Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

ALL MY CHILDREN Alum Debbi Morgan and Darnell Williams to Co-Chair the 2015 National Black Theatre Festival, August 3-8

Debbi Morgan and Darnell Williams, who portrayed the iconic couple “Angie and Jesse” on the long running daytime television series “All My Children,” will serve as Celebrity Co-Chairs for the 2015 National Black Theatre Festival, August 3-8 in Winston-Salem, NC.

Highlights include the Star Studded Opening Night Celebrity Gala, Theatre Productions, Readers’ Theatre of New Works/Plays, Theatre Workshops, International Colloquium (presented by NBTF, Winston-Salem State University and the Black Theatre Newtork), the Youth/Celebrity Project and Teen TeenTastic, films, seminars, a teen poetry slam and the International Vendor’s Market which features vendors and crafts from every corner of the globe and live entertainment.

Newly minted 2015 National Black Theatre Festival co-chairs Darnell Williams and Debbi Morgan during a press conference in Winston-Salem, NC, on March 9, 2015. Photo courtesy of the National Black Theatre Festival

Newly minted 2015 National Black Theatre Festival co-chairs Darnell Williams and Debbi Morgan during a press conference in Winston-Salem, NC, on March 9, 2015. Photo courtesy of the National Black Theatre Festival

journalnews.com:‘All My Children’ stars to co-chair National Black Theatre Festival

Theatre Festival Play Schedule – A schedule of plays and events can be obtained by contacting the NBTF for a printed schedule or going online to NBTF.org. The schedule will include the play’s title, date, time, location and the play number. Some plays are performed several times during the week, so knowing the play number is very important.

Sylvia Sprinkle Hamlin during a press conference for the 2015 National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, NC, on March 9, 2015. Photo courtesy of the National Black Theatre Festival

Sylvia Sprinkle Hamlin during a press conference for the 2015 National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, NC, on March 9, 2015. Photo courtesy of the National Black Theatre Festival

Purchasing Tickets – Advance tickets may be purchased for the 2015 festival by calling the Festival box office at (336) 723-7907. These tickets will be mailed up to two weeks prior to the festival or picked up at the M.C. Benton Convention Center.

On Thursday, August 6, 2015, the Celebration of Life reception saluting the late theatre icon Garland Lee Thompson, Sr. will be at The Sawtooth Art Gallery, The Sawtooth School for Visual Arts, 251 North Spruce Street, Winston-Salem, NC 27101.

The late Garland Lee Thompson, Sr. at The Festival's opening night gala on July 29, 2013. Born on February 14, 1938 in Muskogee, Oklahoma, Garland Lee Thompson, Sr., passed away quickly and peacefully on November 18, 2014. He was 76 years old. Photo by Lia Chang

The late Garland Lee Thompson, Sr. at The Festival’s opening night gala on July 29, 2013. Born on February 14, 1938 in Muskogee, Oklahoma, Garland Lee Thompson, Sr., passed away quickly and peacefully on November 18, 2014. He was 76 years old. Photo by Lia Chang

Live Jazz and African/Native American Drummers and more; complimentary food and wine will be served. To join the presenting committee, email your full name to ndove@hotmail.com or call 678-739-6674.

Feb. 14: Remembering Garland Lee Thompson, Sr. with a Memorial at St. James Presbyterian Church; Presentation-Reception at Theater for the New City
Photos: Phyllis Yvonne Stickney, Micki Grant, Woodie King Jr., Voza Rivers, Talvin Wilks, Garland Thompson Jr., Charles Turner, Jamal Joseph, Debra Ann Byrd and More at harlem is…Theater
Remembering Garland Lee Thompson, Sr. (1938-2014); Memorial Set for February 14, 2015

If you are interested in being one of the 1,500 volunteers for the National Black Theatre Festival, download a volunteer application from www.NBTF.org or call (336) 723-2266.

The NBTF official hotels are:

Marriott Twin City Quarter Embassy Suites
425 N. Cherry Street 460 N. Cherry Street
Winston-Salem, NC 27101 Winston-Salem, NC 27101
336/725-3500 – 877/ 888-9762 336/724-3400 – 800/362-2779
www.marriott.com http://www.embassysuites.com

Visit www.NBTF.org for other festival hotels.

Festival History
Founded in Winston-Salem by the late Larry Leon Hamlin in 1989 and hosted by the North Carolina Black Repertory Company (NCBRC), NBTF is a biennial event with a purpose of uniting black theatre companies from around the world and ensuring the presence of this phenomenal genre. Mr. Leon Hamlin described the experience as “MARVTASTIC,” a combination of marvelous and fantastic! With the support of Dr. Maya Angelou, who served as the Festival’s first Chairperson, the National Black Theatre Festival was born. The ’89 Festival offered 30 performances by 17 of America’s best professional black theatre companies. It attracted national and international media coverage. According to The New York Times, “The 1989 National Black Theatre Festival was one of the most historic and culturally significant events in the history of black theatre and American theatre in general.” Over 10,000 people attended. Today that number reaches well over 65,000 attendees.

Ten years prior to starting the National Black Theatre Festival, Larry Leon Hamlin founded another black theater movement in Winston-Salem that is still present today. The North Carolina Black Repertory Company is the state’s first professional Black theater company. NCBRC is committed to introducing diverse audiences to Black classics, the development and production of new works, improving artistic quality, and sustaining Black theatre internationally. NCBRC was founded with the purpose of providing theatre professionals the opportunity to earn a living through their craft.

NCBRC presents three to four productions annually featuring members of its ensemble or through collaborations with other theatre companies from around the country. The annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Celebration and the holiday presentation of Langston Hughes’ Black Nativity have become two of the Company’s staples. The critically acclaimed NCBRC production, Mahalia, Queen of Gospel (written and directed by Mabel Robinson, the company’s Artistic Director) was a National Black Theatre Festival showcase performance.

National Black Theatre Festival Articles
journalnews.com:‘All My Children’ stars to co-chair National Black Theatre Festival
Photos: National Black Theatre Festival 2013; NBTF runs August 3-8, 2015 and will include Act III – A Celebration of Life Reception saluting the late theatre icon Garland Lee Thompson, Sr.
Cheryl L. Davis’ Maid’s Door Sweeps AUDELCOs with 7 Wins; Complete List of 2014 AUDELCO Recipients
Chapman Roberts, Loretta Abbott, André De Shields, David Greer, Norm Lewis, Cherine Anderson, Lawrence Evans, Colby Christina & Nicholas A. Jenkins to Receive Special AUDELCO Awards on Nov. 17; 2014 AUDELCO Nominees Announced
2014 AUDELCO Nominations Announced; Ceremony at Peter Jay Sharp Theatre at Symphony Space on November 17
National Black Theatre Festival Photos: Backstage with André De Shields, Marie Thomas, Erin Cherry, Sean Phillips and Morocco Omari in Knock Me A Kiss
Hal Williams, S. Epatha Merkerson, Ben Guillory, Oz Scott, Jonathan McCrory and Starletta DuPois among 2013 National Black Theatre Festival® Honorees
Two Films by Fay Hauser-Price Screen during the National Black Theatre Festival at the Central Library in Winston-Salem on July 31, 2013
Tonya Pinkins, Dorien Wilson, Pauletta Pearson Washington, Roscoe Orman, Rain Pryor, André De Shields, Debbi Morgan, Chester Gregory, Tommy Ford and More Set for National Black Theatre Festival® in Winston-Salem, NC
Photos: Charles Smith’s Knock Me A Kiss Starring André De Shields Featured in Encore Performances at The National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, NC, July 30-August 1, 2013
The Chronicle Features Lorey Hayes’ Power Play
Febone1960.net Review: Power Play Powerful & Suspenseful
A Summer in Bangkok for Thom Sesma, Star of Signature’s Miss Saigon
Celebrity Actress, Pauletta Pearson Washington returns home to North Carolina starring at 2013 National Black Theatre festival with Roscoe Orman (“Sesame Street,” Willie Dynamite) and all star cast in Lorey Hayes’ award-winning “Power Play”, a play about Politics, Passion and The Power of God
Video: Power Play’s Lorey Hayes and Lia Chang on The Carmen Mathis Show

cropped-lia-chang_photo-by-carlos-flores-3.jpgLia Chang is an actor, a performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. Lia starred as Carole Barbara in Lorey Hayes’ Power Play at the 2013 National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., with Pauletta Pearson Washington, Roscoe Orman, and made her jazz vocalist debut in Rome Neal’s Banana Puddin’ Jazz “LADY” at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in New York. She is profiled in Jade Magazine.

Other Articles by Lia Chang:
Photos: Hudson Yang, Randall Park, Eddie Huang, Richard Lui, Lori Tan Chinn and More at #FreshOffTheBoat Viewing Party at The Circle NYC
Signature Theatre Company’s Founding Artistic Director James Houghton To Step Down After 2015-16 25th Anniversary Season
Stephen Adly Guirgis’s BETWEEN RIVERSIDE AND CRAZY Starring Stephen McKinley Henderson, Victor Almanzar, Elizabeth Canavan, Rosal Colón, Liza Colón-Zayas, Michael Rispoli and Ron Cephas Jones, has performances through March 22 at Second Stage Theatre
Photos: “Swimming Awkward Moment,” the newest works by painter Arlan Huang at Trestle Gallery through March 27
MTC Run of World Premiere of The World of Extreme Happiness by Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig, starring Jennifer Lim, Francis Jue, Telly Leung, Jo Mei, James Saito and Sue Jin Song has performances through March 29
Photos: Michael Mayer Helmed BROOKLYNITE Featuring Ann Harada, Matt Doyle, Nicolette Robinson, Andrew Call, Nick Cordero and More, Extends through March 29
Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’s AN OCTOROON, Starring Maechi Aharanwa, Pascale Armand, Danielle Davenport, Amber Gray, Ian Lassiter, Austin Smith, Haynes Thigpen, and Mary Wiseman, Extends Again Off-Broadway Through March 29
TheatreWorks Silicon Valley presents Rajiv Joseph’s THE LAKE EFFECT Starring Adam Poss, Nilanjana Bose, Jason Bowen through March 29
Photos: Wendell Pierce, Kevin Mambo, Toccarra Cash, Thaddeus Daniels, Wendell Franklin and Megan Robinson Set for The Billie Holiday Theatre Production of Jackie Alexander’s Brothers from the Bottom through March 29 
Jose Llana Set for Lincoln Center’s American Songbook Debut on March 12
Photos: Jeanne Sakata, Jeremy Guskin, Angela Sauer, Andrew Ross Wynn, Elyse Mirto and More Set for A Noise Within’s FIGARO, March 1-May 10 
OBIE Award-winner Jojo Gonzalez, Jessica Almasy, Marcia DeBonis, Brad Heberlee, Sakina Jaffrey, Erik Lochtefeld and Babak Tafti Set for Ars Nova’s World Premiere of SMALL MOUTH SOUNDS, March 10 – April 11; OBIE Winner Rachel Chavkin to Direct
Stan Egi, Ellen Crawford, Paige Lindsey White, Bruce Turk, Greg Watanabe and More Set for Jessica Kubzansky helmed PYGMALION at The Pasadena Playhouse, March 17- April 12, 2015
Asia Society Presents Wu Tong: Song of the Sheng on March 19
Mar. 24: An Evening with Amy Tan at New-York Historical Society
Broadway Bound Doctor Zhivago Featuring Tam Mutu, Kelli Barrett, Tom Hewitt, Paul Nolan, Lora Lee Gayer, Melody Butiu and More Kicks Off Rehearsal; Previews Begin March 27
Apr. 13: THE FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE Original Cast Album Release Concert at Joe’s Pub will feature André De Shields, Adam Chanler-Berat, Kevin Mambo, Kyle Beltran, Ken Barnett, Britton Smith, Akron Watson and Juson Williams
Rebecca Naomi Jones kicks off run as Yitzhak in HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH on April 14
Tony Award® Nominees Omar Metwally and Arian Moayed to star in Rajiv Joseph’s GUARDS AT THE TAJ, helmed by Amy Morton, at Atlantic Theater Company, May 20-June 28
Photos: National Black Theatre Festival 2013; NBTF runs August 3-8, 2015 and will include Act III – A Celebration of Life Reception saluting the late theatre icon Garland Lee Thompson, Sr.
Photos: John W. Kuo, Jessica Hagedorn, and Neal Katyal Receive AALDEF 2015 Justice in Action Awards
Suzan-Lori Parks’ FATHER COMES HOME FROM THE WARS, PARTS 1, 2 & 3 is the 2015 Winner of the Edward M. Kennedy Prize for Drama Inspired by American History 
THE GET DOWN, Baz Luhrmann’s New Drama Series Set in 1970s NYC That Gave Birth to Hip-Hop, Punk and Disco, to Premiere on Netflix in 2016
The American Playwriting Foundation Creates The Relentless Award to Honor the late Philip Seymour Hoffman
Variety.com: Ken Jeong to Star in ABC Medical Comedy Pilot ‘Dr. Ken’
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, Advantageous, Oh Lucy!, Meru, Umrika, The Chinese Mayor, The Stanford Prison Experiment Among 2015 Sundance Film Festival Award Winners
Photos: Tony Award Winning Playwright David Henry Hwang, NEFA, Graham Sheffield CBE and Susan Stockton Receive 2015 ISPA Awards
Photos: Late Night at HERE LIES LOVE with Jaygee Macapugay, David Byrne, Jose Llana, Conrad Ricamora, Melody Butiu and More
THE WIZ Turns 40- Photos from Original Broadway Production and BC/EFA Gypsy of The Year Celebration Featuring André De Shields, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Ken Page, Charl Brown, Carly Hughes, Christina Sajous, Alton Fitzgerald White, Lillias White and More
Photos: Ellen Burstyn, Baz Luhrmann, John Leguizamo, Elizabeth Rodriguez, Stephen McKinley Henderson, John Patrick Shanley, David Henry Hwang, Liza Colón-Zayas, Kenneth Lonergan and More Celebrate Stephen Adly Guirgis at The Mimi Awards
Crafting a Career
Click here  for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2015 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at liachangpr@gmail.com

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