Misery Street is a Shaka Original in association with Gene Bua Acting for Life Theatre
WORLD PREMIERE OF ‘ MISERY STREET’ AUGUST 13, 2004, BURBANK
Urban Drama : A Shaka Original Features Large Multi-Generational Cast
What is life like for the men, women and children of Misery Street ? How do a lifetime of pain and a world of missed opportunities collide in a roller coaster of tranquil, gut-wrenching and poignant moments? Take a ride to “ Misery Street ,” the World Premiere of a new drama, debuting Friday, August 13, at 8:00 p.m. , at the Gene Bua Acting for Life Theatre in Burbank .
On the porches and streets of one urban neighborhood unfolds a gritty drama that encompasses themes of modern society that cut across cultural, ethnic and economic lines: love, passion, drugs, alcoholism, mothers raising children without fathers in the home, teenagers being forced to grow up too quickly, without proper direction. In the midst of this, a mother speaks to her deaf son in sign language, and Miss Misery watches over all, a silent Greek chorus and witness to tragedy, hope and redemption.
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In “ Misery Street ,” Michael Kachingwe helms an intergenerational cast that includes Nicci Bates, Felisha Norman, Erika RoShawn Hicks, Rodrick Jean-Charles, Sean Ryal, Charmain Crook , Jordan Llavanes, Shay Roundtree, Justin Etheredge, Selma Pinkard, Kacy-Earl David, Kem Saunders, Doug Howington, and eight-year-old Thulani Kachingwe. Mike Guzik is lighting designer, and Joshua Fagan is technical director/scenic designer.
Director Michael Kachingwe has helmed productions such as “Blues for An Alabama Sky at the Unicorn Theatre in Kansas City, “Pearl Cleage’s Flyin’ West” at New American Theatre in Rockford, Ill., and “Fences,” “Romeo and Juliet, “The Colored Museum, “A Raisin in the Sun, “Of Mice and Men,” and others at The Coterie in Kansas City. He has acted in many productions at the Goodman, Shubert, Steppenwolf, and Kennedy Center theatres, among others, plus a recurring role in the daytime drama “The Bold and The Beautiful.”
Cast member Erika RoShawn Hicks was nominated for three NAACP theatre awards for “Once On This Island” at the Complex. Sean Ryal has a recurring role as “Dre” in Showtime’s new fall series “Sucker Free City,” directed by Spike Lee. Shay Roundtree played “Junie Gatling” on NBC-TV’s “Kingpin.” Douglas Howington has appeared in “ER,” “Scrubs,” and “The West Wing,” and is a professional comedian. 17-year-old Justin Etheredge is putting together a pilot for his own tv show in collaboration with Macy Gray. Nicci Bates has appeared on local stages in “Once On This Island” and “Rebecca,” both at the Complex, and “Owl and the Pussycat” at NoHo’s Whitmore/Lindley. Scenic Designer Joshua Fagan's credits include "The Laramie Project." He will continue his design training at the world-renowned Academy of Performing Arts in Prague
This is the third production of Shaka Originals, and many of whose members met over a decade ago while earning their BFA and MFA degrees at Northern Illinois University in Chicago .