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Hero Theatre Awarded Sundance Institute Arts Organization; Staged Reading Announced

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The company will present Flex, a play that centers young, Black female Basketball Team In Rural Arkansas.

Hero Theatre Awarded Sundance Institute Arts Organization; Staged Reading Announced

Designated one of 18 U.S.-based BIPOC-led arts organizations to be awarded an Arts Organization Grant by The Sundance Institute this past week, Hero Theatre has announced casting for a staged reading of Flex that will open its 10th anniversary season at Downtown L.A.'s Inner-City Arts on Saturday, Aug. 28 at 7 p.m.

Flex is being developed and presented as part of Hero Ignite, a new division of the company that serves as an incubator for original work inspired by the experiences of youth in today's America. Jasmine Ashanti, TaiReikca L.A., Zena Reeder, Chaz Shermil, Carolyn Michelle Smith and Akilah Walker have been set to star in the reading. Written by Candrice Jones and directed by Hero founding member Korey Jackson, the play introduces us to a team of young, Black female basketball players in rural Arkansas. They have dreams of going pro - but first, they must navigate the pressures of adolescence. Written in the structure of a four-quarter basketball game, Flex presents a world in which the art of basketball reflects life itself.

The remainder of the Hero Theatre season will include a fully-staged revival of Tea by Velina Hasu Houston, about five Japanese "war brides" thrust into rural Kansas following World War II; and Rise: An Immersive Stand for Safety, a Hero-commissioned world premiere devised and directed by immersive theater artist Jack McCarthy that tackles themes of anti-violence, anti-suicide and gun control for high school youth. Both productions will open in 2022. Earlier this year, Hero Theatre and its offshoot, Hero Multimedia, launched Nuestro Planeta, a ten-year multimedia, new works initiative that educates Latinx film and theater audiences about environmental justice within the Americas.

Hero Theatre is a community-based company that uses art to model and bring about social and environmental justice. They invite audiences to envision and experience America as they do. Hero examines classical and contemporary works, ensuring that equity, diversity, and inclusion remain in the forefront.

Tickets to the staged reading of Flex are free. Inner-City Arts is located at 720 Kohler Street in Downtown L.A. (just south of the Arts District). For more information and to make a reservation, go to www.HeroTheatre.org.



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