My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”
- Maya Angelou
AUGUST 20TH, 2020:
With no interval (apart from the rain break, that is) the Gospel story hurtled towards its transcendent climax. Pepe Nufrio (who will be sharing the role of Jesus with Declan Bennett) is a demure Messiah with a touch of the boy band about him.
AUGUST 8TH, 2020:
Talent manager ChiChi Anyanwu talks with RyeTheNewsGuy.com about her new talent management company, CHI Talent Management.
Born out of there COVID-19 pandemic, CHI Talent Management aims to advise, guide, and empower a diverse array of talent in the entertainment industry. In the interview below, ChiChi shares her story about her company's launch, how she got started, her ideal client, diversity in the industry, advice for aspiring/current performers, and MUCH MORE!
AUGUST 4TH, 2020:
Listen to ChiChi Anyanwu's interview with Broadway Radio about Chi Talent Management.
JULY 29TH, 2020:
Kicking off the new year will be The New Black Play Fest’s Hands Up: 7 Playwrights, 7 Testaments (February 2021), from playwrights Nathan James, Nathan Yungerberg, Idris Goodwin, Nambi E. Kelley, Nsangou Njikam, Eric Micha Holmes, and Dennis A. Allen II.
Originally commissioned in 2015 in response to the shooting of Michael Brown, Hands Up has been reimagined by Spelman College students as a full ensemble performance. Keith Arthur Bolden and Alexis Woodard will direct and Alliance Theatre will host preview conversations this fall around the themes of the monologues.
JULY 24TH, 2020:
Casting is set for the concert staging of Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre’s production of Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar, which runs August 14–September 27.
In order to meet social distancing guidelines, the 1,256-seat outdoor venue has been reduced to 390, so there will be nine performances a week to make the production economically viable. Therefore, the roles of Jesus, Judas, and Mary will be double-cast.
Declan Bennett and Pepe Nufrio will share the role of Jesus. Bennett originated the role in the Open Air Theatre production in 2016 and 2017. Nufrio appeared in the North American tour of the Regent’s Park production.
JULY 13TH, 2020: Talent manager ChiChi Anyanwu has launched her own company, CHI Talent Management, to represent stage and screen artists. The company's mission is to advise and empower a diverse array of talent in the entertainment industry.
“Initially I thought about switching careers or going back to school when the pandemic struck, but my clients insisted they still needed me, and I did not want to let them down,” says Anyanwu. “I have always been passionate about connecting a diverse arts community and providing opportunities that advance and strengthen artists’ careers.”
Anyanwu’s clients have appeared in a variety of works, including the Broadway and national touring productions of Wicked, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and Jesus Christ Superstar.
JUNE 11TH, 2020: The Alliance Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia, will present a fully staged production of Hands Up in the fall during its 2020–2021 season, in an effort to provide a platform for Black artists and tell contemporary stories. The work depicts the realities of Black America from the perspective of varying genders, sexual orientations, skin tones, and socioeconomic backgrounds.
Alexis Woodard and Keith Arthur Bolden serve as co-directors, with sound design by Lorenzo Moore and choreography by Keri Garrett. Exact production dates and casting will be announced at a later date.