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Crossroads Theatre Company presents Genesis Festival 2023 of New Voices and New Plays


originally published: 03/22/2023

Crossroads Theatre Company presents Genesis Festival 2023 of New Voices and New Plays

(NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ) -- Crossroads Theatre Company presents Genesis Festival 2023 of New Voices and New Plays from April 19-23, 2023 at the New Brunswick Performing Arts Center. The 2023 Genesis Festival features new works for the stage from some of the world's most exciting writers, young and emerging artists, as well as well-known established writers. This is an interactive experience that invites conversation and audience feedback writers after each reading.

The nationally acclaimed Genesis Festival, now in its 28th year, will be curated by dramaturgical master, Sydné Mahone.

The Gospel Woman: A Rehearsal Drama with Music by Tylie Shider; Musical Director, Aaron Marcellus. A one-hour excerpt. Set in Plainfield, New Jersey, 1972. Soon, Orpah, the award-winning soul singer, will arrive to record her live gospel album in the church. In the interim, there is a boycott by the congregation, the threat of a foreclosure, and a sister feud over whose voice is on the demo that launched her career. Can this family of preachers and singers save their legacy?

And Then Grief Learned the Jig: A Poetic Performance by Jamie Goodwin. A one-hour excerpt. A young Black woman, fresh out of college, navigates her new world as an artist and tries to make sense of her struggle for freedom in body, mind, and spirit. This play is an act of resistance, and a call for beauty. With guest artist, poet/performer Oshun.

In the Gray by Antu Yacob; Directed by Celestine Rae. A one-hour excerpt. Sometimes quirky, elegant, hot, and lukewarm, Antu has always had trouble fitting into a box. Her solo show In The Gray shares a funny and raw perspective on her experiences as an Oromo Ethiopian-born, U.S. raised woman, actor, daughter, mother and survivor.


Bearden and Billie by Kathleen McGhee-Anderson. A one-hour excerpt. A love story about the hidden affair between Romare Bearden, one of the most celebrated artists of the twentieth century, with brilliant dancer, actor and director, Billie Allen. The intimate, two-character play draws from never before seen works of art, poetic outpourings and passionate love letters, revealing the many facets of Bearden’s inner life and creative process. It ponders the complications and challenges of loving, making art, and being human.

The Role of the Artist in Telling Our History featuring selected Genesis Festival writers, Ari Laura Kreith, and moderator Ricardo Khan. A Crossroads Collaboration with Luna Stage. A one-hour excerpt. Playwrights share and discuss their short works inspired by the historic James Howe House in Montclair, New Jersey.

Excerpts from: “The Ground Upon Which We Stand” conceived by Ari Laura Kreith, Artistic Director, Luna Stage. This multi-writer, site-specific project explores the history and impact of The James Howe House from 1780 to present day. The Howe House is the first property in the Township of Montclair to be owned by an African American and formerly enslaved person and has been the site of much current controversy.  Supported in part by the Suzzanne Douglas Memorial Commissioning Fund.

The festival takes place Wednesday, April 19 at 7:00pm; Thursday, April 20 at 7:00pm; Friday, April 21 at 7:00pm; Saturday, April 22 at 7:00pm; and Sunday, April 23 at 3:00pm.  Tickets are available for purchase online. Join Crossroads for this celebration of creativity and community, and witness the birth of groundbreaking productions that will shape the future of theatre. Book your tickets now and don't miss out on this incredible opportunity.

Crossroads Theatre Company, recipient of the 1999 Tony Award® for Outstanding Regional Theatre in the United States, is the nation's premiere African American theater. The American Theatre Critics Association together with the American Theatre Wing and the League of Regional Theatres and Producers presented the prestigious Tony Award® to Crossroads in recognition of its 22-year history of artistic accomplishment and excellence. Crossroads is the first African American theater to receive this honor in the 33-year history of this special award category.

Crossroads continues to lead the nation with its commitment to literary works that examine the African American experience so that it may be understood and appreciated by all people. Crossroads' recent Tony Award® and 20th Anniversary celebration are both indicative of the perseverance and vision of those who continue to support the theater. Both are of great significance, not only to the immediate Crossroads family of staff, subscribers and patrons, but also to the City of New Brunswick, the State of New Jersey, the nation and the legacy of Black theater itself. When co-founders Ricardo Khan and L. Kenneth Richardson envisioned a space where, as actors, the two young men could work on substantive, non-stereotypical roles, little did they realize that their vision would grow into the major institution that it is today.




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Happy Together 2023

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Jessica Kirson

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