This Black History Month, as we celebrate our heroes and sheroes and pay tribute to some of the great Black artists from the past who have helped shape our current artistic landscape, it is also an ideal time to have an eye toward the future and uplift the next generation of young artists who are blazing trails today.
The history of African American theatre and performance has been tied to the social and cultural circumstances of the Black existence. Because of the particular historical conditions of Black life, the representation of African Americans onstage and in production has contained profound political, social, and cultural meanings and impacts, very much as it does today.
This month, we have an opportunity to celebrate Black theatremakers and the many, often unsung contributions they’ve made to the field—especially the contributions of Black women, which often receive even less of the recognition they are due.
The following is a list of 10 young Black women+ artists who are doing amazing work in this space and are bridging generational gaps through learning, teaching, and uplifting those of the African diaspora and offering excellence to the theatre.
These up-and-comers are ones to have on your radar as they continue to make Black Herstory through their art.
Regina Victor (they/pharaoh)
Artistic director, Sideshow Theatre
Foundation director, Stage Directors and Choreographers Workshop Foundation
Dionna Michelle Daniel (Zola Dee)
Artistic associate, Pasadena Playhouse
Donya K. Washington
Repertory producer, Oregon Shakespeare Festival
BOLD Artistic Director Fellow, Alliance Theatre
Lady Dane Figueroa Edidi
Theatremaker, writer, performer, trans advocate
Associate artistic director, Arizona Theater Company
Shop operations manager, Oregon Shakespeare Festival
SDCF Lloyd Richards New Futures Resident
Director of arts engagement, La Jolla Playhouse
Nataki Garrett (she/hers) is the artistic director of Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
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