The 15th Biennial National Black Theatre Festival (NBTF) is not only the premiere festival for African-Americans but it’s the largest of its kind in the world, with a mission that fosters artistic diversity and excellence.
Produced by the North Carolina Black Repertory Company, this year’s festival, which celebrated 30 years of operation with recording-breaking attendance, took place July 31 – August 5 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, affectionately known as the City of the Arts.
Before the NBTF, which was founded by the late Larry Leon Hamlin, the black theater community was isolated; no other national or global organization represented as wide a range of disciplines or offered as much support in the theater community.
Thanks to the NBTF, theater goers have the opportunity to witness and patronize the full range of diverse works of the African American diaspora in one place.
“This festival has brought in more first-time festival goers,” says executive producer Sylvia Sprinkle-Hamlin, who has helmed the organization since her husband’s death in 2007. “We have been producing the festival since 1989, so we have it down to a science now.”
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