I am excited to announce that Other Side of the Game has been accepted into the 13th annual rock paper sistahz Festival! Coordinated each year by b current (the first organization to support my development as a theatre artist btw), this incredible festival has supported the development of new works by artists of colour throughout the city for years.
“b current is the hotbed for culturally-rooted theatre development in the Toronto area. Originally founded as a place for black artists to create, nurture, and present their new works, our company has grown to support artists from all diasporas. We have striven for over 22 years to create space for diverse voices to be heard, always with a focus on engaging the communities from which our stories emerge. As a result, these communities hold our company in trust and respect the work that we do.”
This year we are honoured to join a line-up of incredible artists who will be presenting as part of 23 Hours Live (you heard right – 23 hours of works are being presented one-after-the-other…amazing right?!). The dynamic, legendary and brilliant artists include trey anthony, Catherine Hernandez, Ngozi Paul, Jajube Mandiela, Lillian Allen and d’bi young!
This reading of Other Side of the Game is a presentation of the second draft of the script, written by Amanda Parris. Directed by Cara Eastcott, it stars Abena Malika, Shomari Downer, Amanda Parris and Drae Walsh. Here are the logistics:
- Date: Saturday, May 17th, 2014
- Time: 1pm
- Location: Daniels Spectrum Aki Studio Theatre – 585 Dundas Street East, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
You don’t want to miss it! And check out pics below of our super talented (and good-looking!) cast:
ABENA MALIKA – actor
Abena is thrilled to be joining the cast of Other Side of the Game for this year’s festival! Film/TV credits include:Rookie Blue (ABC), Flashpoint (CTV/CBS), Suits (USA Network/BRAVO!) and Lost Girl (BRAVO!). She also starred in Charles Officer’s film 100 Musicians, which was chosen to screen at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival. Theatre credits include: Intimate Apparel (ATP), Cruel and Tender, directed by Atom Egoyan (The Canadian Stage Company), A Raisin in the Sun, Jitters, A Mid-Summer Night’s Dream, e.e. cummings in song(Soulpepper Theatre), Da Kink in MY Hair (Mirvish/San Diego Repertory Theatre, Hackney Empire Theatre),Adventures of a Black Girl in Search of God, Mamma Mia! (Mirvish). Abena is the recipient of a 2007 NAACP Award and two Dora Award nominations. As a singer, she has toured with many artists, notably with the band Jacksoul opening for the legendary James Brown on his final Canadian tour.
SHOMARI DOWNER – actor
Actor Shomari Downer draws from a diverse range of life experiences, realities and communities to bring characters to life. A child between worlds, the son of British-Jamaican parents, Shomari spent a lot of time visiting his family of 5 brothers and 6 sisters in England and growing up as a single child in with his mother in Canada.Ranging from stage to television to film, Shomari’s passion for authentic story telling and honest characters has led him to explore a range of emotions – a challenge that Shomari relishes. Being cast in “Born Ready” and the Toronto run of “Secrets of a Black boy” Shomari is no stranger to the stage and has found great success in cobbling together slices of life to tell moving stories through his craft.From his start on the screen in John Singleton’s “4 Brothers” to him taking on the lead in the Lifetime movie “One Angry Juror”, Shomari Downer has embarked on a beautiful Quixotic journey to discover himself while inhabiting the lives of others.
AMANDA PARRIS – actor/playwright/producer
Bio can be found here.
DRAE WALSH – actor
CARA EASTCOTT – director
Cara is Toronto based multi-disciplinary creative producer and performer who believes in the power of good storytelling and cooperation. She works on combining community development with the arts and encourages the use of humor and music in everything. She has been a member of local theatre ensembles and productions with organizations such as b current theatre company and Art Starts. She has performed stand up comedy and spoken word in Toronto and Mumbai, India. Cara has worked as the Associate Producer at Goldëlox Productions in Toronto, a social issue documentary production company. Cara is currently the Community Liaison and Event Producer at the Abilities Arts Festival – an annual festival dedicated to disability arts.