NEW YORK, NY – DeWanda Wise, star of the Netflix series She’s Gotta Have It, and her husband, Alano Miller, best known for the WGN America drama series Underground, will join DG member TED LANGE, the actor, director, playwright, and screenwriter known for the TV series The Love Boat, as co-hosts of New Federal Theatre's 50th Anniversary Virtual Gala, January 17, 2021, from 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM. The event will celebrate the esteemed organization, founded by Woodie King, Jr. in 1970, for its 50 years of theatrical excellence.
This virtual gala will be accessible from the theatre’s website, www.newfederaltheatre.com, and will honor Cliff Frazier, Ron Himes, S. Epatha Merkerson, Ed Pitt, Phylicia Rashad, Oz Scott, Beth Turner, Glynn Turman, and Douglas Turner Ward.
The celebration is written by Bill Harris and directed by Dean Irby. Honorary Committee for the event includes DEBBIE ALLEN, Harry Belafonte, Vin Diesel, Toni Fay, Danny Glover, Samuel L. Jackson, La Tanya Richardson Jackson, Sidney Poitier, Issa Rae, Phylicia Rashad, Lamman Rucker, Glynn Turman, Mfundi Vundla, Lynn Whitfield, and ELIZABETH VANDYKE.
Woodie King, Jr.’s New Federal Theatre has produced over 450 mainstage plays, an astonishing and influential record of achievement, sending multiple plays to Broadway and launching numerous minority and women playwrights and actors into prominent careers. Its alumni are an honor roll of artists of color from the 1970s through today.
Several early successes brought NFT to national prominence: Black Girl by J.e. Franklin, won a Drama Desk Award, The Taking of Miss Janie by ED BULLINS moved from NFT to Lincoln Center and won the Drama Critics Circle Award; For Colored Girls Who Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf by NTOZAKE SHANGE performed on Broadway for ten months (co-produced with the late Joseph Papp) and was nominated for the Tony Award before embarking on a three-year national tour. It has subsequently been performed regionally and around the world and was revived off-Broadway in 2019.
For more info, including an expanded list of the company’s distinguished alumni, see: http://www.jsnyc.com/season/about_NFT.html.