Yvonne Farrow and Yvette Heyliger of Twinbiz
Yvonne Farrow and Yvette Heyliger of Twinbiz (featured in last week’s issue), have been selected to receive the inaugural National Black Theatre Festival Emerging Producer Award in North Carolina in August 2011.
The New York Times has said that the National Black Theatre Festival is “one of the most historic and culturally significant events, not only to Black Theater in general, but American Theatre as a whole.” The Twins are proud to be honored at the prestigious festival whose theme this year is An International Celebration and Reunion of Spirit.
The National Black Theatre Festival showcases outstanding Black Theatre from around the nation. They have presented four of Twinbiz’ productions, three written and directed by Heyliger, two of which had their premiers here in Los Angeles at the Hollywood Court Theatre: What Would Jesus Do? and Autobiography of A Homegirl, both starring Farrow.
Twinbiz’ production of Hillary and Monica: The Winter of Her Discontent, had its premier in New York and went on to Gloucester Stage Company after being presented in the NBTF. The forth presentation was a film by Farrow, I’d Rather Be Dancing, based on her one-act play, made with a grant won from ABC Talent Development. Twinbiz gives back to the festival by offering play readings and educational workshops for the visiting theatrical community.
So what’s next for Twinbiz’? A Theatre Mission for Peace! Code Name: Operation Lysistrata!, Heyliger’s newest play, answers the call. It has been selected for Planet Connection Theatre Festivity, the premiere eco-friendly green festival in New York City, playing for a limited run in June. Code Name: Operation Lysistrata! is an anti-war comedy inspired by Aristophanes’ Lysistrata.
It takes place in 2002 before Congress voted to go to war, and stars the wives of the architects of the impending war in Iraq. That’s right, Laura Bush, Lynne Cheney, Alma Powell (played by Farrow who will also choralograph the finale; Choralography is singing with movement), Cherie Blair and friends. Code Name: Operation Lysistrata! captures Aristophanes’ strong anti-war message, laced in bawdy humor and the power of women to bring about change.
“Theatre with a cause,” is the heart of The Planet Connections Theatre Festivity, a group of like-minded theatre artists striving to create professional, meaningful theatre, while supporting organizations which give back to the community. Heyliger recognized immediately that this festival is compatible with Twinbiz’ growing theatre ministry.
Already a pen-pal to a soldier in Afghanistan through the AdoptaPlatoon Soldier Support Effort®, Twinbiz will support this volunteer-based nonprofit during the month-long festival. AdoptaPlatoon provides a better deployment quality of life to United States Service Men and Women by sending cards, letters and care packages to lift the morale of troops as they serve far from home, ensuring they are not forgotten by a grateful nation.
Code Name: Operation Lysistrata! is being presented just a few months prior to the tenth anniversary of September 11th and the first anniversary of the End of the War in Iraq and is dedicated to the memory of all the fallen in Iraq-both military and civilian.
To participate in Twinbiz’ Theatre Mission for Peace, email firstname.lastname@example.org.