As a part of our “Dans le avant-garde” series, “Funnyhouse of a Negro” by Adrienne Kennedy, directed by Zaylin Yates, is a poetic and symbolic investigation into one woman’s mind before her death. Sarah has created four different personas as a way to grapple with her own self-hatred: Queen Victoria, the Duchess of Hapsburg, Jesus, and Patrice Lumumba. With these four characters at her side, Sarah tries to make sense of her conception (from rape), her life without her parents, and the creeping insanity that she feels all around her.
Runtime: Approximately 1hr. 10mins. (No intermission)
Following the show, on October 23, in partnership with South Florida Afro Pride, we will host “Between Two Worlds,” a symposium on colorism and self-identity. This symposium will focus on mental and emotional healing for biracial men and women. Additionally, tackling topics on how the community can seek emotional healing. Learning tools to practice self-love and embracing all the things that define their humanity. Mental illness, self-hate, and the need to be socially accepted are issues that currently plague the Black and BIPOC communities. Avoiding these conversations increases the number of suicide attempts we experience in Miami Dade County. This symposium will feature a panel of special guests and focus on mental and emotional healing for black/brown men and women. Mental illness, self-hate, and the need to be socially accepted are issues that currently plague the black community, and it is time to have a conversation. Admission to the symposium will be free. If you plan to only attend the symposium, you will be admitted once the performance concludes. The Symposium will also be streamed online via Zoom and Facebook Live.
Where: Little Haiti Cultural Center (212 NE 59th Ter, Miami, FL 33137)
“Funnyhouse of a Negro” is presented by arrangement with Concord Theatricals on behalf of Samuel French, Inc. www.concordtheatricals.com”
Adrienne Kennedy first gained attention with Funnyhouse of a Negro, which was produced off-Broadway in 1964. Kennedy’s plays usually do not rely on straightforward narratives, but rather utilize symbolism and dreamlike conditions to convey messages about racism, sexism, colonialism and other destructive forces. They have also incorporated her own personal history and featured Black women as protagonists. In November 2021, it was announced that Kennedy’s 1990 play Ohio State Murders would appear on Broadway, which would be her Broadway debut.
Adrienne Kennedy has earned a place as one of contemporary America’s most renowned and admired African American authors, lecturers, and playwrights. Kennedy was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on September 13, 1931 to Cornell Wallace and Etta (Haugabook) Hawkins. Kennedy spent her childhood in Cleveland, Ohio, where she attended public schools. She graduated from Ohio State University with a B.A in Education in 1953. In May of that same year she wed Joseph C. Kennedy with whom she had two children. After the birth of her oldest son, Kennedy continued to pursue her education by attending Columbia University (1954-56), the American Theatre Wing, the New School of Social Research, and Circle in the Square Theatre School. Kennedy also participated in Edward Albee’s Theatre Workshop, in New York City.
As a proud Florida A&M University graduate born and raised in Tampa, FL, Jessica Raquel believes in celebrating/honoring the many layers of Afro narrative through shape shifting while storytelling. Whether that celebration consists of poetic nuance, some form of musicality (Theta Nu Chapter of Sigma Alpha Iota) or the cultivation of a simple creative safe space such as Brown Suga Said It (her podcast) it is always intentional. Performing (both freely and competitively) on a national scale as a Professional Spoken Word Artist in D.C, Atlanta, Chicago, San Francisco, Jacksonville, Miami etc and on the original lineup/cast of shows such as “Speak Up Poetry Series”.
Raquel hasn’t dismissed her poetic roots in pursuit of finding the “human” within the script. Some of Raquel’s rhythm and rhyme can be felt in her roles in “From the Mississippi Delta” in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival or as a company actor in the 2021 Season of Black Girls Luv the Bard company (in partnership with Play On Shakespeare).
Raquel “creates/speaks because it’s medicine”.
Jamall Lynch was born in Boynton Beach, FL, but raised in Miami Gardens, FL. Jamall graduated class of 2021 from Dr. Michael M. Krop Sr. High School under the direction of Jamel Booth. Jamall also received training from New World School of the Arts. Jamall currently attends Broward College pursuing his Associate of Arts and will soon transfer to Florida A&M University to obtain his Bachelor of Arts degree. Jamall was first exposed to theatre in his role as Timon in “The Lion King Jr.” at Norland Middle School, under the direction of Tanisha Cidel. Being in that production kick started his passion which led to a strong 8 years of theatre work throughout South Florida. Jamall has portrayed characters such as C.C. White in “Dreamgirls”, Alexander Hamilton in “Hamilton: An American Musical”, and Benny in “In the Heights”. Jamall is excited to join the cast of Brévo Theatre’s production.
Naomi Ray-Barnett is a young actor and musical theatre performer from Miami, Florida. Starting her theatre training at the age of 11, she has gone on to work with phenomenal artists and teachers such as Jamel Booth, Director of Theatre at Dr. Michael Krop Senior High, Tanisha Cidel, Artistic Director of Evolutionary Arts Life, and award-winning Playwright, Tarrell Alvin McCraney. Naomi recently gained her first professional credit in a 3-month local tour with Fantasy Theatre Factory in their brand-new musical, “Heroes in My House: A Magical Journey through Black History”. When not on the stage, you can find Naomi brainstorming her next at home photoshoot, full on cosplaying or styling outfits for her favorite fictional characters and putting in the work to start her own YouTube channel. To put it simply, Naomi is ready to take on the world but will never be unwilling to learn something new!
Omari White is a student in his third year at Florida A&M University, studying Theatre Performance. He is from none-other than Miami, FL. He has appeared in A Cool Drink a Water (Walt), Dreamgirls: in Concert (Curtis), Sweet Mama Stringbean (Earl Dancer), and The Waiting Room (Swing). He was also with Brévo Theatre this summer in their production “Brévo for Broadway!” showcasing young talent. Additionally, he has traveled as a member of The FAMU Connection, recruiting youth looking to attend a university. Omari gives thanks to Jazmin Jones-Oliver, Jamel Booth, and Keith Oliver for nurturing his love for the art of theatre and being phenomenal mentors in the past and for years to come.
Onyekachi Anyagaligbo is a senior at Michael Krop Senior High, a part of the S.T.A.R Academy program with a concentration in the Theatre magnet. Onyi got her start at the Norland Middle School in Miami where she trained intensively under the tutelage of her mentors, Tanisha Cidel, Khadijah Rolle, and Jamel Booth. Her credits include Dreamgirls (Ensemble), Fun & Fancy Free by Jamel Booth (Various roles), Seussical (Sour Kangaroo), Chicago (Velma Kelly), and The Little Mermaid (Ursula). She thanks all of her mentors as well as, Brianne Cidel, Joshua Reaves, and Eddie Brown.
Delilah is the founder of Black Girl’s Healing House – a holistic wellness community exclusively for 64.k Black women around the world. She is a University of Alabama graduate with a degree in Apparel and Textile design.
Delilah came into community building in 2018 after so many experiences with not feeling seen in the wellness industry. Delilah created Black Girl’s Healing House to create more inclusivity, and they grew rapidly from 200 members to 60k+ within 4 years.
In 2021 Black Girl’s Healing House was accepted into Meta’s Community Accelerator program! Since then, they’ve been featured in media such as Essence, Upworthy, Popsugar, Fitbit and AfroTech.
Black Girl’s Healing House helps bridge the gap between Black women and wellness by connecting our community to some of the most sought after Black female healers across the globe and provide ethically sourced spiritual self-care tools. Their vision is to create safe spaces for Black women to be honored and seen online and in person.
Kabir Amari is a nonbinary educator, facilitator, and curriculum creator who uses they/them pronouns. Currently, they serve as the Director of the Regional Prism (LGBTQIA2S+) Alliances for Teach For America. Their areas of specialization include facilitating conversations and building courses which allow participants to examine the experiences of students who have been marginalized by various and intersecting systems of oppression. Kabir Amari has trained both pre-K-12 and post-secondary educators across the country about the importance of approaching queer and trans equity through an intersectional lens. They’ve spent a decade providing guidance, mentorship, and leadership opportunities for queer and trans youth in South Florida and beyond. Kabir Amari was recently selected as one of South Florida Gay News’ “Out 50”, a distinguished list recognizing openly LGBTQ individuals who make an impact in South Florida. Kabir Amari is also a recipient of the Bishop S.F. Makalani-Mahee award for Trans Equality for their work supporting transgender youth and was a finalist for GLSEN’s Educator of the Year award in 2020. Kabir Amari believes that all educators have a role in liberating students.