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Negro Ensemble Company

No Policy, No Justice

October 20 – 21, 2023
Bruce Montgomery Theatre
PLA Presents

Our 23/24 season artist-in-residence, New York’s esteemed Negro Ensemble Company (NEC), performs the world premiere of two commissioned one-act plays: Breathe by Cynthia Grace Robinson and Elevator Not Necessary by Mona Washington. As part of our season-long focus, the plays will center on the tragedy and trauma of the gun violence epidemic and its disproportionate impact on communities of color. With NEC, “arguably the most successful Black theatre group in the world,” (American Theatre) we seek to elevate these vital conversations and amplify Black voices, stories and perspectives.

Please note, this performance uses prop guns and/or gun sound effects. It also includes mature content and strong language. 

Playwrights Cynthia Grace Robinson and Mona Washington
Director Ralph McCain

Breathe Cast
Imani Carrington Leah Finnie
Kim Wright Kenya Wilson

Elevator Not Necessary Cast
Jerome Milton, Jr. Benjamin Rowe
Karl Milton Alton Ray

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Insights Events

Oct 21:
Stay after the evening performance for a post-show discussion with the playwrights, Cynthia Grace Robinson and Mona Washington, and director Ralph McCain, moderated by Leah Falk, our Director of Education & Engagement.

Artist Information
Program Notes [PDF]

The Negro Ensemble Company’s performances are made possible in part with support provided by the Penn Live Arts Accelerator Program.

Photo credit: Mark Garvin