Love, Locs, and Liberation by Ella Turenne

Comedy · the speakeasy · Ages 5+ · world premiere · one person show · United States of America

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Through the eyes of 21 different characters, including a 5th grade bully and Madam CJ Walker, Ella exposes the hair connection – to politics, identity and culture, illustrating why hair is an intimate and essential part of Black life. Ella Turenne’s World Premiere production weaves together stories of struggles with identity and beauty. From rituals that Black women hold in relation with their hair, to Ella’s experience as an American woman with strong ties to her Haitian culture.

“Being a champion for freedom, justice, and expression, has helped me come to understand how important it is to find your own authenticity. It’s a struggle that all women have, usually around beauty and identity. So, let’s talk about how to take it back for ourselves,” says Ella.

A World Premiere production from Activist-Performer-Poet-Educator Ella Turenne, noted for her TedX talk on Education in the prison system, and her influential work in helping young women to find their authentic self and not just their reflection in today’s beauty trends.

Ella Turenne (Writer/Poet/Actress) published her first book in 2004 entitled revolution|revolisyon|révolution 1804 – 2004: An Artistic Commemoration of the Haitian Revolution (Liv Lakay Publications) and has written for several magazines and newspapers. She has been included in anthologies such as Letters from Young Activists: Today’s Rebels Speak Out (Nation Books) and Check the Rhyme: An Anthology of Female Poets and Emcees, nominated for a 2007 NAACP Image Award. She is currently a blogger for Black Voices on the Huffington Post. Her first short film, woodshed, had its world premiere at the Hollywood Film Festival. woodshed was nominated for Best Short in the Montreal International Black Film Festival. Her play Gray premiered in theHarlem Heritage Fringe Festival in 2009. Ella co-starred in the critically acclaimed web series Kindred, which garnered much media attention and was an official selection of the LA Web Fest. Other acting credits include Love Child at the Harlem Theatre Company, Working Things Out which premiered at the Downtown Urban Theatre Festival, short film Big, Dark, Scary Girl and the upcoming feature film Forever. Ella is a theatre and spoken word artist and has performed all across the country, including the Black Family Channel show Spoken, hosted by Jessica Care Moore.

Kathryn Ervin (Director) is a recipient of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival Outstanding Educator Award and an NAACP Pioneer Award. As a director Kathryn has helmed productions such as The Wiz, Novio Boy, Hamlet: the artist formerly known as prince of Denmark. She guest directed Intimate Apparel at UCR and Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom at Illinois State. Her original production of the hip hop opera Keep Hedz Ringin by Rickerby Hinds was a finalist at the American College Theatre Festival in Utah and presented as part of the NYC Hip Hop Theatre Festival in 2002. In 2010 Kathryn received the Black Theatre Network Lifetime Membership Award recognizing her service to the organization. She is currently the Board Chair of Arts Connection, the Arts Council of San Bernardino County.

Africa Miranda (Producer) has skillfully branded new shows and numerous products. On Bravo TV’s The New Atlanta, she was featured developing her multiple projects, juggling the demands of her growing career and navigating the delicate balance between ambition and success versus love and relationships. She was named the first ever Brand Ambassador for international hair care company Creme of Nature. Having already been the face of their previous Argan Oil from Morocco campaign. As Brand Ambassador she represented the company in various capacities including special appearances, hosting social media chats, and speaking at events and on panels. She’s been featured on Arise TV and also WomensWearDaily.com during New York Fashion Week.

Love, Locs, and Liberation opens at 7:30pm on Tuesday, October 20th (talkback and reception to follow) and continues October 21, 22, 27, 28, and 29 with performances at 7:30pm at The Speakeasy, located in the Atwater Village Theatre complex 3269 Casitas Ave. LA, CA 90039. Tickets: $20 at http://lovelocsliberation.com

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