Jan 19-29: Atlantic Theater Company’s AFRICAN CARIBBEAN MIXFEST to Feature Works by France-Luce Benson, Guadalís Del Carmen, Kwame Kwei-Armah, Jasmine Lee-Jones, Whitney White, Julissa Contreras, Dane Figueroa Edidi, Patrice Johnson Chevannes and Jeff Augustin

Kwame Kwei-Armah. Photo by Lia Chang

Atlantic Theater Company will present African Caribbean MixFest, a series of free readings co-produced by playwright Guadalís Del Carmen and playwright, director, and Artistic Director of the Young Vic Kwame Kwei Armah, that will run virtually Tuesday, January 19 th through Friday, January 29th.

This winter, Atlantic will be presenting readings of full-length plays by for this year’s African Caribbean MixFest.

Co-producer Guadalís Del Carmen says, “Producing MixFest this year brings me so much joy! I think of Aimee Cesar and Errol John and their efforts to shine a light on Caribbean stories, and I appreciate Atlantic Theater Company for carving out a space to continue that work. Although we’ve all had to adapt to life on Zoom as theater artists, these dynamic plays do not lose their shine. It’s also been important for us to curate a conversation around issues that directly affect the Caribbean, from sex tourism to environmental catastrophes. In a time of global reckoning around colonization, racism and anti-Blackness, I hope folks continue the conversations that these plays and panels will ultimately inspire.”

Kwame Kwei -Armah added, “I’ve long been a profound fan of the MixFest series, and so when asked to help facilitate the articulation of Black Caribbean writers to the Atlantic Theater’s wonderful audience, I was elated. The Caribbean voice in America is not one that is often articulated, and so I simply couldn’t let this wonderful opportunity pass me by.”

Artistic Director Neil Pepe adds, “All of us at Atlantic are thrilled to welcome and celebrate this extraordinary group of artists. And we are so grateful to partner with our remarkable friends Kwame Kwei -Armah and Guadalís Del Carmen to produce this festival.”

AFRICAN CARIBBEAN MIXFEST and all of Atlantic’s new play and musical development activities are made possible by leadership support from the Howard Gilman Foundation and The Tow Foundation, with additional funding from the Axe-Houghton Foundation, the Barbara Bell Cumming Charitable Trust, The Max and Victoria Dreyfus Foundation, the National Alliance for Musical Theatre, and the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation.

Admission is free, with a suggested donation. Reservations are required. Click here to RSVP.

MEET THE WRITERS

Tuesday, January 19 |6 PM

African Caribbean MixFest will kick off with a group panel moderated by Alisha Espinosa . Learn more about the writers in the festival, their creative process and what inspires their work.

LET THERE BE LOVE

written by Kwame Kwei-Armah

Thursday, January 21 | 6 PM

Let There Be Love tells the story of Alfred, a cantankerous and aging West Indian immigrant living in London, who has managed to alienate all those around him-including his equally headstrong daughter, with whom he rarely sees eye to eye. When an idealistic young Polish caregiver, new to the country, is assigned to look after him, he experiences a powerful reckoning with his past.

DOUBLE BILL

ABDUCTION by Whitney White and

I USED TO LOVE H.E.R. written and performed by Jasmine Lee-Jones, directed by Dominique Rider

Friday, January 22 | 6PM

A double bill of new work by two thrilling writers from either side of the Atlantic. In her solo piece, Evening Standard Award winner Jasmine Lee Jones explores the language of love from 1476 to now. Obie and Lily Award-winning Whitney White’s two-hander is set in a holding room of a space ship and the conversations inside start to feel frighteningly familiar.

SHORT PLAYS

by Jeff Augustin, Julissa Contreras, Dane Figueroa Edidi, and Patrice Johnson Chevannes

directed by Danielle A. Drakes

Tuesday, January 26 | 6 PM

Readings of three commissioned short plays by Julissa Contreras, Dane Figueroa Edidi and Patrice Johnson Chevannes and a short play by Jeff Augustin .

WHO IS THE CARIBBEAN IN AMERICA TODAY?

A Panel Moderated by Alisha Espinosa

Wednesday, January 27 | 6 PM

Hear from experts as they address this question through the lens of Caribbean history and the critical issues facing the African Caribbean community today, such as sex tourism, the effects of general tourism, and environmental concerns. Our panel of thinkers will also explore matters of leadership and the role of art in Caribbean culture.

TIGRESS OF SAN DOMINGUE

by France- Luce Benson

directed by Awoye Timpo

Thursday, January 28 | 6 PM

Part II of Benson’s Haitian Revolution trilogy Deux Femmes on the Edge de la Revolution, Tigress of San Domingue continues the journey of Cécile, an enslaved African healer turned rebel soldier, and Valentine, a French expat caught between two worlds. As Toussaint L’Ouverture and Jean-Jacques Dessalines continue the fight for freedom and equality, Cécile, rises up the military ranks. Driven by a dangerous combination of trauma and ambition, she must choose between her obligation to family, and their allegiance to the new nation rising from the ashes.

This reading was generously underwritten by Diane M. Miller.

A SHERO’S JOURNEY OR WHAT ANACAONA AND YEMAYÁ TAUGHT ME

by Guadalís Del Carmen

directed by Awoye Timpo

Friday, January 29 | 6 PM

Zoila has had her entire life planned and laid out for her by her family, and society. She finds herself at a crossroads when she falls in love with a friend from the past. When tragedy hits, she decides to risk it all. Leaving everything behind, she meets two ancestral figures and together they embark on a journey that makes Zoila question everything she was ever taught.

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