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Black Theatre Coalition Announces Inaugural Cohort of General Management Fellows

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The General Management Fellows includes: Nazlah Black at 101 Productions, Taylor Courtney at Bespoke Theatricals, David Norwood at RCI Theatricals and more.

Black Theatre Coalition Announces Inaugural Cohort of General Management Fellows

Co-founders T. Oliver Reid, Warren Adams, and Reginald "Reggie" Van Lee, along with Executive Director Olivia Jones and Program Director Lico Whitfield, announced today the members of their inaugural cohort of General Management Fellows as part of the Black Theatre Coalition Fellowship Program.

The Black Theatre Coalition Fellowship in General Management is co-funded by The Theater Leadership Project led by producers Barbara Broccoli (Once, The Band's Visit) & Lia Vollack (MJ the Musical, Almost Famous) and six Broadway general management offices: 101 Productions, Bespoke Theatricals, Foresight Theatrical, RCI Theatricals, Showtown Theatricals, and Thompson Turner Productions.

The Fellowship in General Management is a two-year fellowship that began in September of 2021 and has provided each fellow with job placement in a general management office and a $50,000 annual stipend. This initial cohort of General Management Fellows includes: Nazlah Black at 101 Productions, Taylor Courtney at Bespoke Theatricals, David Norwood at RCI Theatricals, Carrli Cooper at Thompson Turner Productions, Devon Miller and AJ Jackson at Foresight Theatrical. A BTC GM Fellow will join the Showtown Theatrical office this Spring.

Partner & General Manager of Bespoke Theatricals, Amy Jacobs stated "From the first moment Warren reached out to me in June of 2020 with this idea, I said "yes, sign me up!" Having six Black Fellows placed in busy GM offices with senior level mentorship for two-years is a complete game changer for our industry. I am grateful to Reggie, Warren, and T for their industry leadership in this vital area of off-stage and management representation."

The BTC Fellowship provides each fellow the opportunity for immersion in their area of the industry, working alongside current industry leaders at the highest levels, learning the process of theater making from the executive, creative and/or administrative areas. Mentorship and guidance throughout the Fellowship Program from Black professionals currently working in the industry and from BTC Accomplices within companies/offices where fellows will be placed. Additionally, Black Theatre Coalition will produce "Pop Up Events" in which the full cohort of fellows will have the opportunity to put skills into practice.

Black Theatre Coalition recently competed its inaugural Apprentice Program with the opening of the critically acclaimed Broadway revival, COMPANY, BTC also has an ongoing Broadway Fellowship Program which has currently funded 20 fellows with more to come in this first year, as well as a regional fellowship program in cooperation with Broadway Across America/JGO.

Over the 155 years since the very first Broadway musical (The Black Crook) premiered in 1866, the "Great White Way" has seen 3,002 musicals and 8,326 plays. Across all of these productions, there have been only Ten Black directors of a musical (0.3%) , Eleven Black directors of a Play (0.13%) and Seventeen Black choreographers of a Musical (0.56%). All of this directly correlates to the fact that there have only ever been Two Black lead producers of a musical (representing 0.06% of all Broadway musicals). Furthermore, the numbers for Writers, Composers, Scenic, Lighting, Costume, Sound, Video, Music Contractors, Musical Directors, Arrangers, Orchestrators, Hair/Wigs/Makeup, Casting, General Management, Stage Management, Company Management, PR and Marketing/Advertising range from 0 to 5 in each category.

In a joint statement, Mr. Reid, Mr. Adams, and Mr. Van Lee said, "Once we identified just how vast the disparity is between the perceived inclusivity on stage and the utter dearth of black professionals off stage, we began outlining ways in which we could address and ultimately eradicate this invisible imparity. This outline provided a clear path forward for our organization and our entire industry. It's high time to end this 'illusion of inclusion' by reshaping the theatrical ecosystem for those who have been marginalized by systematically racist and biased power structures that have endured since the dawn of the American theater."

For more information about the Black Theatre Coalition, visit their website www.BlackTheatreCoalition.org

For partnership inquiries email - Partnership@blacktheatrecoalition.org

For submissions - Submissions@blacktheatrecoaliton.org


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