The Classical Theatre of Harlem (Producing Artistic Director, Ty Jones) kicks off their 13th season in a groundbreaking co-production with The Public Theater and National Black Theatre of DETROIT '67. The UPTOWN MEETS DOWNTOWN kick-off reception will be held on Friday, November 9, 2012, at 7:00 pm at the National Black Theater, 2031-33 Fifth Avenue, between 125th Street and 126th Street in Harlem.
UPTOWN MEETS DOWNTOWN is an unparalleled theatrical collaboration not seen in Harlem since the late 1960's when Dr. Barbara Ann Teer, founder of The National Black Theatre and her friend, Joe Papp, founder of The Public Theater first imagined projects in the late '60s to carve out new spaces on their own terms. It was their vision that theater could be a viable tool for embracing and confronting the complexities of contemporary society while nurturing artists, developing audiences, and affecting change. Fifty years ago, they partnered together on a musical adaptation of Gwendolyn Brooks' poem WE REAL COOL that toured the five boroughs of New York City.
The March 2013 co-production of DETROIT '67, by award-winning playwright Dominique Morisseau and directed by Kwame Kwei-Armah, is the fruit of a new collaboration between these uptown and downtown theater companies, reigniting a connection that began decades ago, bringing together diverse neighborhoods across New York City.
Ty Jones, Artistic Director of CTH, says, "The Classical Theatre of Harlem is standing on the broad shoulders of Dr. Teer and Mr. Papp. These artistic pioneers created institutions that have persevered for over 50 years. I hope to take lessons of their leadership to help preserve and develop cultural treasures for the next 50 years and beyond in the city of New York."
Oskar Eustis, Artistic Director of The Public Theater, says "I am thrilled that the Public is collaborating with CTH and our dear friend Ty Jones on this production of DETROIT '67. The fit between CTH and the Public is a natural one, our missions complement each other beautifully, and I hope this uptown/downtown partnership can be the first of many."
The Classical Theatre of Harlem's new season brings programs from Future Classics, Project Classics, Playwrights Playground, and a summer production of A Midsummer Night's Dream in Marcus Garvey Park. The Classical Theatre of Harlem's firm resolve is to serve the needs of the community and the partnership with The Public Theatre and National Black Theatre furthers their mission to create enriching opportunities for theater arts in Harlem. For more information about the season kick-off reception and to purchase tickets visit http://www.classicaltheatreofharlem.org/.
The Classical Theatre of Harlem (CTH) combines non-traditional casting, original adaptations, music and dance in ways that render works from the classical canon as fresh, innovative, and essentially a new experience of world classics. It is CTH's vision to create the 21st Century Theatre company whose value to its community is inherent and essential, a company that is engaged in producing theatre that has the capacity to change lives and truly reflects the diversity of ideas and racial tapestry that is America. The Classical Theatre of Harlem has garnered critical acclaim from diverse yet established institutions and seeks to create comprehensive access for theatre artists of diverse backgrounds. This includes not only actors, but directors, designers and playwrights. Since its founding in 1999, CTH has presented nearly forty productions including works by Anton Chekhov, Samuel Beckett, Euripides, Jean Genet, Langston Hughes, Adrienne Kennedy, William Shakespeare, Derek Walcott and August Wilson among many others.