Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off

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2019 Tony Award winner André De Shields spent his day off from HADESTOWN at The National Black Theatre Festival® (NBTF) in Winston-Salem, NC.

During his remarks at the kickoff press conference at the Winston-Salem Marriott on July 29, De Shields shared nuggets from his Tony Awards acceptance speech which included 3 cardinal rules for sustainability and longevity in the arts, and added a fourth:

1. Surround yourself with people whose eyes light up when they see you coming.
2. Slowly is the fastest way to get to where you want to be.
3. The top of one mountain is the bottom of the next, so keep climbing.
4. God created Black people, and Black people created everything else.

De Shields then broke into an uplifting rendition of "Lift Every Voice and Sing," and the entire star-studded dais and audience members joined in.

Check out the photos and video below!

The NBTF is one of the most historic and culturally significant events in the history of black theatre and is produced by The North Carolina Black Repertory Company (NCBRC) in Winston-Salem, known as Black Theatre Holy Ground. NBTF is the only theatre festival in the country offering six consecutive days of professional theatre. The NCBRC is celebrating its 40th anniversary, while the NBTF celebrates its 30th.

Acclaimed actors Margaret Avery and Chester Gregory served as celebrity co-chairs of the week-long event which wrapped on August 3, 2019. Some of the other celebrity guests in attendance at the press conference included 2019 Tony Winner Harold Wheeler, 2000 Tony Winner Brian Stokes Mitchell, 1992 Tony Winner Tonya Pinkins, Greenleaf's Keith David and Lamman Rucker, Geoffrey Owens, Hal Williams, Idris Ackamoor, Petri Hawkins Byrd, Colby Christina, Bill Cobbs, Fay Hauser, Ebony Jo-Ann, Rhodessa Jones, Woodie King, Jr., Ted Lange, Khalil Middleton, Qaasim Middleton, Barbara Montgomery, Herman LaVern Jones, Darnell Williams, Hattie Winston and many more.

NBTF is the international outreach program of the North Carolina Black Repertory Company, founded by the late Larry Leon Hamlin in 1979. The Festival, also founded by Hamlin, has been held biennially since 1989. The event attracts thousands of national and international patrons, theatre professionals and scholars to Winston-Salem, North Carolina. It was named one of the Top 100 events in North America by the American Business Association. For more information, visit www.nbtf.org.

Photo Credit: Lia Chang

Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
National Black Theatre Festival Press Conference at the Winston-Salem Marriott Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Andre De Shields (center) and the star-studded dais Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Brian Stokes Mitchell, Nana Malaya Rucker-Oparabea and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Idris Ackamoor, Herman LaVern Jones, Nana Malaya Rucker-Oparabea and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Andre De Shields and Thembi Mtshali Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Leslie Uggams, Andre De Shields, Thelma Pollard and Graham Pratt Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Brian Stokes Mitchell, Darnell Williams, Leslie Uggams, Ted Lange and Chester Gregory Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Keith David and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Sylvia Sprinkle-Hamlin, executive producer of National Black Theatre Festival and president of the North Carolina Black Repertory Company board Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Idris Ackamoor and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Tonya Pinkins and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Margaret Avery, celebrity co-chair of the 2019 National Black Theatre Festival Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Brian McLaughlin, media relations director for the National Black Theatre Festival Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Chester Gregory, celebrity co-chair of the 2019 National Black Theatre Festival Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Chester Gregory, celebrity co-chair of the 2019 National Black Theatre Festival, gives Andre De Shields a shoutout Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Nigel Alston, Executive Director of the North Carolina Black Repertory Company Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Jackie Alexander, Artistic Director of the North Carolina Black Repertory Company Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Michele Shay Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Michele Shay and Roscoe Orman Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Leslie Uggams Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Ebony Jo-Ann Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Brian Stokes Mitchell Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Geoffrey Owens Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Starletta DuPois, Hattie Winston, Ebony Jo-Ann and Barbara Montgomery Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
2019 Tony Award Winner Harold Wheeler Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
New Federal Theatre Producer Woodie King, Jr. and the star-studded dais Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Roscoe Orman, Starletta DuPois, Hattie Winston, Ebony Jo-Ann and Barbara Montgomery Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Andre De Shields, Leslie Uggams and Chester Gregory Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Andre De Shields and Chester Gregory Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Andre De Shields and Kim Sullivan Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Idris Ackamoor, Rhodessa Jones and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Michael Dinwiddie and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Michael Colyar and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Colby Christina and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Hal Williams and Woodie King, Jr. Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Darnell Williams and Leslie Uggams Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Toni SeaWright and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Beth Turner, Publisher and Editor of Black Masks with Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Art Evans and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Larry Muhammad, Woodie King, Jr. Beth Turner, Kim Sullivan and Herman LaVern Jones Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Ted Lange Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Petri Hawkins-Byrd and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Ted Lange, Woodie King, Jr. and Petri Hawkins-Byrd Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Andre De Shields, Rita Gregory and Garland Thompson, Jr. Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Ted Lange and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Ted Lange, Andre De Shields and Rome Neal Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Ted Lange, Lia Chang and Andre De Shields. Photo by Rome Neal Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Bill Cobbs and Andre De Shields Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Barbara Montgomery, Andre De Shields and a guest Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Kim Sykes, Andre De Shields and Tonya Pinkins Photo Flash: Andre De Shields 'Lifts Every Voice' At The National Black Theatre Festival Kick Off
Andre De Shields and Elizabeth Van Dyke


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