D E B R A   A N N   B Y R D  -   F O U N D E R   &   P R O D U C I N G   A R T I S T I C   D I R E C T O R.

Take Wing And Soar Productions, in partnership with Voza Rivers/New Heritage Theatre Group present the World Primier of MASSINISSA AND THE TRAGEDY OF THE HOUSE OF THUNDER An Epic Play in 2 Acts, Written & Directed by Lorey Hayes | Photos Hubert Williams


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ELIJAH BLACK [Hamilcar Barca] is a recent transplant to New York originally hailing from Akron, OH. He is thrilled to mark his New York theatrical stage debut with such a wonderful cast and crew. Elijah is usually performing on a rock n roll stage and is expecting his 3rd solo CD in early 2012. He has appeared on TV as a Visigoth for Capital One’s Viking commercials. He is also in the feature film and psychological thriller “Bruiser”, also due out in 2012. He would like to thank his family, friends, bandmates and Larry Camp for the never ending support.


PHILLIP BURKE [Bera] is an actor/writer who is thrilled to be acting once again on the New York stage. Off-Broadway: O Night Divine. Selected UK Theatre: Smoke (Edinburgh Fringe Festival), The Fever Dream (London Hampstead Theatre), King Lear, Julius Caesar (both at Glasgow's Shakespeare in the City Festival), and Me and Mrs. Jones (solo show/performer/writer). Television: "One Life to Live"; "Mysteries at the Museum".  Training: MA Classical and Contemporary Text from The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland; BFA Drama and BS Sociology from Syracuse University. He dedicates his performance in the memory of Sally Jones. Follow him on Twitter @PhillipGBurke.


DEBRA ANN BYRD* [u/s Dido] received a B.F.A. degree in acting from Marymount Manhattan College and completes advanced studies at The Public Theater’s Shakespeare Lab.  Her classical roles for stage include Queen Elizabeth in Richard III, The Choragos in Antigone, Mrs. Malaprop in The Rivals, Lady Bracknell in The Importance of Being Earnest, Volumnia in Coriolanus, Winter in Love’s Labors Lost & Hippolyta in A Midsummer Night’s Dream.  Roles in other new American classics include Luce Morgan in Loose by Petronia Paley, Dido Queen of Carthage in Massinissa & Queen Yemmo in Obatala. Member of AEA.


BRYANT CARROLL* [Royal Consul] is very excited to be a part of this production. He has recently moved back to New York from Los Angeles. Were he had been seen in films (Mr. Woodcock, etc.) and the MTV pilot (What Goes On). He has also been seen on Broadway as an original cast member of (Hair @ City Center, Footloose), and numerous Off Broadway productions. He would like to thank all his family, and friends for their love and support. Thanks to the powers that be for bringing home. "Buy the Ticket and Take the Ride."  Thanks to the powers that be for bringing me home.


TINO CHRISTOPHER [Hasdrubal] was born and raised in Hamburg, Germany where he also started his professional acting career in short movies and on stage in plays such as, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “Fear Eats Soul” and “Hitch-The Date Doctor.” After graduating from The Neighborhood Playhouse, Tino has worked on stage and created the Lead in Pieces of Paper Aspirations of 9 /11. Tino is excited to work with Take Wing And Soar Productions again and to be in a full mainstage production at The Poet's Den Theater.


LODRIC COLLINS [Hannibal] A native of Louisiana, Lodric D. Collins has been performing in NYC for the past 8 years.  He has managed to perform in a diverse range of productions, from Baldwin’s “Blues for Mr. Charlie” to Shakespeare’s “Loves, Labors, Lost”.  He has maintained a recurring role on the TV Daytime Drama “All My Children”.  Lodric can also be seen in several films, including the recently released “Last Rites of the Dead” and soon to be released “Good Number” and “No More”.  Lodric is thrilled to finally be working with the TWAS cast and crew.  “They are an awesome, rare, and much needed asset!”


PHILIP DE LA CAL* [Flaminius ] is thrilled to be a part of this forgotten piece of 'Roman history!'  Favorite credits include The Complete Works of William Shakespeare, Abridged!, Assassins, Beauty and the Beast, and Miss Saigon. Philip is thankful for his network of friends, both old and new, who have helped bring him to where he is today, and would like to thank the entire cast and production team for all their hard work, and his family and Sarah for supporting him in all of his endeavors.


TREASURE DAVIDSON [Spanish Lady | u/s Sophonisba] is a University of Michigan graduate with four years experience in the university’s improv troupes.  As an Actors Studio MFA graduate, she is tickled to be apart of her first show with Take Wing and Soar Productions.  I am grateful for the support of my friends, family and colleagues. Thank you for this opportunity and may you be fortunate as well! www.treasuredavidson.com


DIANNE DIXON [Dido Barca] As a singer actress dancer she is creating waves in New York City her theatre credits include Three Girls on Flatbush, Haiti's Children of God, Jamaica the musical (Audelco nomination) Dinner at the Manse (Audelco nomination), Ain't  Misbehaving (revival) One of Our Sons is Missing, An old Woman Remembers at the Billy Holiday Theatre just to name a few.  Her multitalented skills also span a wide variety of global accents and theatrical genres Dianne is humbled for this opportunity to work with TWAS and thanks Lorey Hayes and Debra Ann Byrd for making it happen best wishes to cast and crew.


STACEY J. DOTSON* [Cellius] Stacey is honored for the opportunity to work on this production of Massinissa with Take Wing and Soar Productions. Other NYC credits include Othello (dir. Joe Calarco), Man of God (Audelco Award Nominee – Best Supporting Actor), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and The Reunion: Miles, Bird, and Trane (dir. Chuck Patterson). Regionally he has appeared in Joe Turner’s Come and Gone and Fences. When he is not acting, he is a proud NYC middle school teacher. Peace and be still!


KIRT HARDING [Zeub | Syphax] believes being in the perfect place brings great rewards. This piece allows me to be in a place of continuing to bring stories that have lost their place in world history. He has played many great legends such as  

Toussiant  L’Overture  to  Martin  Luther  King  to  James  Baldwin.    On this journey I only wish that I humbly give everyone at least a moment of enjoyment & some escape. But also I hope I ignite the quest for learning [email protected]


DENNIS JORDAN* [Pubius Scipio, The Elder] is an actor/writer who’s appeared on many off Broadway stages.  Orin in The Director’s Company’s BURRHEAD, Clyde in AUTOEROTICISM IN DETROIT, Jirk in Pedro Pietri’s HAPPY BIRTHDAY MF at the Nuyorican – to name a few.  As playwright, BLOODLIFE was produced at New Voices Theater Co. and RACE TO THE GRAVE at Dixon Place.  He was last seen as Parnell James in New Haarlem Arts Theater’s acclaimed production BLUES FOR MR. CHARLIE.  His next performance promises to be dangereous.  Or stupud.


ANJA LEE* [Sophonisba] is excited to return to TWAS! Recent roles include Cordelia in King Lear, alongside Tony award winner Trezana Beverley, with Take Wing And Soar Productions at the National Black Theater, and Lindsay in Brothers From the Bottom at The Billie Holiday Theatre. Look for Anja in a Short Film, The Fence, being released this Fall, and in a Feature Film called Honeysuckle. Favorite roles include Margaret in Much Ado About Nothing at the Cleveland Public Theatre, the Witch in Love at Stake at New Jersey Repertory Theatre Brut, and Bev in I Came Here to be Insulted at NYU's First Look Theatre. For many years, Anja appeared on All My Children, As the World Turns, One Life to Live, and as a recurring Co Host on the QVC Network. Other credits include various commercials, industrials and voice overs. Anja is represented in both NYC and LA. www.anjalee.net.


TOM MARTIN [Calachi | Ensemble] A native New Yorker who’s theater credits include, Montaigne in 9 Steps from Saint Ann's Street, The Husband in WWJD and for Take ING And Soar: Philo and Proculeius in ANTONY & CLEOPATRA, Barnardine and Francesca in Measure for Measure, Marcellus and 3rd Player in Hamlet, Old Man and Soldier in King Lear and Seyton, Old Man, Murder 3 and Ensemble in Macbeth.  Among His television credits are Barry Rogers (Lawyer) on All My Children and numerous commercials.  I am blessed to be part of this extraordinary production.


DAYO OLATOKUN [Massinissa] Born in Nigera, Raised in Far Rockaway, NY. Attended August Martin High School in Queens, NY. Studied Theater in San Diego, CA. Favorite actor is Will Smith.  Eldest of four children to Timothy and Yemisi Olatokun. Enjoys soulful music and soul food. Doesn't eat to live, but lives to eat. Played collegiate football and basketball. Youth advocate and minister. Gifted, talented, and anointed. Successful on PURPOSE!


MICHAEL RAIMONDI [Cornelius Scipio, The Younger] recently starred in the indie film The Loins of Punjab Presents … winner of the audience awards at the Los Angeles Indian Film Festival, the South Asian International Film Festival, and winner of the NYU First Run Film Festival. Other film and stage credits include: Owen in The Unidentified (Floodgate Features), Chris Keller in All My Sons (Center Stage), Alan Seymour in Picnic (Hunter), and Demetrius in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Lucille Lortel). Michael is a California native who holds degrees from the New School for Drama and Chapman University. Thanks to Sara, Debra, Lorey, and Ren.


BRENDAN SOKLER [u/s Cornelius Scipio] was most recently seen at the Roy Arias Studio's in The Future is in Eggs and Sicilian Limes. Brendan is a graduate of the University of Miami and is a company member of Shakespeare & Company.


LAWRENCE WINSLOW [Tyre] Lawrence Winslow (actor), Theatre credits: Jason (Medea) , MacDuff (Macbeth) , Classical Theatre of Harlem; Aron (Titus Andronicus) Eyes Pond Productions, Malcolm X (The Meeting) Shades of Truth Theatre. Television credits: Col Winston (Army Wives) Lifetime Television, Det. Draper (Law & Order CI) Universal Television.


NATASHA YANNACAÑEDO [Imile] As an actress, writer, and director, Natasha’s work spans independent film, radio, primetime television, and numerous plays. She has a Master of Fine Arts in Acting from the American Conservatory Theater. Natasha is thrilled to be working with Debra Ann and Take Wing and Soar again!  She is also a company member of Judith Shakespeare Company. She is passionate about the craft of acting and public speaking and works an adjunct professor at L.I.M. College and St. Francis College. Natasha also teaches private and group classes for her own company, The N.Y. Acting Company. Please visit www.nyactingcompany.com or email her at [email protected]


ABIGAIL RAMSAY [Assistant Stage Manager] has just completed a run of Lush Valley at HERE Art Center. She recently played Sorell Bliss in the TWAS Classical Lab production of Noel Coward’s Hay Fever and is delighted to be participating in another Take Wing And Soar production and excited to be working on a new classical epic play.  Education/Training: Brown | RADA.


LOREY HAYES [Playwright /Director] Broadway, Television/Film Actress turned writer (an original cast member of “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide”) Lorey Hayes’ is the proud recipient of a 2011 Harlem Arts Alliance; Harlem Community Arts Fund Award in Performing Arts to create a new historic play. She is also a 2011 Princess Grace Playwright Finalist, earned by submission of her dramatic play with music, “Haiti’s Children of God” which recently closed a critically acclaimed run in Harlem at the Dwyer Cultural Center (February/March 2011) The play ran following a successful April 2010 run and was produced in a co-production between Mr. Voza Rivers ( Broadway’s “Sarafinia”/”Asinamali”) and Mr. Rudy Shaw’s Caribbean Arts Repertory.  http://febone1960.net/febone_blog/?p=4086\  INTERVIEW WITH LOREY HAYES Part of the Proceeds from “Haiti’s Children of God” went to Haitian Relief Efforts and Community2Community; a nonprofit organization founded by Haiti’s Children of God leading actress Marie Eusebe following the Haitian Earthquake – to build a water tower, roads and bring schools to her father’s hometown of Petit Groav. Several of Hayes’ scripts were developed in major mentoring programs including: the Bill Cosby Screenwriting Fellows program, Mark Taper Forum, The New York Theater Workshop, Alabama Shakespeare Festival’s Southern Writer’s Project, LA First Stages, New York’s 13th Street Theater, The Negro Ensemble Company, Frederick Douglas Creative Arts Center, Los Angeles Women’s Theater, Frank Silvera’s Creative Workshop and Danny Glover/Ben Guillory’s Los Angeles Robey Theater Company.   “The Dragonfly Tale” co-written with Robert Crear is winner of the 2007 Alabama Shakespeare Festival’s Southern Writer’s Project and a finalist for the Eugene O’Neill 2006 Playwright’s Conference from more than 800 entries.  Several plays have enjoyed acclaimed productions.  “Power Play” enjoyed an extended run at The Billie Holiday Theater, earning Lincoln Center Library’s honor of inclusion in their prestigious Bound Edition of “Highlights from the 2005 New York Theater Season”.  In its previous production, “Power Play” won the coveted Audelco Award for Best play.


GAIL COOPER-HECHT [Costume Designer] work was most recently seen in NYC with the world premieres of BAFO, by Thomas Strelich. at The American Place Theatre, Moses Was Mv Brother at the Kaufman Theater and Zise Khaloymes (Sweet Dreams) for the Folksbeine at Theatre Four  She designed the hit Off-Broadway play Bermuda Avenue Triangle starring Renee Taylor and Joseph Bologna, The Apple Doesn’t Fall directed by Leonard Nimroy, at Broadway’s Lyceum Theatre. Off-Bway’s Party. Other recent designs include Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat for the Hayes, 1776 at the Walnut Street, and Yankel the Smith and The Maiden of Ludmir for the Folksbeine. Gail's designs for Awake and Sing starring Tovah Feldshuh at the Jewish Repertory Theatre earned critical acclaim, as did her work for the long running That’s Life at Theatre East. Additional Broadway and Off-Broadway credits also include the world premieres of Ruthless, Rita MacKenzie's Call Me Ethel, Late Night Comic starring Robert Lupone, The Madwoman of Chaillot starring Geraldine Page and F. Murray Abraham, The Unguided Missle, starring Estelle Parsons, for the American Piece, and Manny Azenberg's production of Those Were The Days. ¬Gail's designs have been seen in several National and International Tours including The Odd Couple starring Tony RandalI and Jack Klugmen,  La Cage… starring Gene Barry and Leroy Reams, Camelot  starring  Robert  Goulet,   The  Sound  of  Music   starring  Debbie  Boone, ...Forum starring Mickey Rooney, three Carol Channing Dolly tours, and Women of the Year starring Barbara Eden.  Gail was nominated for an Emmy Award  for her design of  Purlie for TV’s  “Great Performances”  Series.    She designed the CBS sit com “The Recovery Room” staring Eileen Heckart and Mark Linn, Baker, and for HBO Plaza Suite starring Lee Grant and Jerry Orbach.


CHRIS CUMBERBACH [Scenic Designer] is a versatile and accomplished artist.  His roster of clients include actors LL Cool J and Malik Yoba; radio show host Steve Harvey; recording industry executives Sean Puffy Combs, president Bad Boy Records, Chris Lightly, president of Def Jam Records, Kedar Massenberg, president of Motown Records and Kedar Entertainment, ceo; business owners Vinnie Brown, ceo Naughty Gear Clothing and Veronica, owner of hair salon Sirca Design Inc.  He has created unique interiors using for the Mansion and Millionaires Designers Showcases and the West Harlem Group Assistance Inc, Renaissance Homes. Cumberbatch’s specialties include portraits, storyboards, logos, scenic paintings, furniture design, model homes and office interior design.  His work can be seen in a number of New York area restaurants including Cherry Lounge, Chocolate, Jekyll and Hyde, Justin’s, and Soul Café.  A member of the Local 820 Scenic Artist Union, his film work includes Spike Lee’s Crooklyn, Jungle Fever and Malcolm X; Robert De Niro’s A Bronx Tale; and Forest Whitaker’s Strapped.  He television productions credits include the Whoopi Goldberg Show, Saturday Night Live, soap operas Guiding Light and One Life to Live and most recently Law and Order.  Cumberbatch is the recipient of two Audelco Awards for his work on theatrical productions Meeting Miss Lilly and Julius Caesar set in Africa.  For the Christian Cultural Center’s production of The Wiz, he served as co-designer and lead scenic instructor.  Cumberbatch is a graduate of Art and Design High School and Parsons School of Design.


JAMES ‘PREZ’ CARTER [Light Designer]  Born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y.  James started out in the entertainment business as an actor, than learned all the trades of behind the scene of shows, films and TV. James just finished designing lights for Do Wop Love, Accept/Except at NBT in Harlem, NY., Antony and Cleopatra at The Poet Den, N.Y.  Currently working at Good Morning America (ABC-12 Years working in the Lighting Dept). James also worked at The World Famous Apollo Theatre ( 18 years), other places that James also worked on Broadway, off Bway and Tours with such plays as: Harlem Coffee Shop, Your Arms Too Short to Box with God, Smokey Joe’s Café, The Boys Choir of Harlem,  Mama I Want to Sing,  Comin Uptown,  Sophisticated Ladies.  He has won the 2010 Audelco Award for PECONG and been nominated for an Audelco Recognition Award for best light designer on the show: Sango: Lord Of Thunder at The NBT in 2006 and 2010 for The Shaqueeua Chronicles. Website: http://jamesecarter.webs.com. Contact James at [email protected] or (212) 860-3639 M-Sat 11a-7p


DAVID D. WRIGHT [Sound Designer] has garnered seven Vivian Robinson AUDELCO Awards for Excellence in Black Theatre He has sound designed in theatres all over the metropolitan area and is thankful for this opportunity to provide his unique talent to this Take Wing and Soar production David praises Olodumare the Ancestors and Orisha for his success.  He can be reached at [email protected]


PENNY LANDAU/Maya PR [Press Rep] saw her first Broadway show, West Side Story, when she was 9 years old. Since then, she has performed, stage managed, directed, teched, taught and, for the last 27 years, run her own PR firm. Maya PR has repped White’s Lies (Tuc Watkins, Betty Buckley & Peter Scolari); Bermuda Avenue Triangle (Renee Taylor & Joe Bologna); the multi-award winning Jelly Roll! starring Vernel Bagneris; Edge starring Angelica Torn as Sylvia Plath (NY, London, Australia & New Zealand); Third Eye Rep’s acclaimed production of Godspell (Leslie Kritzer, Shoshanna Bean, Chad Kimball, Barrett Foa, Capathia Jenkins); A Broadway Diva Christmas (Kathy Brier, Ellen Green, Maya Days, Marla Schaffel & Christine Pedi); Christmas with the Crawfords (starring Joey Arias); BarBara Luna (“Star Trek”), France Nuyen (Joy Luck Club),  Geri Jewell (“Deadwood” & “Facts of Life”), Kathy Garver (“Family Affair”), playwrights Dennis Richard, Ryan Schube & Anthony Laura; New Zealand author  Nathan Hoturoa Gray (First Pass Under Heaven); Take Wing And Soar Prods; Big Apple Comic-Con; League of Professional Theatre Women; Manhattan Association of Cabarets & Clubs (Founding Charter Member); Singers Forum; the  feature film An Affirmative Act; & the upcoming play Oswald (LA, NYC, London, Dallas). As always, to the late, Madeline Lee Gilford, thanks for being you. www.mayaprny.com


THYSHA M. SHABAZZ [Marketing and Publicity] established Shabazz Communications, Inc. in September 2006 and has worked in the media industry for over fifteen years.  Shabazz Communications, is a full-service Communications & Publicity Company and has represented and worked with: Tavis Smiley, SmileyBooks, ESSENCE Magazine, Bre from America's Next Top Model and many more. Currently, Shabazz Communications is growing and continuing to deliver top-notch communication services to clients across the nation and the world. Shabazz Communications' mission is to represent celebrities, corporate entities, artists, community activists, authors and various organizations that are dedicated to empowering society and culture.


SARA KOCH CASTING [Casting] is honored to have been given the opportunity to cast Massinissa and the Tragedy of the House of Thunder. Previous and current projects include: “Dirty Hands” (Garden State Film Festival, Manalapan Independent Film Festival), “Morado” (International Film Festival Manhattan, Offshoot Film Festival), “Illegal” (Boston Latino International Film   Festival,   The   Independents   Film   Festival),     “A   Series   of   Strange Occurrences” (New York City Short Film Festival, The Rochester Short Film Festival) among many others. Sara Koch would like to personally thank Lorey Hayes, Debra Ann Byrd of Take Wing and Soar and the entire cast and crew of Massinissa.


AIXA KENDRICK [House Manager] is a multimedia sorceress, ninja starchild and life explorer from the 10th dimension. She is thoroughly thrilled and honored to always support Take Wing And Soar and assist this fabulous production of Lorey Hayes' Massinissa.  Continued magic and kudos to Debra Ann Byrd, cast and crew! Feel free to telecommunicate and commune with her via [email protected] or www.MedicineWomenProductions.com for upcoming cosmic experiences, projects and effervescent intellectual discourse. : )


LAZETTE MCCANTS [Director of Volunteer Services] was introduced to the “Black Theatre Experience”, by Ms. Vivian Robinson, the founder of AUDELCO and became an AUDELCO member in 1983.  Her experience with AUDELCO included being a member of the Board of Directors, Nominating Committee and Event and Volunteer Coordinator. She has enthusiastically supported arts and culture in general and BlackTheatre, in particular.  Over the years, she has volunteered and provided professional services for groups that include Dr. Barbara Ann Teer’s National Black Theatre, Take Wing and Soar Productions, Rhythm Color Associates, SweetPea Producers, Harlem Week, ImageNation, AUDELCO and more. LaZette currently serves as the Director of Volunteer Services for Take Wing and Soar Productions (TWAS). She has received the President’s Volunteer Service Award from the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation and the AUDELCO Board of Directors Award for Tireless & Consistent performance as a Volunteer to Black Theatre.  LaZette continues to volunteer and consult with Arts and Culture and Community Service organizations. Over the past year, she has begun to develop a group called Volunteer Divas Plus – Volunteers for Arts & Culture and Community. The group includes theatre lovers, actors, producers, playwrights and students. Her goal is to look for ways to be involved and perpetuate the spirit of volunteerism while passing on skills, knowledge, commitment and experience to theatre in general and Classical and Black Theatre in particular.


TIMOTHY D. STICKNEY* [Associate Artistic Director/Acting Coach] has been working with Take Wing and Soar Productions since it's inaugural season. Timothy has led award-nominated productions of Richard III and Hamlet for TWAS; as well as Co-directing Pecong; Directing King Lear; work shopping Julius Caesar, Othello and Macbeth.  For The Stratford Shakespeare Festival Timothy was featured in The Tempest and Caesar and Cleopatra with Christopher Plummer which was recorded for broadcast and theatrical release by Bravo and CTV.  "All my Love and Thanks to Lee for boundless Support, Faith and Love."  Member of AEA.


TAKE WING AND SOAR PRODUCTIONS, INC. [Producer] founded in 1999 by classically trained actress Debra Ann Byrd, is a women-led, New York State, 501(c) 3 Professional Theatre Arts Corporation, dedicated to supporting women, youth & especially classically trained actors of color.  In its brief history, Take Wing And Soar Productions has enjoyed many successes including the creation of The TWAS Theatre Project, The TWAS Classical Lab Reading Series, The Take Wing And Soar “Spirit of Excellence Awards”, the Harlem Shakespeare Workshop and the Hackney Harlem International Youth Project. The theatre company is the 2009-2010 recipient of the LPTW Lucille Lortel Award, presented in recognition of the theatre’s body of work in the community, audience development in Harlem – and in celebration of the “International Exchange Program” between Take Wing And Soar Productions and London’s Hackney Empire Theatre. Other honors include five AUDELCO Awards & 24 AUDELCO  Award  nominations for  its  mainstage  productions  of  Richard III, The Darker Face of the Earth, Hamlet, Medea, King Lear, Pecong and ANTONY & CLEOPATRA.  MASSINISSA is TWAS’ 31st production and tenth main stage project. For more information about Take Wing And Soar visit us online at www.takewingandsoar.org.


VOZA RIVERS | NEW HERITAGE THEATRE GROUP [Producer] is the oldest Black nonprofit theater company in New York City. NHTG was originally established in 1964 under the name New Heritage Repertory Theatre by the late Roger Furman, a revered playwright, director, actor and lecturer who began his career in the 1940s with the American Negro Theatre in Harlem. It was created to present entertaining, informative and quality productions and to preserve and institutionalize classic works of Black theatre. In 1983, Voza Rivers, an award winning music and theatre producer took over the company.  Today, New Heritage Theatre Group serves the community through presentations of entertaining, informative and quality productions of performing arts events, stage readings, and documentary shorts and films. Through its umbrella organizations Impact Repertory Theatre, Furman Theatre Rep and New Heritage Films we reach out to the New York City and world community, giving training, exposure and experience to new and emerging artists. Our works reflect the historical, social, and political experiences of African and Latino descendants in America and abroad. We seek to bring attention to works by international writers, directors and performing artists who have achieved success in their respective country but lack exposure in the United States.


POET’S DEN THEATER | EAST HARLEM PRESENTS We want to make the arts an integral part of the neighborhood growth for now and the future to stimulate and encourage performing arts and fine arts and to encourage public interest in the arts. We envision an entity that would showcase the area's rich artistic culture, produce collaborations between resident and international artists and pump the already growing local economy.  "The idea is to hold activities where we celebrate a lot of the arts of East Harlem and bring in artists from outside."   "We're trying to generate additional excitement around our individual events, and create a model for a collaborative international festival," Cultural participation may be a “path of engagement” to other forms of civic participation.  Further, cultural participation may provide a basis for strengthening community bonds. This initiative provides a meeting ground for people interested in expanding arts and cultural participation and people interested in strengthening communities


ACTORS’ EQUITY ASSOCIATION [AEA] founded in 1913, represents more than 45,000 actors and stage managers in the United States.  Equity seeks to advance promote and foster the art of live theatre as an essential component of our society.  Equity negotiates wages and working conditions, providing a wide range of benefits, including health and pension plans.  AEA is a member of the AFL-CIO, and is affiliated with FIA, an international organization of performing arts unions.  The Equity emblem is our mark of excellence.  www.actorsequity.org




Producing Artistic Director

Debra Ann Byrd



Executive Producer

Voza Rivers



Elijah Black, Phillip Burke, Debra Ann Byrd*, Bryant Carroll*, Tino Christopher, Lodric D. Collins, Phillip de la Cal*, Treasure Davidson, Dianne Dixon, Stacey J. Dotson*, Michal Fraser, Kirt A. Harding, Dennis Jordan*, Anja Lee*, Tom Martin, Dayo Olatokun, Michael Raimondi, Brendan Sokler, Lawrence Winslow*, Natasha Yannacaňedo*



Author/Director: Lorey Hayes

Scenic Design:

Chris Cumberbach

Costume Design:

Gail Cooper-Hecht

Sound Design:

David D. Wright

Lighting Design:

James Carter


Phillip de la Cal*


Sara Koch Casting

Asst Stage Manager:

Abagail Ramsay

House Management:

Aixa Kendrick


Joshua Glenn

& Mark Benavides





Graphic Art:  dagrafix designs, ltd


Production Photograpy:  

Hubert Williams


Publicity Photos:

Carmen de Jesus



Shabazz Communications Inc.


DEC 7th


DEC 18th