Advanced Scene Study | September 22 – December 1 Playwrights Lab | Septemer 20 – November 22Read More
-Bennet Guillory, Producing Artistic Director
The City of Los Angeles and the Leimert Park Vision Theater Consortium are proud to announce the participation of 14 historic and emerging theater companies who will present new and original works at the First Annual Leimert Park Village Theatre Festival: A Festival of Staged Readings, held August 28 – 31, 2014. This 4-day festival also includes Q&A following the plays and edutainment panels about the history and future of the Vision Theatre.
Opening night, Thursday August 28th, the LPVTF presents James Bronson’s “CRENSHAW BOULEVARD” produced by the Bronson Theatre Group and directed by Art Evans, with reception following. The closing night gala, Sunday, August 31st, will serve as an opportunity for the City of Los Angeles and the Community to recognize actress Marla Gibbs, whose efforts in 1980 prompted the saving and restoration of the historic Vision Theatre. Ms. Gibbs will receive a proclamation from the City of Los Angeles, followed by a revival of her performance in “CHECKMATES”, a work originally produced and performed by Marla at Crossroads Arts Academy alongside the late Paul Winfield.
The Festival is centered in Leimert Park Village at four separate facilities where the readings will take place. They include the Barbara Morrison Performing Arts Center, Fernando Pullum Performing Arts Center, the Regency West, and the historic Leimert Park Vision Theater.
The Staged Readings in this year’s festival include “Checkmates” produced by the Marla Gibbs’ Crossroads Arts Academy, written by Ron Milner and directed by Faye Hauser; “Hollywood in the Hood” produced by the Watts Village Theatre Company, written by Lynn Manning and directed by Hector Rodriguez; “A House Dismantled” produced by the Bilingual Foundation of the Arts, translated by Margarita Lamas and directed by Denise Blasor & Margarita Lamas; “Swing Low Sweet Steamboat” produced by the Performing Arts Society of Los Angeles, written by Ron Daniels and directed by Ernest Dillihay; “Howlin’ Blues and Dirty Dogs” produced by Theatre Perception Consortium, written by Larry James Robinson, Carla DuPree Clark & Tu’Nook and directed by Carla DuPree Clark; “Paul Robeson in Berlin” produced by The Robey Theatre Company, written Robert Coles & Bartley McSwine and directed by Ben Guillory; “The Lion King” produced by theFernando Pullum Performing Arts Center, adapted and directed by Brandon Rainey; “Livin’ Fat” produced by Foxx Follies Theatre Workshop, written by Judy Ann Mason and directed by Ian Foxx; “Black Man of Happiness” produced by the Pasadena Playhouse, written by Peter Harris and directed by Alison De LA Cruz; “The Journals of Osborne P. Anderson” produced by Lange Productions, written and directed by Ted Lange; “In the Blink of an Eye” produced by Master Peace Theater Players, written by Cassandra Sanders & Obba Babatunde and directed by Obba Babatunde; “Payments Due” produced by Oasis Creative Dramatics, written by Carol Connolly and directed by Ursaline Bryant; and “Our Family Secret” produced by Tri-Coastal Entertainment Corp, written by Sanetta Gipson & Joe Plummer and directed by Tico Wells; with panels by the Leimert Park International Dance Association; and Arts Culture Entertainment, LLC.
The Vision Theater’s goal when its 750 seat theater is fully operational in the fall of 2016 is to build this event into its season along with future theatrical productions, concerts, convention, and special events to a level that is capable of replicating the notoriety of New York’s Apollo Theatre that has served the people of New York and Harlem. The Festival will position Leimert Park Village as the center for theater in South Los Angeles and will bring creative industry jobs and revenue to the area, and provide educational support to young and seasoned artists as well as bolster tourism in South LA. With the addition of the Crenshaw Metro Line, Leimert Park Village is destined to become a booming commercial and artistic hub.
The Leimert Park Theatre Festival will lay the groundwork for a bi-annual West Coast Theatre Festival to compliment the east coast’s, National Black Theater Festival, held bi-annually in Winston-Salem, NC. The Leimert Park Village Theatre Festival will coincide with the completed renovation of the 750-seat theatre and the Vision’s first fully produced season in 2016. The festival’s use of an array of creative industry resources complement the community initiated Leimert Park 20/20 Vision plan for the future.
The Leimert Park Theatre Festival is sponsored by the Leimert Park Vision Theatre Consortium which consists of the following organizations and supporters: City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs’ Vision Theatre, Friends of the Vision Theatre, Barbara Morrison Performing Arts Center, Inner City Cultural Center, the Madrid Theatre, Twinbiz, Maximizing Human Potential, Conscious Youth Global Network, and the offices of Councilmember and President Herb J. Wesson, Jr. and Councilmember Curren D. Price, Jr.
For a more detailed schedule of the festival and ticket information contact the Vision Theater at (323) 290-2386, or email: firstname.lastname@example.orgRead More
In 1996, The Robey Theatre Company, undertook its first production, Patrick Sheane Duncan’s, Souls On Fire, a play that sought to shine a light and create discussion around the Rodney King Riots of 1992. The play was selected as The Robey Theatre Company’s first production because the subject and core message resonated with the ideals of the budding theatre company.
This play has a social conscience, it is current, it is about a very important issue. It is something that will make a difference and make people think. That’s what the Robey Theatre Company is about, as well as giving people a place to act
LA Times, April 28, 1996
Patrick Sheane Duncan, who’d just written the critically acclaimed Mr. Holland’s Opus garnered some doubt as to whether or not he could capture the emotion and tension of the Rodey King Riots. Danny Glover, when asked if Patrick was the right voice replied,
It was a wonderful piece of work, that’s all that mattered. We assessed its validity in terms of the issue, by its attempt to bring us the voices out there. It wasn’t about a ‘black writer’ or a ‘Latino writer.’ . . . We often get into that, and we move to the wrong place. The possibilities reside in all of us–you can’t limit it to one race. That’s a problem in this country: We say that the possibilities don’t lie in all of us.
LA Times, April 28, 1996
The play was mounted at the Met Theatre and ran May 3rd to June 16th with two preview performances on May 1st and 2nd.
Oscar Arguello (Book), Jon Clair (Chick), Steve Hartley (Riley), Christian Keiber (MacLaughlin), Bernie Martinez (Z-Win), Skye McKenzie (Charles John Harvey), Trent Miller (Book), Pedro Pano (AKA), Jeris Lee Poindexter (Lenny), Sam Scarber (Miles), M. Darnell Suttles (Short Stack), Charo Toledo (Benita), Breck White (Dutch Boy), Ping Wu (Huong)
Set design, Thomas A. Brown; lighting design, Marianne Schneller; sound design, Charles Dayton; costume design, Iona MarshallRead More
Thank you for your tremendous contributions through your works and your life, we honor you.Read More
Thank you to the actors, playwrights, directors, production team, Robey staff, volunteers, but most importantly YOU, our audience! The Robey Theatre Company thanks our audience for supporting the 1st Inaugural Paul Robeson Theatre Festival and for your continued support the past 20 years!Read More
Acclaimed blues singer MARY BRIDGET DAVIES–nominated for a Tony® this year in the “Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical” category for her Broadway lead in “A Night With Janis Joplin”–will return to The Pasadena Playhouse for four nights July 17-20. She first wowed Pasadena, CA crowds in 2013 with the Janis Joplin role, marking The Playhouse’s highest-grossing production in its history.
The new show, dubbed PLAYHOUSE ROCKS! with Tony® Nominee Powerhouse MARY BRIDGET DAVIES, will incorporate Janis Joplin and Big Brother & The Holding Company hits, blues, rock and soul songs as well as music from some Ms. Davies’ other favorite artists like Etta James, Al Green, Aretha Franklin, Joe Cocker, Jimi Hendrix, The Band and Amy Winehouse. The show–being curated by iconic MC5 guitarist Wayne Kramer, and featuring The Doors’ guitarist Robby Krieger—will also have several surprise guest star appearances including Stephen Perkins (Jane’s Addiction), Eric Gardner (Gnarls Barkley), Bob Mothersbaugh (Devo) and Carl Restivo (Tom Morello’s Freedom Fighter Orchestra); for specific guest dates, continue to check out PasadenaPlayhouse.org.Read More