Season 9 Is Here! Face Off Theatre Company is thrilled to present our 2024 season, a powerful lineup of shows that delve deep into the theme of identity. At our theatre company, we believe that exploring and celebrating one's identity is a transformative and empowering experience. Through these vibrant and immersive productions, we aim to provide a platform for artists of color to share their stories, while also engaging and inspiring our diverse community.
From poignant dramas that highlight the importance of preserving and honoring our individual and collective identities (Goodnight Tyler, Crumbs from the Table of Joy), to a taught social and political comedy exploring modern relationships (Smart People), to a coming-of-age story about a young girl growing up in the Civil Rights era (Northstar), to a joyous musical that pays homage to the cultural heritage of our artists in partnership with Uplift Kalamazoo (Ain’t Misbehavin’), to a World Premiere from founding company member Kendra Ann Flournoy about a young woman who is forced to face what she’s been running from (Bambiland), each production will offer a unique and captivating exploration of what it means to belong.
Perhaps you'll see facets of your own identity in the characters on our stage this season.
At FOTC we are committed to fostering a space that empowers and supports artists of color, providing them with a platform to share their unique voices and perspectives. Through our 2024 season, we hope to inspire dialogue, spark change, and create meaningful connections.
We continue the work of bringing Black and female-identifying playwrights and their stories to the Kalamazoo Community. Black Theatre is crucial for cultural representation, promoting diversity, inclusivity, and social change. It provides a platform for the Kalamazoo area’s Black voices to be heard, and for our audiences to gain a deeper appreciation of the Black experience.
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Set in North Carolina in the 1960s, North Star is the story of Relia, a Black girl, searching for her place to shine in both society and her personal life.
The joyous innocence of Relia's summer is transformed by the rising tensions of the growing civil rights movement. Relia's parents are hotly divided between letting her participate in the demonstrations and shielding her from the harsh realities of the civil rights struggle and their community's battle for freedom.
Relia's memories of magical moments stargazing with her father help guide her as she risks her life to be a part of the "Dream" and the "Big Freedom."
"Strong poetic streak, appealing characters ... and a sense of humor." -Chicago Sun-Times
Performances April 19 - 27, 2024 The Jolliffe Theatre @ The Epic Center Kalamazoo, Michigan
Welcome to the Renaissance. The Harlem Renaissance. Sassy. Sultry. Sensational!
The Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s and 1930s comes to life in the three-time Tony award-winning musical revue, Ain't Misbehavin’.
Join five performers on a journey through the timeless music of Thomas “Fats” Waller. You’ll be jumpin’ and jivin’ with memorable songs such as “Honeysuckle Rose”, “Ain’t Misbehavin’”, “Black and Blue”, “This Joint is Jumpin’ ” and “I’ve Got a Feeling I’m Falling.”
One of the most popular, well-crafted revues of all time, the sometimes sassy, sometimes sultry, has moments of devastating beauty that is simply unforgettable.
"Ain't Misbehavin'... is like an intoxicating combination of a dry martini and a dirty joke, savored over the sassiest Depression-era jazz." – LA Times
Directed by Ryan Singleton Performances June 14 - 23, 2024 The Jolliffe Theatre @ The Epic Center Kalamazoo, Michigan
Face Off Theatre Company is honored to premiere founding company member Kendra Ann Flournoy’s play on our stage in 2024.
It’s 2019. Nic, a 28-year-old NYC-based journalist, has built her career writing gritty investigative stories. Her editor assigns her a story that could take her career to the next level: overtaxed Detroit homeowners.
To pen the story, she must return home to Detroit after being away for ten years and finds herself facing what she’s been running from.
Performances August 15 - 24, 2023 The Jolliffe Theatre @ The Epic Center Kalamazoo, Michigan
It is the eve of Obama's first election. Four of Harvard University's brightest; a surgeon, an actress, a psychologist, and a neuropsychiatrist, are all interested in different aspects of the brain, particularly how it responds to race.
But like all smart people, they are also searching for love, success, and identity in their own lives. Lydia Diamond brings these characters together in this sharp, witty play about social and sexual politics.
"Splendid! Diamond...draws laughs even as she firmly pushes back against the notion that we’re living in a 'post-racial society.'" - Boston Globe
Performances October 18 - 27, 2024 The Jolliffe Theatre @ The Epic Center Kalamazoo, Michigan
Set against the social politics of the 1950s, this charming, funny, and moving play follows 17-year-old Ernestine Crump as she adjusts to life after the passing of her beloved mother.
The Crump family is adrift and in trouble. In search of spiritual answers, Ernestine’s father relocates the family from Pensacola to Brooklyn where Widowed Godfrey falls under the spell of Sweet Father Divine, while his teen daughters immerse themselves in the illusions of Hollywood to escape racial prejudice. It is here the Crumps must navigate a changing family dynamic, an unwelcoming neighborhood, and a shifting set of American ideals.