New Omaha Performing Arts series will highlight diverse cultures, social justice | Arts and Theatre

Emilee Geist

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Omaha Performing Arts is launching an initiative that will highlight artists in diverse cultures and their work in social justice.

Voices Amplified will elevate artists in live music, dance and spoken word. It will include panel discussions by local and national artists and community partners on food, health #BlackVoicesMatter and more.

In its first season, the series will partner with performing artists who reflect on Black history and racial equality to amplify Black voices and stories and encourage community dialogue.

The program is being coordinated by Gennean Scott, Omaha Performing Arts’ vice president of human capital and inclusion, and Andy Cassano, vice president of programming and education.

A 10-member committee of educators, artists and Omaha Performing Arts staff is overseeing the effort. In addition to Scott and Cassano, members are Raydell Cordell III, Aaron Gregory, Bill Grennan, Dara Hogan, Matt Mason, Jade Rogers and Kathy Tyree.

Events in the season include:

Oct. 25: August Wilson’s “Fences” — how the themes still matter today. A virtual panel discussion featuring local actors Cordell, Tyree, John Beasley and Tyrone Beasley. Playwright Wilson chronicled 20th-century Black American life and won a Pulitzer Prize for “Fences” in 1983.

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