fbpx Black Theatre | HowlRound Theatre Commons

Black Theatre

The rich tradition and current state of Black Theatre is explored in this content, including discussions analyzing contemporary work and pieces honoring trailblazers. Consider starting with the Daughters of Lorraine podcast, the Journal series on the state of Black theatre, or the Journal series on Black women in the performing arts.

The Latest

Development of Malawian Theatre
Podcast
Development of Malawian Theatre
A Conversation with Maxwell Chiphinga
by Fumbani Innot Phiri, Maxwell Chiphinga
9 November 2022
Theatre Academics
Podcast
Theatre Academics
A Conversation with Roselyn Madalo Dzanja
by Fumbani Innot Phiri, Roselyn Madalo Dzanja
2 November 2022
Dance for Change
Podcast
Dance for Change
A Conversation with Robert Magasa
by Fumbani Innot Phiri, Robert Magasa
26 October 2022
Critical Stages in Malawian Contemporary Theatre teaser image with the title at the top and a picture of the guest in the middle.
Development of Malawian Theatre
Podcast

Development of Malawian Theatre

A Conversation with Maxwell Chiphinga

9 November 2022

Maxwell Ciphinga, better known as Max DC, has weathered massive changes in the audience, form, and funding of Malawian theatre throughout his four-decade career. In this interview, he shares his perspective on the industry and discusses his policy and producorial work as the president of Malawi’s new National Theatre Association.

Critical Stages in Malawian Contemporary Theatre teaser image with the title at the top and a picture of the guest in the middle.
Theatre Academics
Podcast

Theatre Academics

A Conversation with Roselyn Madalo Dzanja

2 November 2022

As a scholar, educator, and practitioner of theatre, Roselyn Madalo Dzanja knows Malawi’s theatrical landscape well. In this interview, she discusses challenges Malawian women face when pursuing an acting career, the need for artistic independence from international donors, possibilities for Chichewa-language drama, and more.

Critical Stages in Malawian Contemporary Theatre teaser image with the title at the top and a picture of the guest in the middle.
Dance for Change
Podcast

Dance for Change

A Conversation with Robert Magasa

26 October 2022

Robert Magasa is an experienced dancer, choreographer, and actor who trained in Zimbabwe and now runs UjeNi Dance Ensemble Theatre in Malawi. In this interview, Magasa discusses his career, the economics of producing theatre in Malawi, and his current work to bring a combination of traditional and Afro contemporary dance to schoolchildren in Malawi.

event poster for reflecting forward session two: Art, Race & Dialogue.
Animating Democracy Session Two
Video

Animating Democracy Session Two

Art, Race, and Dialogue

Thursday 13 October 2022
United States

Art2Action and Animating Democracy presented Art, Race, and Dialogue, the second event in the series Animating Democracy: REFLECTING FORWARD, livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Thursday 13 October 2022 at 1 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 3 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 4 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4).

Thirteen people holding a giant check and posing for a picture.
Theatre Education as a Transformative Tool in Southwestern Nigeria
Essay

Theatre Education as a Transformative Tool in Southwestern Nigeria

20 September 2022

Theatre artist Kofoworola Owokotomo describes her experience teaching theatre to students at the Concord School in Ibadan and advocates for more funding of arts education in Nigerian schools.

Actors working together during rehearsal.
Making Our Own Table: Defining Black Intimacy Practice
Essay

Making Our Own Table: Defining Black Intimacy Practice

A Conversation with Kaja Dunn

25 August 2022

Ann James interviews Kaja Dunn, who works both as an intimacy specialist and a scholar of race and choreography, about her decade-long path through the intimacy industry. They discuss the way to bring intimacy professionals into a production process, the importance of citing Black women’s contributions to the field, and the need diversify who is telling stories on our stages.

Daughters of Lorraine Podcast teaser.
I Write What Comes Up in My Body: Robbie McCauley's Theatre
Podcast

I Write What Comes Up in My Body: Robbie McCauley's Theatre

24 August 2022

In this episode, Jordan Ealey and Leticia Ridley look at the life and legacy of playwright Robbie McCauley, who recently passed away. They discuss her work as a pioneer of solo performance as a Black woman and how she impacted the world of Black feminist theatre.

Daughters of Lorraine Podcast teaser.
Put Some Respect on Black Theatre with Lisa B. Thompson
Podcast

Put Some Respect on Black Theatre with Lisa B. Thompson

16 August 2022

In this episode, Jordan Ealey and Leticia Ridley interview artist/scholar Lisa B. Thompson. They discuss navigating life as a Black feminist artist/scholar, putting some respect on Black theatre, and why Black theatre is an integral part of Black Studies.

Daughters of Lorraine Podcast teaser.
Writing Detroit: Dominique Morisseau’s Practice of the Possible
Podcast

Writing Detroit: Dominique Morisseau’s Practice of the Possible

10 August 2022

Jordan Ealey and Leticia Ridley interview award-winning and acclaimed playwright Dominique Morisseau about her recent Broadway productions of Ain’t Too Proud: The Life and Times of The Temptations and Skeleton Crew; the future of Detroit theatre and performance; and reckoning with American history. Ealey and Ridley discuss Morisseau’s practice of reparative creativity and the ability for theatre to serve as a rehearsal for true change.

A Black performer wearing patterned headband and yellow shirt on stage
No Longer Your “Token Black Bitch”
Essay

No Longer Your “Token Black Bitch”

8 August 2022

Theatremaker Latrice Richardson addresses the ongoing misogynoir in storytelling by detailing one of her past experiences and advocates for better representation of Black women in theatre.

Daughters of Lorraine Podcast teaser.
Staging Reproductive Freedom in Black Feminist Theatre
Podcast

Staging Reproductive Freedom in Black Feminist Theatre

3 August 2022

This episode is inspired by recent and current events regarding Roe v. Wade and their potential impact on birthing people. We think about the representation of reproductive justice (things such as abortion, contraception, and anything regarding decisions to birth or plan a family) especially from Black women playwrights. We discuss plays such as They That Sit in Darkness by Mary Burrill, Rachel by Angelina Weld Grimke, Come Down Burning by Kia Corthron, In the Blood by Suzan-Lori Parks, and Abortion Road Trip by Rachel Lynett.

event poster for athe 2022.
Writing Detroit
Video

Writing Detroit

Dominique Morisseau’s Practice of the Possible

Friday 29 July 2022
United States

The Association for Theatre in Higher Education (ATHE) presented the conversation Writing Detroit: Dominique Morisseau’s Practice of the Possible livestreaming on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network on Friday 29 July 2022 at 8 a.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 10 a.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 11 a.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4).

Black Women Got Something to Say: A Conversation with Pearl Cleage
Podcast

Black Women Got Something to Say: A Conversation with Pearl Cleage

27 July 2022

In this episode, Jordan and Leticia interview playwright Pearl Cleage. They discuss the way she has navigated her career as a Black feminist/womanist playwright often working in Black spaces; how she found her home in Atlanta, Georgia; and her most recent play, Angry, Raucous, and Shamelessly Gorgeous.

A woman in a traditional garb stands outside facing an audience.
“The Ills We Do, Their Ills Instruct Us So”: Indigenous Futurism at the South Dakota Shakespeare Festival
Essay

“The Ills We Do, Their Ills Instruct Us So”: Indigenous Futurism at the South Dakota Shakespeare Festival

25 July 2022

Robert Hubbard discusses the South Dakota Shakespeare Festival production of Othello, which Tara Moses adapted and directed through an Indigenous Futurist lens. The resulting production employed its Shakespearean source text to model solidarity between Tribal Sovereignty and Black Liberation movements.

Daughter of Lorraine teaser image
When and Where We Enter: Black Feminist Theatre
Podcast

When and Where We Enter: Black Feminist Theatre

20 July 2022

In this episode, Leticia and Jordan finally explain what they mean when they say Black feminism, especially in theatre and performance. They engage Lisa M. Anderson’s tenets of Black feminist drama, alongside other contemporary scholars and artists expansion of Black feminist theatre. They discuss Black feminist theory, black feminist practice in creative work, and black feminist theatre theory.

Daughters of Lorraine - Fat Ham
A Soft Place To Land: James Ijames' Fat Ham
Podcast

A Soft Place To Land: James Ijames' Fat Ham

13 July 2022

This episode focuses on the 2022 Pulitzer Prize for Drama winner, Fat Ham by James Ijames. Leticia and Jordan discuss the recent production at the Public Theater, its conversation and diversion from Shakespeare, representations of Black queerness, and what it means to be soft as a black person.

Daughters of Lorraine Podcast teaser.
Working Her Own Tune: Revisiting the Life, Legacy, and Work of Micki Grant
Podcast

Working Her Own Tune: Revisiting the Life, Legacy, and Work of Micki Grant

6 July 2022

This episode honors the life and work of composer, writer, and performer Micki Grant, who passed away in August 2021. Grant was the first Black woman to write and compose a musical that made it to Broadway, and she is also the subject of Jordan's dissertation.

Creating a Space for Black Theatre Audiences
Podcast

Creating a Space for Black Theatre Audiences

With Addae Moon

29 June 2022

This episode is an interview with Addae Moon, the associate artistic director at Theatrical Outfit in Atlanta, Georgia. We discuss his journey as a theatre artist; his playwright development lab, Hush Harbor Lab; and his own artistry and creativity.

Singin' a Black Girl's Song- Ntozake Shange and for colored girls who have considered suicide / when the rainbow is enuf
Podcast

Singin' a Black Girl's Song- Ntozake Shange and for colored girls who have considered suicide / when the rainbow is enuf

22 June 2022

This episode explores the recent revival of Ntozake Shange’s for colored girls who have considered suicide / when the rainbow is enuf, directed and choreographed by Camille A. Brown. Hosts Leticia Ridley and Jordan Ealey contextualize the production, its ongoing relevance and legacy, and its resonance in Black feminist theatre, dance, and performance.

2022 TCG Conference in Pittsburgh event poster.
2022 TCG National Conference: Pittsburgh
Video

2022 TCG National Conference: Pittsburgh

Redefining Our Art. Transforming Our Practices. Tending to Our People.

Thursday 16 June to Saturday 18 June 2022
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States

Theatre Communications Group (TCG) presented the 2022 TCG National Conference: Pittsburgh livestreaming on the commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network from Thursday 16 June to Saturday 18 June 2022.

event poster for deaf woke with tanesha and tanya ausby.
Livestreaming a Conversation: #DeafWoke with Tanya and Tanesha Ausby
Video

Livestreaming a Conversation: #DeafWoke with Tanya and Tanesha Ausby

#DeafWoke is a Virtual Consciousness-raising, Engaging Online Talk Show, Led by Black and Native American Deaf Host Mr. Antoine Hunter PurpleFireCrow

Tuesday 14 June 2022
United States

Antoine Hunter presents #DeafWoke with Tanya and Tanesha Ausby livestreaming on the commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv Tuesday 14 June 2022 at 5 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 7 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 8 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4).

#DeafWoke with John Autry II
Video

#DeafWoke with John Autry II

#DeafWoke is a Virtual Consciousness-raising, Engaging Online Talk Show, Led by Black and Native American Deaf Host Mr. Antoine Hunter Purple Fire Crow

Friday 20 May 2022
United States

Antoine Hunter presents #DeafWoke with John Autry II livestreaming on the commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv Friday 20 May 2022 at 5 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 7 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 8 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4).

Climate Emergency Series Ending
The Corpo Quebrada and Ecopoetics of the Commons / O Corpo Quebrada e as Ecopoéticas dos Comuns
Essay

The Corpo Quebrada and Ecopoetics of the Commons / O Corpo Quebrada e as Ecopoéticas dos Comuns

22 April 2022

Gabriel Augusto Liparini Queiroz sits down with Adilson Siqueira, Aneliza Rodrigues Prado, and Patrick Veniali da Silva to discuss their work at the Laboratory of Ecopoetics (ECOLAB) at the Federal University of São João del-Rei. They share their research on the concept of the corpo quebrada—literally the “bent body”—which responds to ecological crisis by embodying resilience and flexibility.

Four people kneeling around bowls of water.
Teatro Preto do Candomblé’: The Art of Eco-Reconnection
Essay

Teatro Preto do Candomblé’: The Art of Eco-Reconnection

21 April 2022

Onisajé shares the creative process of Teatro Preto do Candomblé, which trains actors using the rituals and liturgy of Candomblé as a method of actor training. Through immersion in this African diasporic religion, Teatro Preto do Candomblé’s methods center reciprocal relationships with the environment and activate individuals’ connection to their Blackness.

Event poster for deaf woke with Kimberly Snipe.
Livestreaming a Conversation: #DeafWoke with Kimberly Snipe
Video

Livestreaming a Conversation: #DeafWoke with Kimberly Snipe

#DeafWoke is a Virtual Consciousness-raising, Engaging Online Talk Show, Led by Black and Native American Deaf Host Mr. Antoine Hunter PurpleFireCrow

Saturday 16 April 2022
United States

Antoine Hunter presents #DeafWoke with Kimberly Snipe livestreaming on the commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv Saturday 16 April 2022 at 10 a.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC -7) / 12 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC -5) / 1 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC -4).