For shows between September 22nd and Oct 2nd please vist WINE IN THE FRINGE
1960s Harlem, Bill paints towards Black Pride; Tommy's living it. Alice Childress invites the Black community into an uncompromising conversation about what it means to love ourselves, and what we are willing to give up to truly love each other. The PAC collaborates with TheBlackBestFriend for its 11th Fringe.
Wine in the Wilderness examines race, gender, and class against the backdrop of the 1964 race riots in Harlem. The plot unfolds in the apartment of a painter creating a triptych to illustrate the phases of Black Womanhood. When friends introduce him to a potential model for the final painting, assumptions unravel and the true power of Black women is acknowledged and celebrated. Under AlexandraEspinoza’s direction, the production will feature Akeem Davis, Ciera Gardner, Keith Livingston, Natajia Sconiers, and Brian Anthony Wilson.
Director Espinoza has a rich connection to the piece: “Wine in the Wilderness was the first "classic" play I read that spoke directly to the Black community with no translations, code switches, or cultural exposition for a non-Black audience. That felt refreshing, liberating, and exciting. It's important for audiences to know that the conversations we are having today about how to build a better future for our communities have been happening for generations.”
Espinoza hopes the production demonstrates “that there are as many ways to be a Black person in search of liberation as there are Black people on this planet. We are stronger in our multiplicities and the first step in building community is the simplest and yet most complex of all – listening to each other.”
Akeem Davis, Ciera Gardner, Keith Livingston, Natajia Sconiers and Brian Anthony Wilson
Director: AZ Espinoza
Stage Manager: Autumn Blalock
Artist-in-Residence: Jihan Thomas
Lighting Designer: Bless Rudisill
Costume Designer: Aly Gonzalez
Set Design/Projection Design /Technical Director: James Mobley
Set/Props Designer: Sara Outing
Sound Designer: Adiah Hicks
Filmographer: Taj Rauch
Dramaturg: Kirstie Floyd
theBlackBestFriend is a creative hub for Black joy, resilience, and community. Born out of the necessity of rescuing Black characters from flat narratives, theBlackBestFriend claims the whole space to tell the full story. theBlackBestFriend prioritizes radical accessibility to Black stories for members of the global majority. theBlackBestFriend is AZ Espinoza, Brie Knight, and you (if you know, you know).
The Philadelphia Artists’ Collective (PAC) is a site-specific classical theatre company. Founded in 2008, PAC is a cohort of artists dedicated to creating unique theatrical events that examine our humanity through rare classical plays and multidisciplinary collaboration. By staging rarely produced texts, PAC expands the classical canon to be more inclusive of world cultures. PAC tells stories with an engaging and visceral clarity, inspiring audiences to lean in and more deeply consider the fundamental elements of humanity. A vital part of the PAC's mission is The Artist-In-Residence Program, which bridges the gap between performance and visual art, encouraging dialogue among artists and enriching encounters with audiences. PAC has staged productions in a variety of site-specific locations throughout Philadelphia, including the Woodlands Mansion & Cemetery, the USS Olympia, and the historic Physick House. In 2015, PAC won the June and Steve Wolfson Award for Evolving Theatre Company.