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So Soul San Francisco: Blackbirds Boogie & other gumbo grooves

  • Brava Theater Center 2781 24th Street San Francisco, CA, 94110 United States (map)

Brava! For Women in the Arts, Black Artists Contemporary Cultural Experience present
So Soul San Francisco: Blackbirds Boogie & other gumbo grooves

A Black Art Salon 

July 18-August 9, 2015
curated & hosted by Edris Cooper-Anifowoshe & Marvin K. White
Friday & Saturday, 8pm; Sunday 5pm 

So Soul San Francisco: Blackbirds Boogie & other gumbo grooves is a Black Art Salon that celebrates the extraordinary work of the late great queer poet and writer, Wayne Corbitt, arguably the most influential and prolific Black Gay artist to come out of San Francisco.
Marvin K. White leads local performers in a performance tribute w/ readings of Wayne's work, including Crying Holy and original songs, poems & rants inspired by Wayne's legacy -  on Sundays food is served.  Each week a new topic and each evening new artists and you!
 Wayne Cobitt is arguably the most influential and  prolific Black Gay artist to come out of San Francisco. He created a series of  performances, volumes of poetry – publised and unpublished, wrote a published and produced full length play and has a collection of his work in the Bancroft Library at UC Berkeley. Wayne’s work was critical in confronting the AIDS crisis at its peak in San Francisco and the Black Gay Rights movement which sought redress from the black community (and in particular, the Black church), as well as from the white gay community,  

Curated & hosted by Edris Cooper Anifowoshe & performance poet, Marvin K. White, So Soul San Francisco: Blackbirds Boogie is modeled in the tradition of the Sugar Shack Performance Gallery of which Wayne was a part and the legendary living room and back room gatherings in Wayne's home, so bring your poetry, your song, the records, the performance, the stories you have saved, the recipes and food you think of, as well as the salacious and low-down dirty tales.  


July 17, 18, 19: Sometimes My Feet Go Numb
Dinner Topic: AIDS
Sunday Menu: Freshly shucked oysters (sponsored by Basa Seafood) and Martinis
Featured Guest Rhodessa Jones & Medea Project, BACCE co-founder, Shirley Smallwood
July 24, 25, 26: Black Bird’s Boogie In The Black Moonlight: Sex, Sex, Magic
Dinner Topic: Sex
Sunday Menu: Gumbo  (sponsored by Brenda’s French Soul Food)
Special Guest: Rotimi Agbabiaka & surprise poets
July 31, Aug 1, 2: Crying Holy
Dinner Topic: Religion, Faith, Family
Sunday Menu: Sunday Soul Food Supper  (sponsored by Buttermilk Southern Kitchen)
Special Guest:  Emerald O’Leary, BACCE Ensemble reads excerpts from Crying Holy
Aug 7, 8, 9: The Gospel According To Wayne
Dinner Topic: Authoring Our Own Paths/Blazing Our Own Trails – Sunday Menu: “Stoned” Soup/ “Pot” Luck (sponsored by Roosevelt’s Tamale Parlor)
Featured Artist:
Fri: award winning poet & musician, Avotcja
Sat & Sun: the extraordinary Blackberri

In his own words – 'Wayne Corbitt is the jaded thirty-nine year old African-American son of a preacher woman.  After traveling with his mother and siblings during summers through high school, he did two years at Indiana University where he flunked out.  Then followed a short stay at the Indiana State Mental Hospital after which he escaped Indiana. Three years of wandering ended in San Francisco. While earning a living as a cook by day, he joined the party in progress by night what a wild party it was – sex, drugs and sleaze with no apologies.  The onslaught of AIDS changed things.  Those changes served as a catalyst for much of the poetry written since.” Published work includes Black Men, White Men and “Interview with a Black Homosexual Masochist”, a self-interview prose piece.  With an AIDS diagnosis, and potentially limited time, he chose to concentrate on performance.'  
He performed his work “Blackbirds Boogie in the Black Moonlight” at the Alice B Gay and Lesbian Theater Festival in Seattle, Washington at Josie’s Cabaret and Juice Joint, New Langton Arts, and at A Different Light and Modern Times bookstores.  Wayne performed  “The Gospel According To Wayne” an evolving contemporary sermon created in the gospel tradition of call and response at The Marsh in San Francisco for a lengthy run He appears in the Marc Heustis acclaimed film, Sex Is..... and in 1992, he was invited to read at the 1992 OUT/Write conference in Boston, Massachusetts.  In 1993, Wayne came to the Sugar Shack with  his first full-length play, Crying Holy.  Crying Holy had its world premiere at Theatre Rhincoeros, directed by Edris Cooper-Anifowoshe  and is published in the anthology, Colored Contradictions, edited by local playwright, Robert Alexander and  Dr. Harry Elam of Stanford University. His solo performance, Basquiat,  was produced at Lorraine Hansberry Theatre in 1994. 
Marvin K. White
Marvin K. White is a Masters of Divinity student at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, CA. He is also the pastoral intern at the historic Glide Memorial Church in San Francisco. He is the author of four collections of poetry published by RedBone Press; Our Name Be Witness, Status and the two Lambda Literary Award-nominated collections of poetry last rights and nothin’ ugly fly. He is the coeditor of If We Have to Take Tomorrow: HIV, Black Men & Same Sex Desire. His poetry has been widely anthologized in local and national publications and adapted for stage at San Francisco’s Theater Rhinoceros as well as Yerba Buena Center for the Arts as a part of their 2014 BAN7 Festival. He is preacher and a community arts organizer. White holds a fellowship in the national African-American poetry organization, Cave Canem; has sat on the board of Fire & Ink, a national black LGBT writer’s organization; and is an ex-member of the critically acclaimed PomoAfroHomos where he performed nationally and internationally. As a Teaching Artist he has led creative arts and writing workshops for WritersCorps as well as for a range of audiences, from youth centers for runaway kids to black gay support groups.
Black Artists Contemporary Cultural Experience (BACCE) & Edris Cooper-Anifowoshe
Edris Cooper-Anifowoshe founded BACCE in 2002 with Lester Jones and a company of actors including June Lomena, Michael Carreiro, Peter Macon, Rico Anderson and Tanya Mayo, to produce new plays by, for and about Black people. The company has produced and presented work by Keith Josef Adkins, Pearl Cleage, Robert Alexander and Robert O’Hara. After a 10-year hiatus, BACCE returned last year with the critically successful Bay Area premiere of A. Zell Williams’ In A Daughter’s Eyes at Brava Theater Center where it is now a resident company. Current company members include Brit Frazier, Algiin Ford, Kehinde Koyejo, AeJay Mitchell and David Skillman. The company recently presented a staged reading of Facing Our Truths – a New Black Fest commission of six short plays on the shooting of Trayvon Martin that was part of a national project.  So Soul San Francisco is the part of a larger project, The Oneness of Blackness, which seeks to document the contribution of Black artists in San Francisco. The Oneness of Blackness includes performances, installations and an interactive website that documents the artistic history of Black San Francisco. Commissioned through the San Francisco Arts Commission Individual Artists Grant, Oneness seeks to redress the disappearing Black community and its artists through economic and cultural displacement.
This project is supported by funding from Brava! for Women in the Arts, the Zellerbach Family Foundation and the San Francisco Arts Commission.