(CNS Local Life): The Cayman National Cultural Foundation (CNCF) is staging Stogie Kenyatta in his one-man show, The World is My Home – The Life of Paul Robeson, for three nights the end of this month. The award-winning production chronicles the life and work of Robeson, a singer, actor, athlete and activist who became famous both for his cultural accomplishments and his political activism.
Described as the top one-man show in the US, Caribbean and Central America, it is written and performed by African-American actor Kenyatta, stated a CNCF press release. Supported by the Ministry of Culture, the production is being put on in celebration of the United Nations’ International Decade for People of African Descent (2015–2024).
The three shows for the general public are set for the Harquail Theatre 29-31 March, with three private performances for high school students 2 and 3 April. The show is the final event on the 2019 Cayfest calendar.
Jamaican-born and Brooklyn-bred, Kenyatta was classically trained at the Afro American Studio in Harlem, Henry Street Settlement and Al Fann Theatrical Ensemble, and also studied screenwriting and political science at the University of California, the release said. He won Best One-Person Show at the 2013 NAACP Theatre Awards for The World is My Home. He has numerous television credits from sitcoms, film and soap operas.
In his portrayal of Robeson, Kenyatta takes on 14 different characters as he brings the audience along a chronological journey of the life of “history’s first black Renaissance Man”, the release said.
The show covers the Harlem Renaissance with music from Duke Ellington, John Coltrane, Louie Armstrong, Fats Waller, Cab Calloway, Harry Belafonte and Paul Robeson himself and also highlights Robeson’s friendships with legendary figures such as Albert Einstein, W.E. Dubois and Langston Hughes.
Robeson (1898-1976) was a bass baritone concert artist and stage and film actor who is perhaps best known for his rendition of the song “Ol’ Man River” in the musical Show Boat.
“CNCF is thrilled and honoured to bring this critically acclaimed show to the Cayman Islands,” said CNCF artistic director Henry Muttoo. “This is a significant coup for us. The Life Of Paul Robeson is an entertaining, laugh-out loud, music-filled show that still manages to touch on such serious, timeless and relevant topics as diversity, compassion and social justice.
“The life and legacy of this extraordinary human being as portrayed by Stogie Kenyatta will awaken, enlighten and uplift the spirits of everyone who has the privilege of experiencing this performance. I hope the public will take advantage of this unique opportunity to be educated and challenged to think about our common humanity.”
Tickets are $20 for adults and $15 for seniors, and can be purchased at Funky Tang’s, Foster’s Food Fair (Airport and Strand locations), Healthcare Pharmacy Grand Harbour and the CNCF office.
For more information call 949-5477 or go to the CNCF website