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THE NEW BLACK FEST is a movement. It’s a call to action inspired by the state of Black theater in the 21st century. It is a bold step motivated by a growing need within the Black theater community for serious change and boundless opportunity.​

THE NEW BLACK FEST is a gathering of artists, thinkers, activists and audiences who are dedicated to stretching, interrogating and uplifting the Black aesthetic.

​THE NEW BLACK FEST is a commitment to celebrate, advocate and showcase diverse and provocative work in a festival of Black theater artists from throughout the Diaspora.  It is a convening of visionaries who are determined to reintroduce the way black theater is perceived, who are ready to chart out resolutions and promote action through panel discussions, workshops, and putting both artists and community members on the hot seat.

THE NEW BLACK FEST is for everyone and anyone who supports elevating and celebrating Black theater around the world, in a fresh way.




Artistic Director


Keith Josef Adkins is a playwright, screenwriter and artistic director. His Great Migration play, The West End, had its world premiere in October at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park and was a finalist for the 2022 Steinberg-ATCA New Play Award. Keith's other plays include The People Before the Park, Safe House, Pitbulls, the Last Saint on Sugar Hill, among others. His plays have been produced Off-Broadway and regionally. Keith's the recipient of the Helen Merrill Playwriting Award, Samuel French's Award for Impact and Activism in the Theater Community as well as National Black Theater's Teer Spirit Award. He is also the artistic director of The New Black Fest, a 12-year-old theater organization committed to fostering insurgent voices from the African Diaspora. The New Black Fest was in residence at the Lark Play Development Center for six years and has commissioned three social justice anthologies, including Facing Our Truth and Hands Up -- both published by Samuel French/Concord Theatrical and produced all over the country. Hands Up was also presented as a radio play for the BBC in London. A recent Black Seed grant recipient, Keith was commissioned by the Apollo Theater to help program their inaugural season at their new Victoria Theater. Keith’s TV writing credits include P-Valley on Starz, Netflix's Outer Banks, ABC's For The People, The Good Fight on CBS. He's currently writing on a new series about pre-colonial Africa for Lionsgate and developing TV projects with JJ Abrams' Bad Robot, and with Don Cheadle/Steven Soderbergh for HBO Max. Keith’s feature film with Gamechanger Films/Blumhouse will drop on Halloween by Amazon. 


​​J. Holtham

Jocelyn Prince
Keith Josef Adkins
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