Six Black Male Playwrights to Be Featured in The New Black Fest's HANDS UP This Fall

In the spirit of Facing Our Truth, The New Black Fest will commission 6 black male playwrights to write monologues and/or performance essays entitled HANDS UP: 6 playwrights, 6 testaments. The playwrights include Dennis Allen II, Nathan James, Nathan Yungerberg, Eric Holmes, Idris Goodwin, and Glenn NSangou.

Inspired by the events in Ferguson and other cities, the purpose of Hands Up is to contribute to the current nation-wide activism to combat police and societal targeting of black and brown men. The collection of plays will be premiere at the Segal Theater at CUNY Graduate Center in the Fall. The New Black Fest is a black theater collective that's dedicated to celebrating the diverse voices and aesthetics from the African Diaspora.

Nathan Yungerberg lives between Brooklyn and Oakland. His play's: The Son of Dawn and Pousada Azul, had member's readings at the Playwrights' Center in 2012. Pousada Azul was also featured in the Blackboard reading series at the Cell in NYC, Z Below and The Lorraine Hansberry Theater in San Francisco. Nathan was also a season 4 playwright for The Fire This Time festival which featured his ten minute play Orchids and Polka Dots. He has also participated in the 3rd annual 48 Hours in Harlem Festival and the National Black Theater's "Keep Soul Alive Monday's". Nathan's play Brush Strokes, was the winner of the third annual Ken Davenport 10 minute play festival in NYC.

Eric Holmes is currently a second year MFA Playwriting candidate at University of Iowa's Playwrights Workshop. Former residencies and fellowships include Space At Ryder Farm (The Stick Up) and LaGuardia Performing Arts Playwriting Lab (Falls For Jodie.) His work has been seen and developed at New York Theatre Workshop (Nimpsey Pink), Lark Play Development Center, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Source, Sonnet Repertory, Stony Brook Southampton Playwriting Conference, Space 55 in Phoenix, and University of Washington where he was a guest artist. His monologue,W.F.C., is published by The Good Ear Review. Holmes co-founded Team Play, a theatre-for-young adults education program at Primary Stages Theatre Company and served on the LARK Play Development Center's LitWing.

Dennis A Allen II; New York native, Playwright and Actor. Received his MFA from Mac Wellman's Brooklyn College Playwriting program. His play "THE MUD IS THICKER IN MISSISSIPPI" directed by Christopher Burris, won the 2010 Samuel French Off-Off Broadway Short Play Festival.

Recipient of the 2012 and 2013 Himan Brown Creative Writing Award. Collaborative Writer for The American Slavery Project's 2012 "Unheard Voices". Featured playwright for 2013 The Fire This Time Festival and Harlem9's 48 hours in Harlem. 2013 commissioned writer for The Schomburg Junior Scholars, "Letter from Birmingham Jail" theatrical performance. His plays have had featured readings in; Act Now Foundation, Liberation Theatre Company, Classical Theater of Harlem's Future Classics reading series, and National Black Theatre's Keep Soul Alive reading series.

Glenn Gordon (NSangou Njikam)- is an actor and playwright from Baltimore, MD. He is a current member of the Emerging Writers Group at The Public Theater. His acting credits include Henry V (Classical Theatre of Harlem), Deep Azure (Congo Square Theatre Company), Revenge of a King (NYC Fringe) and The Actor's Rap. He wrote and performed Re:Definition, as a part the Hip Hop Theater Festival. Glenn is also co-founder of The Continuum Project, Inc., a company using the Arts and African Ancestry DNA testing to foster healing and empowerment in communities. He has traced his ancestry to the Tikar people in Cameroon.

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