Sunday, July 17, 2011

Seattle Event: Represent! A Multicultural Playwrights' Festival

The Hansberry Project Hosts
REPRESENT! A Multicultural Playwrights’ Festival
July 19 – 24, 2011

Represent! A Multicultural Playwrights’ Festival
Stage readings of new plays by Keith Josef Adkins, Joann Farias & Lauren Yee

7/19-7/22 7:30 PM
7/23 2 PM, 5PM & 8PM

7/24 at 2PM
In the Bullitt Cabaret at ACT Theatre, 700 Union Street, Downtown Seattle

$5 General Admission
$15 Festival Pass
Includes the opportunity to meet the writers!

ACT Theatre
Ticket Office: (206) 292-7676
700 Union Street, Seattle WA 98101

The Hansberry Project, in a joint venture with eSe Teatro, SIS Productions and Pratidhwani, will host Represent!: A Multicultural Playwrights' Festival July 19-24.

The festival will feature staged readings of 3 new full-length plays, an evening dedicated specifically to showcasing the work of six very talented local writers and a panel about the role of ethnically specific theatres in the development of new work.

According to Hansberry Artistic Director, Valerie Curtis-Newton: 
We have always been clear that the work of the playwright is central to all that we do. They are theatre’s true generative artists. Their vision, passion and craft call the rest of us to the process.

"The Hansberry Project is committed to doing whatever we can do to support them. Last, year, we took a huge step forward -- commissioning our first play. This year, we are showing support for playwrights by hosting our first new play festival. eSe Teatro, SIS Productions and Pratidwhani have accepted our invitation to join us in making a space for playwrights of color to be heard. We’re very excited by the energy that is being generated by this new collaboration. Our hope is that REPRESENT! will become an annual event. ”

A local writers’ showcase kicks off the week. The playwrights whose work will be included are: LaChris Jordan, Reginald A. Jackson, Danielle Villegas, Lonnie Tristan Renteria, Kathy Hsieh and Maggie Lee.

The heart of REPRESENT! is a series of full length readings by some of the most exciting playwrights on the national scene. The selected plays are:

directed by Valerie Curtis-Newton

Built largely on the success of its Black middle class inhabitants (doctors, lawyers, school administrators), Negroville is fraught with dysfunction – loneliness, infidelity, and a loss of history. Over the course of a single day, the town’s well-educated African-American mayor, Cornell Gates, is caught in a series of events that challenge the truth about the town’s history and forever change the future for this set of middle class African-Americans. Presented by The Hansberry Project.

by Joann Farias
directed by Arlene Martinez-Vickers

Jeff, second generation Mexican-American, gives up his Law degree for Anthropology and a trip to Guatemala to study the Mayan's religious believes. This study will initiate a journey of transformation, not only for Jeff, but also for the Mayan shamans he comes in contact with. This insightful text by Joann Farias explores the effect that two colliding cultures can have on each other, in this age of globalization. Presented by eSe Teatro.

SAMSARA by Lauren Yee
directed by Agastya Kohli

When American couple, Katie and Craig, make a last-ditch effort to create a baby of their own, their quest leads them to India to “rent” a surrogate. A hilarious, unsettling look at whether we can truly achieve intimacy in the face of shrinking worlds and expanding boundaries. Presented by SIS Productions and Pratidhwani.

The festival will close with a conversation entitled REPRESENTING: Ethnically-Specific Theatre in the 21st Century. Valerie Curtis-Newton, Kathy Hsieh, Danielle Villegas, Arlene Martinez-Vickers and Agastya Kohli will discuss the role of ethnically specific theatre in the development of new work.

All events will take place in the Bullitt Cabaret at ACT Theatre. Tickets are $5 for individual events/$15 festival passes are available online at, or at the ACT Theatre Ticket Office at 700 Union Street, open daily M-F from 12 noon until 7 p.m., (206) 292-7676.

About The Hansberry Project

The Hansberry Project is a professional theatre laboratory created to present the work of black
theatre artists to as broad and diverse and audience as possible. HP produces main stage shows,
presents staged readings and community conversations, develops new works, and hosts conversations
between artists and audiences. HP is committed to building a community in which the voices of
black theatre artists – artfully expressing their observations, investigations, hopes and dreams - are an
integral part of a rich, full-throated civic conversation.

For more information about the Hansberry Project visit

About eSe Teatro

eSe Teatro is a collective of professionally trained local Latino theatre artists actively providing a creative
home for Latino Artists to explore their craft. eSe Teatro’s mission is to empower local Latino artists to
generate, produce, present, and promote Latino theater, including bilingual, Spanglish and Spanish-speaking

About SIS Productions

SIS Productions is a production company that strives to create, develop and produce quality works that
involve Asian American women, their themes, and Asian American issues. SIS Productions encourages opportunities and support for Asian American women to be involved in all aspects of the production of artistic endeavors.

About Pratidwhani

Pratidhwani is a non-profit cultural organization based in the Seattle area. At its core, Pratidwhani is a group of professionals of Indian heritage, who are extremely enthusiastic and passionate about the artistic traditions of our homeland. The main objective of the organization is the promotion and cultivation of the performing arts of the Indian subcontinent.

About ACT: A Theatre of New Ideas - Raising Consciousness Through Theatre

Located in the heart of downtown Seattle and serving a population of curious, open-minded, and brave
audiences, ACT - A Contemporary Theatre is the only theatre in Seattle dedicated to producing contemporary work with promising playwrights and local performing artists since 1965. A theatre of new ideas, ACT serves as a cultural engine that makes plays, dance, music, and film that touch us.

Because contemporary life demands examination, ACT is driven to inspire and strengthen our diverse community through works that advance our understanding of human life. With more than 100,000 people who attend shows annually, ACT is an interactive community where artists and the public witness, contemplate, and engage in dialogue on today’s thought-provoking issues, ideas and art, presented with intelligence, insight, and humor.

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