session at the Silver House Theatre. From there, those works with "production potential" are placed in development for possible Mainstage production.

Reginald Edmund is a founder of Silver House Theatre Playwright Festival, artistic director of the Silver House Theatre and executive producer the Houston Urban Theatre company.

Silver House Theatre
1107 Chartres
Houston, Texas
CLASS SCHEDULE: June 21st, 2007 - August 21st, 2007
TUITION: $60.00 The balance is due within one week after classes begin. Failure to pay tuition balance at designated date will result in dismissal from classes.

For more information call 713-446-1531 or 713-547-0126

Sunday, June 3, 2007


Thom Scott II stars in the blockbuster play WEBEIME at the 8th Annual NEW YORK CITY MIDTOWN INTERNATIONAL THEATRE FESTIVAL!

The Black Gents Of Hollywood present... WEBEIME An original play written and directed by NAACP & ADA Award Winner Layon Gray. 7 Black Men One Story: On death row one man searches his soul for inner peace before his execution while his subconscious ruminates on how he arrived at this place in time.

Starring: Thom Scott II, Lamman Rucker, Jay Jones, Eddie Lewis, Jason McGee, Justin Biko, and Layon Gray


WHERE: Jewel Box at the Workshop Theatre
312 W. 36th St.4th FloorNew York, NY 10018(8th Avenue)
WHEN: July 23, 2007 @ 6:00PM
July 25, 2007 @ 7:45PM
July 26, 2007 @ 5:00PM
July 27, 2007 @ 10:00PM
*July 28, 2007 @ 8:45PM *July 29, 2007 @ 12:45PM
*Tentative schedule based on audience turn out from the 1st three shows.

There is a $3 discount with this code “emie1”


Friday, June 1, 2007

AAPEX Invites You To Ohio For THE FAMILY LINE June 23rd

The African American Playwrights Exchange invites you to join us on Saturday, June 23 for a reading of THE FAMILY LINE by Peter Lawson Jones of Cleveland, Ohio. THE FAMILY LINE will be presented by Greg Stahlworth and Emerald Entertainment. The reading is generating quite a bit of excitement because, in addition to being a playwright, Mr. Jones is also the county commisioner for Cuyahoga County, Ohio (county seat Cleveland).

AAPEX is also honored and excited to have our inaugural event in the incredible state of Ohio, a state which has made and contiues to make amazing contributions to the art of the African American playwright.

For more information on the reading and Emerald Entertainment' s other June 23rd production, please go to For more information on AAPEX (The African American Playwrights Exchange) please contact dramaturg Jaz Dorsey at jazmn47@aol. com.

Talent is NOT a geographical phenomenon. Come to Ohio and go to the theater.

American Negro Playwright Theatre and Tennessee State University Produces "The Blacks: A Clown Show" by Jean Genet

by Jean Genet · Translated from the French by Bernard Frechtman
Directed by ANPT's Artistic Director Barry Scott. Nashville, TN

The Tennessee State University Department of Communications Summer Stock Theatre Program will present Jean Genet's daring and provocative work THE BLACKS: A Clown Show (translated from French by Bernard Frechtman). This production stars TSU theatre students along with noteworthy performers from the Nashville acting community. The artistic team includes set and lighting designs by TSU Technical Director Mark Collino, choreography by Patrick Moore and makeup and costume design by JK Hunter.

THE BLACKS: A Clown Show will be performed at the Tennessee State University Performing Arts Center Cox / Lewis Theater, from July 19 through July 29, 2007.


The Blacks: A Clown Show was written in 1958 at the request of a black actor. But Jean Genet, a white, French novelist and playwright, wrote the drama focusing on a troupe of black actors, who come together to perform a ritual that requires the corpse of a white woman. Originally written for an all-black cast, The Blacks offered a new voice to black theatre that heralded the blunt and confrontational tone of the Black Arts Theatre movement.

An absurdist play, The Blacks breaks with regular conventions of theatre production. "Genet has more stage directions than dialogue in this play," explains Scott. "It is not so much about what is being said and done as it is how it is being said, and how it is being done."

Directions are included in Genet's original notes from 1958: "This play, written, I repeat, by a white man, is intended for white audiences, but if, which is highly unlikely, it is ever performed before a black audience, then a white person, male or female, should be invited every evening . . . But what if no white person is present? Then let white masks be distributed to the black spectators as they enter the theatre. And if the blacks refuse the masks, then let a dummy be used.'"- Jean Genet.

About The American Negro Playwright Theatre. ANPT is a 503-C Non-Profit Organization that has as it main mission, "Telling Stories That Must Be Told". ANPT is the Professional Theatre in residence at Tennessee State University with Barry Scott as its Artistic Director. We appreciate your interest in ANPT and look forward to having a lengthy relationship with you.

The American Negro Playwright Theatre. Barry Scott, Artistic Director. 615-963-5742
ANPT. Coming Soon: Coming Soon: