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San Francisco's African-American Shakespeare Company Announces 2022-23 Season

The 2023 season begins July '22 with Echoes of Us and end with Romeo and Juliet for America in May of '23.

The African-American Shakespeare Company will feature a total of 5 productions during its 2022-23 season that will include an original work Echoes of Us, curated and produced by the company in conjunction with The Craft Institute's African Diasporic Network and funded by The Black Seed Fund. Echoes of Us will be directed by famed actress and director Michele Shay and will run July 14-17 at the Marines Memorial Theater.

Following that will be The Slave Who Loved Caviar written by Ishmael Reed which delves into the life led by noted artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. Directed by the company's artistic director, L. Peter Callender, the piece will be filmed in the company's new space in Hayes Valley for streaming at the end of October.

December sees a revamp of the company's beloved and long-running Cinderella, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year and moves from The Herbst to the Marines Memorial Theater. One notable aspect of the production is that it will be directed by Devin Cunningham, who is very familiar with the piece having performed in it three times, including twice playing an evil step-sister and another playing the Prince.

Cunningham's vision will incorporate more aspects of Black culture through music, dance and costume. Also, because the play is moving to the Marines Memorial there will also be a new set, which allows for more opportunities to reimagine both the book and the show in order to speak to contemporary Black audiences. Says Cunningham, "Having been in the show, I am excited to be bringing this hilarious story of growth and resilience to life set in a fantastical Bay Area."

February will see the arrival of The Glass Menagerie, which was originally going to be performed starting in February of 2022, but which was delayed by the Omicron surge. This quintessential Williams play will be directed by Monica White Ndounou who sees it as an opportunity to view what life was like for Black Americans in the 1930s as well as explore the intersections of Blackness, gender, disability and class.

Finishing the season will be the adaptation Romeo and Juliet for America. After a successful run at American Stage in St Petersburg, Fl. in 2021, Callender brings his adaptation of Shakespeare's most beloved romance-with a little twist-to AASC. Says Callender, "Prepare yourselves for a warm surprise!"
San Francisco's African-American Shakespeare Company Announces 2022-23 Season



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