Explore different worlds and stories through a series of live theatrical performances. With two stages, eight pieces, and showtimes staggered throughout the weekend, you decide how to unwrap your festival experience.
No two pieces are alike. Dance, music, drama, all of the above and more are offered over the course of two days.
SFBATCO is producing three original projects to be presented alongside work by ‘BIPOC legacy arts organizations’ PUSH Dance, Lorraine Hansberry Theatre, Cuicacalli Ballet Folklórico, AFRO SOLO, and the African American Shakespeare Company.
The festival program consists of four ‘Blocks’. Each Block contains two short performances that are thematically linked. Audiences can choose between a 2-Block or 4-Block package. Tickets to single performances or Blocks are not available.
BLOCK A: LEGENDS OF THE BAY
AFROSOLO / SFBATCO(Sign My Name to Freedom)Trace the personal histories of two enigmatic Bay Area Artists and legends in the making through multimedia performance, song dance and spoken word.Founding Artistic Director of AFRO SOLO Thomas Robert Simpson’s “San Francisco: Variations on Joy, White Supremacy, and Hope!” portrays an intimate story of self acceptance.“Sign My Name to Freedom: The Unheard Songs of Betty Reid Soskin”
Musician and theatre creative Jamie Zimmer shares the metamorphic life and music of the nation’s oldest living Park Ranger.
BLOCK B: AFROFUTURIST JOURNEYS
PUSH Dance / SFBATCO(Shining)Dream big, as two performance ensembles come together in physical storytelling and poetry that is truly intergalactic.Raissa Simpson of PUSH Dance explores Black indigeneity with an immersive ensemble dance piece.Playwright and poet Aidaa Peerzada’s SHINING uses movement and spoken word to tell the story of a child of the Sun who sets the world on fire as he works to prove himself to his estranged father.
BLOCK C: BLACK EXCELLENCE
African American Shakespeare Company / Lorraine Hansberry TheatreEmbrace the joy of two deeply respected Black theatre companies in the Bay Area. Lorraine Hansberry Theatre presents “In the Evening by the Moonlight” an original work by Margo Hall and Traci Tolmaire that explores the friendships between Lorraine Hansberry, Nina Simone and James Baldwin.The African American Shakespeare Company performs an excerpt from “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged)[Revised],” a wacky play in which three actors take on 37 plays.
BLOCK D: REIMAGINING AMERICANA
Cuicacalli Ballet Folklorico/SFBATCO(I, Too, Sing America) Feel the beat with these dynamic ensembles as they tell stories through song and dance. Cuicacalli Ballet Folklórico presents México Lindo y Querido, taking the audience on a vibrant journey around México through traditional Folklórico and contemporary dance.I, Too, Sing America celebrates the spectrum of human experience as authored by great American artists of color. Conceived by composer and music director Othello Jefferson, the ITSA team is working on new material with an ensemble of local singers, dancers, and poets.Immerse yourself in wonder and choose your own adventure in this uniquely San Francisco theatre experience, October 16th and 17th at Brava Theater Center.
***In accordance with city and county guidelines, all guests will need to provide proof of full vaccination with an FDA or WHO authorized vaccine and valid ID in order to attend the Festival. “Fully vaccinated” means the performance date must be at least 14 days after the second dose of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine, or at least 14 days after a single-dose COVID-19 vaccine. Additionally, a well-fitting face mask must be worn at all times while inside the building, unless actively eating or drinking.