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Theater Talk: Succession problems at the African American Cultural Center, home of Paul Robeson Theatre, might be a 'wake up call' for other non-profits.

SPEED OF DARK (L to R) Quentin Gray, Hugh Davis, Vincenzo McNeill, Monish Bhattacharyya. Photo Credit American Repertory Theater of WNY.jpg
American Repertory Theater of WNY
American Repertory Theater of WNY
SPEED OF DARK at American Repertory Theater (L to R) Quentin Gray, Hugh Davis, Vincenzo McNeill, Monish Bhattacharyya

Since the January 2020 death of Agnes Bain, Executive Director since 1979 at the African American Cultural Center (AACC), 350 Masten Avenue, finding a permanent replacement has proved difficult and even led to an on-street protest last week. The current ED, Tina Washington Abubeker, wrote an impassioned Letter to the Editor of The Buffalo Challenger.

Meanwhile, two beloved actors from the AACC's venerable Paul Robeson Theatre, Hugh Davis and Vincenzo McNeill, can be seen in the current American Repertory Theatre's production of African-American playwright Mark Humphrey's SPEED OF DARK.


BETSY CARMICHAEL'S BINGO PALACE starring Joey Bucheker at Shea's Smith Theatre, 658 Main Street (September 25 - October 23) 716-847-0850


TRIAL BY JURY by Gilbert & Sullivan and MR. JERICHO by Ford and Greenback, a double bill, presented by Opera-Lytes September 25 and 26. All performances will take place OUTDOORS at 2 pm at the Community Music School, 217 East Delavan Avenue, Buffalo. (716) 391-0033 https://operalytes.com/mr-jericho-and-trial-by-jury/

WHITE RABBIT, RED RABBIT at The Alleyway Theater continues through October 2. with a different Buffalo actor on stage each night. For the final five shows that's Don Gervasi* - September 24, Joyce Stilson - September 25, Charmagne Chi - September 30, Brandon Williamson - October 1, and Norman Sham* - October 2. https://www.alleyway.com/

SPEED OF DARK, by local African-American playwright Mark Humphries, directed by Matthew LaChiusa, presented by American Repertory Theater of WNY at Compass Performing Arts Center (the old "Theaterloft" now Compass Performing Arts Center at 545 Elmwood Avenue) continues through October 2 featuring Quentin Gray, Hugh Davis, Vincenzo McNeill, Monish Bhattacharyya (see photo). Davis and McNeill are two of the Paul Robeson's most recognizable actors. Worth checking out. https://speedofdark.bpt.me/

FROM HONKY TONK TO PROTEST: A WOMAN’S VIEW OF COUNTRY MUSIC, a musical conceived by Loraine O'Donnell, directed by Lynne Kurdziel Formato, continues at The Kavinoky Theater through October 3.

TO THE NEW GIRL by Samantha Macher, directed by Leyla Gentil, presented by First Look, produced by Pandora Kew and Vanessa Shevat is on stage at the New Phoenix Theatre, 95 Johnson Park in Buffalo through October 3 starring: Kari Becker, Mary Craig, Ciara Davie, Sarah Emmerling, Pandora Kew, Jessie Miller, Kathleen Recchoine, Kathryn Schneider, Vanessa Shevat, and Davida Tolbert.


CAMELOT by Lerner and Loewe at MusicalFare in a small cast version by David Lee, co-directed by Carlos R.A. Jones and Victoria Pérez, continues through October 17 featuring Darryl Semira as Arthur, Gabby McKinley as Guenevere, Alejandro Gabriél Gómez as Lancelot, Arin Lee Dandes as Mordred, and Sam Crystal, Sabrina Kahwaty, and Josh Wilde in a variety of roles. https://musicalfare.com/shows/mainstage/event:camelot-2021/


FROZEN at Shea's Performing Arts Center 646 Main Street closes after tonight's 7:30 pm performance. Good seats are still available both in advance and night of as "rush" tickets.


TOOTSIE (national tour) opens at Shea's Buffalo Theatre October 10.

TRIBUTE opens at Desiderio's Dinner Theatre October 13 at Bobby J's American Grill

ALL THROUGH THE NIGHT presented by the Brazen Faced Varlets (October 8 - 23) at the Alleyway Main Theatre.

AMERICAN SON presented by Ujima (October 8 - 23) at 429 Plymouth in Buffalo

CHORUS LINE presented by O'Connell & Co. (October 15 - 31) at 3200 Elmwood Avenue

PHOTOGRAPH 51 presented by Jewish Repertory Theatre (October 21 - November 14) in the Jewish Community Center in Getzville.

THE CURIOUS CASE OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME presented by "All for One" Productions at Shea's 710 Theatre (October 28 - November 14)

SOMETHING WICKED presented by American Repertory Theatre (October 28 - November 20) 545 Elmwood Avenue in Buffalo

WOMAN IN BLACK presented by the Kavinoky Theatre (Ocdtober 29 - November 21)

Listen for Theater Talk, Friday morning at 6:45 and 8:45 during Morning Edition.
Even though "semi-retired," Peter Hall continues to wear many hats. He is the Sunday afternoon host on WBFO’s “sister station,” Classical 94.5 / WNED where he has produced over 1,000 radio interviews with musical artists. If you see him at a theater with a pen in his hand, he’s probably getting ready to co-host “Theater Talk” with Anthony Chase (heard Friday mornings at 6:45 and 8:45 a.m. on WBFO) or to write a review for www.buffalorising.com. He is also a member of the "Artie Awards" committee (think “Tony Awards for Buffalo theaters”).
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