UJIMA THEATRE COMPANY ■ MEDIA KIT 2011 ■
Laura Milton - REYNOLDSBURG, OH
“Great and informative web-site. Keep up the good work!!!!!” Crystal Hall-Boyce - COLUMBUS, OH
“The Ujima Theatre's production of "One Mo Christmas" was highly entertaining, well-executed and musically inspiring.” Matthew Russo—COLUMBUS, OH
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“Victor is my friend and neighbor. I think he must have been born with drumsticks in his hand! He is the drummer of drummers! Ujima, you have a winner in Victor! I cannot wait to see what this year holds for Ujima!”
RON PITTS, CEO Ron Pitts is founder and Chief Executive Officer of Ujima Theatre. His acting career began somewhat unexpectedly when he stepped in to read for a part in August Wilson's Fences, directed by Wilson, Originally from Pittsburgh, Ron made his Columbus acting debut as Martin in Pittsburgh's Kuntu Repertoire Theatre's 1989 production of The Meeting. His other stage credits include The River Niger, Loraine Hansberry's To Be Young Gifted and Black, August Wilson's Jitney, and the original Black Nativity by Langston Hughes, and Columbus's own annual version of Black Nativity. Ron also has several screen credits, including Dawn of the Dead, Emergency, and television commercials. Since bringing Ujima to Columbus, Ron has directed Black Nativity, Long Time Since Yesterday, Good Black Don’t Crack, August Wilson’s Jitney, Love and Street Corner Harmony, The Meeting, August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Master Harold and The Boys and co-authored God What Color is Trouble, with Raymond Wise and One Mo Christmas. Ron has been a schoolteacher and retains an interest in education and personal development of young people.
VICTOR ROSS, Percussionist/Music Department Director Victor is an accomplished musician who has taken the words of David to heart - he praises God through his gift as a percussionist. Victor began playing the drums in 1968 under the direction of Keith Ransom of Elyria, Ohio. Since that time, his talents have taken him to Broadway and all around the country. He has performed in a number of musicals, including: Sing Hallelujah, Dust Yourself Off and Try Again and Preacherman, which was performed in Indianapolis, Indiana; Charlotte, North Carolina and Cincinnati, Ohio. Victor has also been a percussionist for such noted gospel as Dr. Marvin Sapp, Donald Lawrence, Timothy Wright and Rodney Posey, to name a few. Currently, Victor is a staff musician at Triedstone Baptist Church under the leadership of Bishop Jerome H. Ross, Sr. located in Columbus, Ohio. He is always ready and willing to use his gift to enhance any worship experience and to uplift and magnify the name of the Lord. ROSIA EDWARDS LANE became the Makeup Artist for Ujima Theatre Company’s (Black Nativity
ROSIA EDWARDS LANE
for three years), What Color is Trouble, Ma Rainey and Love and Street Corner Harmony which led to a position with Ellis Production. She has traveled all over the US as the Makeup Artist for You Don’t Know What The Lord Told Me, later to become an actress for If Loving You is Wrong, the Technical Director/ Stage Manager for plays, Lord Please send me a Real Woman, Why You All Up in My Business and Mama I Didn’t Mean to Hurt You. Other productions locally include Somebody Tell Them Jesus Saves, How Much is Your Testimony Worth, and served as part time Stage Manager for Comedian Andrew Ford. Rosia also started a program entitled Focus on You a self improvement course which include guidelines for taking care of your body, good-grooming, fashion, color coordinating and etiquette. A 33 year member of Triedstone Baptist Church , she serves as the Membership Clerk, a member of the Deconess Board, the Voices of Triedstone, Mass Choir and an Advisor in the Children’s Department. Outside affiliates include The Gospel Music Workshop of America serving as one of the Assistant Chapter Representatives and a former member of the Columbus Symphony Choir. Her hobbies includes commentating for fashion shows, interior decorating, wedding coordinating and special events decorating.
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WHO’S WHO CONTINUED
MICHELLE SCOTT REED, Administrative & Ticketing Michelle a native of Columbus, Ohio is the mask behind many faces providing assistance where needed within the Ujima Theatre Company. She brings her corporate business skills to empower Ujima to be the best at what they do.
DEREK PAYNE, Website and Graphic Design, is originally from Baton Rouge, LA. He has been an actor, singer and dancer with Ujima Theatre Company since 2003. He has been responsible for the website design, along with flyers, playbills and marketing material since 2004. Derek also helps promote Ujima throughout the country in magazines and other media outlets through his graphics company, DPI Graphic Design. He has an architecture and engineering background, combined with owning a karaoke and mobile dj business. His website design has afforded Ujima the opportunity to be recognized amongst some of the top theatre companies in Ohio and across the country. He is an original member of the cast of Love and Street Corner Harmony and also performed in One Mo Christmas.
ARTRA EDWARDS, Dance Choreographer Artra began her career in entertainment as a dancer MICHELLE SCOTT REED DEREK PAYNE
for Ujima Theatre Company from which she formed her own dance troupe, The Ujima Dancers. After performing in Black Nativity ‘91 and What Color Is Trouble ‘92, she joined a hip-hop group named S.A.R. dancing for noted singer Tavarus, T-Tone and The Step II Team in Hair Wars 99 and Spoiled Rott’n Hair and Nail Design Team in Hair Wars 2002 in Oakland, California. This has afforded her the opportunity to open shows for 112, Dave Hollister, Goodie Mob, Beanie Segal, The Lox,, Master P, Too Short and Hezekiah Walker to name a few. Joining Ellis Production as a pit singer, she later starred in Leora Turner’s hit gospel National Touring plays If Loving You Is Wrong I Don’t want t be Right, Why You All Up In My Business and currently in I Didn’t Mean To Hurt You. She has worked with noted singers LeLee Lyons and Tamara “Taj” Johnson of SWV, Rev. Timothy Wright, Leonard Williams of The Williams Brothers, Anthony Watson of The ChiLites, Cherelle and Mickey Howard. Artra has also sung 2 years in the Gospel Meets Symphony Choir, tried out for P-Diddy’s Da Band , America Idol and Pepsi Give Me The Mike Challnge and currently sings with The Columbus Chapter of GMWA. This multi-talented choreographer aspires to soar to higher levels spiritually, professionally and socially. Currently a stylist at Chazon Grand Salon and a Platform Artist for many models and modeling agencies, her work can be seen in many publications along with Stephanie Photography traveling all over the US. Her motto is, “It doesn’t matter how you start out, but how you end up.”
CARINA PRATER is currently a student at the Ohio State University majoring in theater. She is no stranger to the theatre, having performed in several high school plays and church skits. Her goal is to obtain a position in the arts and entertainment field. During her freshman year at O.S.U. she performed and was stage manager in Baby with the Bathwater. Carina has also starred in an independent film, Acting Like God. She recently appeared in Francine Marchelle's A Trip to God's House, Darlene Carson's Saints and A'ints, and Carol William's The Monkey on my Back. Her Ujima Theatre Company acting credits include Gem of the Ocean, Love and Street Corner Harmony and One Mo Christmas. She thanks Ron Pitts for the opportunity to perform with Ujima. Carina thanks God, the head of her life, her father and mother, Ronald and Denise, and her sister Marlena.
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WHO’S WHO CONTINUED
MERNA WATSON PITTS, Planning Committee, Merna is responsible for the coordination of all Ujima Theatre plays. She also assists in the successful implementation and works closely with the CEO and the staff. Merna determines necessary marketing of Ujima’s plays for promotional activity including flyers, posters, newsletters and related collateral material. She assists in coordinating and managing vendor activities and ensure the timely development and delivery of marketing materials, negotiate with venues regarding pricing and process all incoming departmental invoices for accurate and timely payment scheduling appointments. THERESA YOUNG, Fundraising, is no stranger to theater in Columbus, Ohio. She has been facili-
BENNIE COLQUITT Bennie has been doing comedy for over 10 years and has opened up for many big names such as Gerald LeVert, Frankie Beverly & Maze, and Anthony Hamilton to name a few. Bennie's model is; to provide clean comedy in a relaxed atmosphere sharing stories and the word with a bit of humor. Bennie has performed in a vast array of arenas all over Ohio and surrounding states. He is sure to lift your hearts and spirits and to help you forget about your problems for at least an hour. One day Bennie wants to own his own Television Network, and that's how he received his nick name "Big Benn" which stands for: Being In God Broadcasting Entertainment & News Network. “Big Benn” made his acting debut with Ujima in 2010 portraying several characters in Ujima’s Love and Street Corner Harmony.
“I was amazed at the production of One Mo Christmas. The acting and singing was excellent. Keep up the good work!” Stephanie R. - COLUMBUS, OH
“I was impressed with the level of talent and professionalism from all in the production. Ujima is a wonderful and important addition to the Arts community in Columbus.” Tom Ciancetta - STEUBENVILLE, OH
“My husband and I consumed your Love & Street Corner Harmony. It took my breath away. The positive messages it brought to the stage reminded me of when I was a girl so much especially those skirts with the poodle...I am so very glad that Love conquers all Mr. Pitts because without it we all would perish. Thank you and everyone who had any part in the presentation of this rare gift.” Mable Woods-Dukes - COLUMBUS, OH
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tating and participating with theaters and the arts over two decades and continues to support the arts by establishing and overseeing fundraising for Ujima Theatre Company. Her duties have ranged from props manager, lighting and sound operator, costume manager to stage manager. She brings her warm personality and ability to “get things done” attitude to Ujima. Because of her long standing involvement in theater in Columbus, Theresa has earned the respect from the various venues that Ujima continues to utilize.
Ujima Theatre plans to tour in 2011 and 2012 with their productions of Love and Street Corner Harmony, The Meeting, What Color is Trouble, Long Time Since Yesterday and an all new addition of Fences.
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■ Long Time Since Yesterday: Five sorority sisters reunite 17 years after college for the
funeral of one of their classmates. The women confront the truth about their own lives, private struggles, emotional scars hidden all of their lives, and painful memories of childhood emotional traumas that have led to their success. Laughter rolls, tempers flare and guilt is served in this humorous, yet sensitive and painful look at contemporary women as they struggle with their emotional wounds to meet the demands of the times.
■ Fences: August Wilson’s searing family drama, “Fences,” is set in 1957. Troy Maxson is a survivor of disappointments, a forlorn childhood, homelessness, a 17-year jail stint beginning when he was 15 and short-lived glory as a ballplayer in the Negro Leagues. Now, he lives and works as a garbage collector in Pittsburgh, is married and raising a teen who dreams of a college football scholarship. Father and son clash over that ambition while husband and wife weather their own discord.
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www.ujimatheatre.com International website for Ujima Theatre Company DESIGNED AND MAINTAINED BY DPI GRAPHIC DESIGN, COLUMBUS, OHIO
“Great web site! I believe Love and Street Corner Harmony will fly well in Alabama, let's bring it on.” Anthony Orum - Birmingham, AL TOGETHER BUILDING STRONG RELATIONSHIPS
TRENDSETTERS TO TRENDSETTERS MAGAZINE
“Your website is awesome. Since I am intereseted in being a part of Ujima, I visit the web site often to learn as much as I can and to keep me excited about being a possible member of the theater group. You really did an excellent job with the web site.” William Benson - COLUMBUS, OH
CONTRIBUTING PRINT, & INTERNET SPONSORS
I'm excited about Ujima. LOVE your web site and I am looking forward to seeing this production when it comes to Pittsburgh. Ron, I'm glad I met you! Donna Payne—PITTSBURGH, PA
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Read about upcoming productions View current and upcoming season Biographical History Mission, Goal and Objectives Opt-in Mailing List Auditions Guestbook Photo & Video Gallery Press Releases Community Outreach Meet the Staff and Cast Members Memberships, Sponsor & Donation Opportunities Volunteer Opportunities Advertising Opportunities
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