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Kadijah Raquel and Ashley D. Kelley in the world premiere of Eve’s Song, written by Patricia Ione Lloyd | Photo credit: Joan Marcus Kadijah Raquel and Ashley D. Kelley in the world premiere of Eve’s Song, written by Patricia Ione Lloyd | Photo credit: Joan Marcus

Off Broadway

Patricia Ione Lloyd’s Eve’s Song Opens Off-Broadway

Kadijah Raquel and Ashley D. Kelley in the world premiere of Eve’s Song, written by Patricia Ione Lloyd | Photo credit: Joan Marcus
Drew Shade

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Beginning previews October 21st, The Public Theater celebrates the official opening of Eve’s Song by Patricia Ione Lloyd on November 7th.

Eve’s Song follows the haunting of a Black family. Deborah (De’Adre Aziza) is dealing with a messy divorce and coming to terms with her daughter, Lauren (Kadijah Raquel), coming out as queer, all while trying to keep things “normal” at home. The play takes a look at our present racial climate through an everyday family, addressing family dynamics, politics at work, and the spirit world, using dark humor and suspense.

The cast includes Karl Green as Mark, Ashley D. Kelley as Upendo, Vernice Miller as Spirit WomanRachel Watson-Jih as Spirit Woman, and Tamara M. Williams as Spirit Woman.

The production extended on Oct 9th before previews even began and will run through December 9 as is directed by Jo Bonney. [envira-gallery id=”20924″]

Founder/Editor-In-Chief of BroadwayBlack.com | Actor | Artist | 1/3 of @OffBookPodcast | Theatre connoisseur | All Audra Everything | Caroline over Change | I'm Not Charl Brown | Norm Lewis is my play cousin | Producing an all-black production of Mame starring Jenifer Lewis in my head

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Events and Happenings

Billy Porter Will Star In His New Play Remember To Live At Primary Stages

Drew Shade

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Billy Porter Pose(FX) promo photo

The Off-Broadway theatre company, Primary Stages, announced their 35th Anniversary season. Launching the lineup includes a new play by Tony Award-winning & Golden Globe-nominated actor Billy Porter entitled Remember To Live. That’s correct; The Pose(FX) star is a playwright. Beginning performances October 29th, Porter will also be starring in the piece.

Billy Porter draped at the Golden Globes Photo via @theebillyporter IG

Back in 2014 Porter’s While I Yet Live debuted at Primary Stages under the direction of Sheryl Kaller, who will also direct this future production set to premiere at the Cherry Lane Theatre.

Remember to Live is told from the perspective of an African-American gay filmmaker. The play centers on the stories of five gay men who all lived through the AIDS crisis and are now grappling with sex, intimacy, redemption, and love all with the indifference the current political climate.

Performances run October 29 through December 22. Additional casting to be announced at a later date.

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Cast List

Tori Sampson’s If Pretty Hurts Ugly Must Be a Muhfucka Announces Cast

Drew Shade

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The world premiere of If Pretty Hurts Ugly Must Be a MuhFucka written by Tori Sampson, who is making her New York City professional debut, and directed by Leah C. Gardiner has found its Off-Broadway cast.

Tori Sampson photo by Zack DeZon

The all-Black cast, choreographed by Raja Feather Kelly, begins performances February 15 and will run for a limited engagement until March 31, 2019, in the Mainstage Theater at Playwrights Horizons (416 W 42nd St, New York, NY 10036)

The cast features:

Rotimi Agbabiaka (Regional: Bootycandy; Father Comes Home from the Wars Parts 1, 2, and 3) as Chorus,

Maechi Aharanwa (Off-Broadway: The Winter’s Tale, An Octoroon) as Ma,

Jason Bowen (Broadway: The Play That Goes Wrong. Off-Broadway: My Mañana Comes) as Dad,

Antoinette Crowe-Legacy (Regional: Seven Guitars, The Model American) as Massassi,

Ian Duff (Off-Broadway: Dutch Masters) as Kasim,

Nike Uche Kadri (Off-Broadway: School Girls…, The Death of the Last BlackMan ) as Akim,

Mirirai Sithole (Off-Broadway: School Girls…, The Homecoming Queen) as Adama, and

Phumzile Sitole (TV: Orange Is the New Black, Elementary, The Good Fight ) as Kaya.

Sampson says “I wanted to use a folktale in a contemporary way to interrogate why, for instance, Viola Davis isn’t ‘classically beautiful’ and why the country had such a hard time aesthetically with Michelle Obama. The first time I saw her I was awestruck; this was a beautiful black woman whose hair is like mine; her skin is like mine; and to see the attributes of her that I really admired, to see the media tear them down really troubles me. I wanted to examine the impact of colonization on Black beauty, and to ask what is Black beauty, in a way that speaks specifically to Black women.”

The creative team includes Louisa Thompson (Scenic Designer), Dede M. Ayite (Costume Designer), Matt Frey (Lighting Designer), and Ian Scot (Original Music and Sound Designer), Alyssa K. Howard (Production Stage Manager), and Noah Silva (Assistant Stage Manager).

 

“Black is beauty, Black is me, Black is what I want to be.” A line from a poem that Brittney, my elder sister, wrote in elementary school. My mother was so proud she insisted that all her daughters recite the phrase as we left home and entered the world.

– Tori Sampson from Playwright’s Perspective: If Pretty Hurts Ugly Must Be a Muhfucka

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