World Drama 2019 Speakers Series – African American / Black Theatre

This fall, the World Drama course at NYU Steinhardt / Program in Educational Theatre welcomes a variety of theatre professionals to discuss the diverse theatre companies here in New York City. Please join us to hear about the companies and their artistic staff, productions, and vision for theatre in our great city.

The second event is Wednesday, November 6

6:45 – 8:25PM

Pless Hall, 1st Floor Lounge

82 Washington Square East

Panelists include:

Andrew Clarke – Braata Productions

Andrew Clarke is a singer, actor, aspiring playwright/director and serves as founder/artistic director for both Braata Folk Singers and Braata Productions.  A graduate of the Edna Manley College (Faculty of Drama), Clarke is a 2008 recipient of the Prime Minister’s Youth Award for Excellence in Arts and Culture.  In that same year he also represented Jamaica at the World Championships for the Performing Arts in Hollywood, California where he was crowned Grand Champion Performer of the World.

His stage credits include David Heron’s “Ecstasy” (UK tour) and a Jamaican adaptation of James Baldwin’s “Amen Corner” for which he was nominated for Best Actor in a Lead Role by the International Theatre Institute – Jamaica Chapter (ITI) Actor Boy Awards (Jamaica’s Tony Awards). An accomplished vocalist with 30 gold medals and numerous national awards from the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission’s (JCDC) National Festival of the Performing Arts Competition in Speech, Music and Drama. Other awards include 15 overall National Awards including Best Actor and Male Vocalist.

AJ Muhammad – Fire This Time Festival

A.J. Muhammad has a background in audience development, arts administration, dramaturgy and library public services. He has dramaturged many productions directed by the educator, activist and director Dr. Daniel Banks in New York City, regionally and internationally. Along with Neyda Martinez he co-developed and implemented the pilot phase of the New Audience Project, an initiative to develop and train Latina cultural ambassadors in support of Latino arts institutions through arts immersion, workforce development and micro-entrepreneurism. The New Audience Project received a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation and was incubated at The Fire This Time Festival’s East 4th St. neighbor Teatro Circulo. A.J. also completed the Artist Manager Program (AMP) training program at The Field.

Shaun Neblett – Changing Perceptions Theater

Over the past 17 years, Shaun Neblett has created and managed multiple youth theater programs throughout low-income neighborhoods in New York City.  He is the founder of Changing Perceptions Theater, a theater company that provides theater and performance training to youth in urban communities. As a playwright, Shaun was produced Off- Broadway when he was 18 years old at the Public Theater. Since then, his plays have been produced internationally, Off- Broadway and at regional theater venues. He is completing his “7 Homages for 7 MCs” play cycle, which is a suite of seven original plays that originate from the spirit of classic hip-hop albums. Shaun’s first completed play in the cycle pays tribute to the rapper Nas’ debut album Illmatic and was referenced by African American scholar Dr. Michael Eric Dyson as “A great play that evokes a sense of history and a sense of intimacy with people who nurture you, surround you and are a mystery to you.”

If you wish to attend, RSVP here.

Our final event for the semester will be Wednesday, December 4 – Asian American Theatre. Please let Dr. Jonathan Jones know if you have any questions.