Position: Creative Team
Christina Cottles’s true calling, writing for the stage, is inspired from her Southern Louisiana roots and her experiences growing up here in Los Angeles. Cottles’ s plays delve into issues ranging from “maternal abandonment” in the African-American community to the 2005 Hurricane Katrina disaster. Her play “A Sunday Morning Kind of Gal,” has been staged twice, once in Los Angeles and again in Baton Rouge, LA. Cottles’s second play, “Crescent City Ghosts” as well as “A Sunday Morning Kind of Gal” has received several staged readings at The Vision Theatre. She has also had the opportunity to hone her craft in the Robey Theatre Playwrights Lab while working as a special education teacher at a local high school here in Los Angeles.
Position: Creative Team, Playwright
Randy Ross, Ph.D. writes plays, fiction, and nonfiction and he’s been playing jazz saxophone for over half a century.
Randy’s newest play, BIRDLAND BLUE (a fictionalized riff on an eventful evening confronting trumpeter Miles Davis and his great 1959 sextet), benefitted from his participation in workshops convened by International Black Writers and Artists of Los Angeles (IBWA-LA) and The Robey Theatre Company’s Playwrights Lab. Robey staged the premier reading of BIRDLAND BLUE at its 2017 Paul Robeson Theatre Festival. Robey also staged multiple readings of Randy’s earlier play, 92 GROVE STREET (Hard-pressed by his publisher and the specter of Malcolm’s hastened demise, Alex Haley struggles to work with his subject to complete The Autobiography of Malcolm X before it’s too late.)
Randy’s short stories have been published in African American Review, Maryland Review, and Obsidian II, among others. He has published one story collection (The Chocolate Man) and co-edited another (Griots Beneath the Baobab). Dr. Ross’s nonfiction books include Government and the Private Sector: Who Should Do What? Many of his public-policy essays have been published in Education Week and the Los Angeles Times. (Photo Credit: Paul Batson, Unlimited Images Photography
Position: Creative Team
Nicole Rowland (Stage Manager) graduated with a BA in Theatre Arts from Lenoir Rhyne College in Hickory, NC. Shows worked on in the past include Sweeney Todd, The Crucible, The Wiz. Rowland Currently works in digital advertising at FOX.
Position: Set Designer
Micheal David Ricks (Director/ Production Stage Manager/ Set Designer/ Lighting designer) who has been working with The Robey Theatre Company for four years and was the set designer for The Magnificent Dunbar Hotel.
Position: Playwright, Assistant Stage Manager, Prop Master
Melvin Ishmael Johnson- Founder of Dramastage-Qumran and Veterans Community Theater Workshop.
Born December 1, 1947, in Greenville, Mississippi. Melvin attended Mississippi Valley State University. United States Marine Corp (1969- 71), honorable discharge. He attended Eastern Michigan University and is one of the Co-Founders of the African Renaissance Theater Company of Detroit, Michigan. (1973-1980)
As a playwright he has authored: Surviving the Nickel, Catch the Tiger, Number One Recruit, Nail Heads and The Emperor’s Last Performance. He is the co-author of: The JOI Club with Judith Bowman and If the SHU Fits: Voices from Solitary Confinement with Andy Griggs. Johnson developed the Anti-Violence Situation Coping Group as a conflict resolution group for military veterans and is author of the plays, Nobody Told Us and The Hero Within about homeless military veterans. *He teaches a weekly Veterans Community Theater Workshop that trains veterans for Stage Management jobs in the Theater.
- Leonard Lennox Jones, The Magnificent Dunbar Hotel
Assistant Stage Manager/Prop Master:
- Knock Me A Kiss
- The Paul Robeson Theatre Festival
- The Emperor’s Last Performance
Levy Lee Simonis a multiple award-winning writer of over twenty produced plays, that include the, For the Love of Freedom trilogy, the recipient of several NAACP Nominations and Awards, and an Ovation Nomination. Also: The Bow Wow Club, (Lorraine Hansberry Award) Same Train, (OBBR Award) The Guest at Central Park West, (Audelco Award) Smell the Power, (New Plays Award) The Magnificent Dunbar Hotel, The Stuttering Preacher, and The Last Revolutionary.
As an actor he has appeared, most notably in: the Pulitzer Prize winning, Tony nominated, The Kentucky Cycle and the acclaimed production of Ms. Ever’s Boys, at the Barbican and Bristol Old Vic in England. His directing credits are highlighted with productions of; Amiri Baraka’s, Dutchman, Josh Wilder’ s, Leftovers, and Javon Johnson’s, Breathe, which will be a mainstage production at the NBTF 2017. His film adaptation of The Last Revolutionary, in which he also plays the lead role, premiered at the Pan African Film Festival 2017, and will be seen this summer at both the NBTF Film Festival and The Bronze Lens Film Festival in Atlanta.
- For the Love of Freedom:
- Part I: Toussaint
- Part II: Dessalines
- Part III: Christophe
- Play readings from: The Haitian Trilogy
- The Magnificent Dunbar Hotel
George W. Corbin’s work has been showcased in the NAACP’s 10 Minute Theatre Festivals (Hi Lo LA, Phone Booth, The Robe, and the Window Man). Towne Street Theatre’s Ten-Minute Play Festival produced his plays (Galveston and Grave Concerns). He’s been an artist in the playwright’s lab at the Robey Company and one of his plays (Plantin) was performed at the Robey’s 2015 theatre festival. In 2016 George’s full-length play (Sabado Mornings) was produced at The Studio/Stage. Another new full-length play of George’s (The Wrong Kind of People) is planned for a reading this Fall.
- Plantin’ Play readings from: The Paul Robeson Theatre Festival 2014
Position: Actor, Assistant Director, Associate Producer, Director
Dwain A. Perry (Director) Most recently seen in The Robey Theatre Company’ s, The Magnificent Dunbar Hotel by Levy Lee Simon at the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston -Salem.
Other Robey credits include, The Last Season, Bronzeville, The Emperor’s Last Performance. and Anna Lucasta. Directing credits include, Permanent Collection, The River Niger. Transitions, and Knock Me a Kiss.
- Rudolf Slocum, Anna Lucasta
- Jodie Goodwin, Bronzeville 2009 & 2011
- n/a, Camp Logan,
- Charles Gilpin, The Emperor’s Last Performance
- n/a, The Last Season
- Lucius Lomax, The Magnificent Dunbar Hotel
- A House With No Walls Play reading from:
A Medley of One-Act Plays
- Deep River Play reading from: The Paul Robeson Theatre Festival 2014
- Knock Me A Kiss
- Miss Pauline Play reading from: The Paul Robeson Theatre Festival 2014
- Permanent Collection
- The River Niger
Julie Taiwo Oniis a Nigerian-American playwright and English professor with an interest in exploring the African diaspora through narrative. Recent plays include Denim, Black-Proof, and Chisel, a story that dis plays the oppression of people with albinism in Tanzania. Oni is a member of The Robey ‘s Playwrights Lab. BA: Pepperdine; MFA: USC. www.julietaiwooni.com
- ETHIOP-ICA Play reading from: The Paul Robeson Theatre Festival 2014
Position: Playwright, Actress, Vocal Coach
Cydney Wayne Davis is a professional singer, actress, vocal coach, songwriter and playwright.
She has sung background for Marvin Gaye, Ray Charles, Barry White, Joe Cocker, Donna Summer, Stevie Wonder, Marilyn McCoo & Billy Davis Jr., and Diana Ross and she also co-wrote the single “You’re Go11na Love It.”
As a member of the Robey Theatre Company she has performed in The River Niger as Grandma Wilhelmina, Transitions as Verlie, The Magnificent Dunbar Hotel as Charlotta Bass and also wrote the theme song” Meet Me at the Dunbar”. Cydney won the 2013 NAACP’s Theatre Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Theresa in Robey’s Ana Lucasta. Her play United Front about the plight of HIV/AIDS was featured in the NAACP Ten Minute Play Festival in 2011 and 2013.
She recently co-starred in the film Chocolate City and Chocolate City 2 – Vegas Strip as the sassy church lady, Sister Beatrice.
CYDNEY WAYNE DAVIS
Vocal Arts Studio
171 N. La Brea Ave.
Inglewood, CA 90302
- An Evening of Six Eclectic Scenes
- Theresa Lucasta, Anna Lucasta
- Charlotta Bass, The Magnificent Dunbar Hotel
- The Magnificent Dunbar Hotel