June 21, 2019
Directed by Edris Cooper-Anifowoshe
$15 – $20, NOTA
What do you do when your Nigerian drag queen goddess instructs you to tell a new story? You summon your artistic ancestors to help you craft a tale that’ll stem the rising tide of fascism. And you make sure your community is with you every step of the way.
A call to arms, a spectacular reckoning, MANIFESTO is Rotimi Agbabiaka’s latest solo play, in which you the audience (and a cast of historical (s)heroes) will help a young artist create a manifesto for a 21st century theatre of liberation.
We’re gonna speak, sing, and scream our way to an art form capable of taking on the unhinged forces of racist, fascist, capitalistic foolishness … and winning. Come prepared to take a stand.
Rotimi Agbabiaka (writer/performer) is an actor, writer, director, and teacher who uses humor, glamor, and drama to challenge the status quo. He most recently performed Off Broadway in If Pretty Hurts Ugly Must Be a Muhfucka and has graced the stages of such companies as Yale Rep, American Conservatory Theatre, Magic Theatre, Shotgun Players, Brava Theater (Bootycandy, Theatre Bay Area award), California Shakespeare Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, and the Tony Award-winning San Francisco Mime Troupe, where he is a collective member. His solo play, Homeless, won Best Solo Performance at the SF Fringe Festival and his most recent solo, Type/Caste, premiered at the National Queer Arts Festival and received the Theatre Bay Area award for Outstanding Solo Production. His play, Seeing Red, co-written with Joan Holden and Ira Marlowe, received a TBA award nomination for Outstanding World Premiere Musical. As a director, Rotimi helmed the world premiere of VS. at TheatreFIRST. He teaches acting and play creation to students from pre-school through college. Rotimi’s performed at museums (the deYoung), in parks (with We Players), on street corners (with Jess Curtis’ GRAVITY), and on nightlife stages around the world. www.rotimionline.com
Edris Cooper-Anifowoshe (director) is an award winning actor, director and writer and is the founding artistic director of Black Artists Contemporary Cultural Experience, a resident company at Brava! For Women in The Arts. She most recently directed Robert O’Hara’s An American Ma(u)l at Brava Theatre, Seeing Red with the San Francisco Mime Troupe, and the world premiere of Philip Howze’s all of what you love and none of what you hate at SF Playhouse. She is the creator of several solo pieces including Traveling While Black, which premiered in the Brava Studio in 2014, and the published Adventures of a Black Girl In Search of Academic Clarity and Inclusion (Northwestern University Press). As a director, Cooper-Anifowoshe has worked nationally at Trinity Repertory Company, Capital Repertory, Southern Rep in New Orleans, Mark Taper Forum, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Woolly Mammoth, Curious Theatre in Denver, and Arts Theatre, Ibadan, Nigeria. Cooper Anifowoshe’s Bay Area directing credits include the West Coast premieres of Relativity at the Magic Theatre, The Old Settler at TheaterWorks in Palo Alto; Crying Holy at Theatre Rhinoceros, and Urban Zulu Mambo and Blue/Orange at Lorraine Hansberry Theatre. At Brava with BACCE, Cooper Anifowoshe directed West Coast premieres of Sweet Maladies by Zakiyyah Alexander (winner of TBA Award for Best Ensemble) and In a Daughter’s Eyes by Oakland native, A. Zell Williams. She holds an M.F.A. in Directing from the University of Iowa.