Blackberry Productions Founders Stephanie Berry and Dr. John-Martin Green and New Professional Theatre Founder Sheila Kay Davis have partnered on a theater project that will illuminate critical issues in our communities. Our project is a two-year intervention strategy that involves members of the NYPD and youth, it is designed to build trust and facilitate reconciliation. We established a relationship with former NYPD Chief of Community Affairs Jeffrey B. Maddrey and Deputy Inspector Victoria Perry. We will conduct facilitated Interactive Workshops with members of the NYPD and youth. The workshops and individual interviews with members of the NYPD and youth will serve as the basis for the creation of a theatre piece. The script is now ready and we will present it on June 17th, 2022 at Aaron Davis Hall. The show is funded by THE THOMPSON FAMILY FOUNDATION.
Blackberry Productions Founder
Stephanie is the proud recipient of The League of Professional Theatre Women’s 2021 Lee Reynolds Award given to an actress whose work has impacted social and political change. Stephanie and a several other artists founded Blackberry Productions Theater Company in response to how black people were typically
portrayed on television and film. They were committed to take control of their own narrative. Blackberry’s mission has expanded over the years to include the stories of marginalized voices in our communities who had a story to tell. A Harlem-based documentary theater company, Blackberry’s has brought theater and workshops to schools, shelters, prisons, hospitals, and the streets all over the city and has created over 2 dozen original productions, Stephanie’s recent stage credits include FRANKENSTEIN at the Classic Stage Company, for all the women who thought they were Mad at Soho Repertory Theatre and GLORIA: A LIFE at the Daryl Roth Theatre. Last season, she was nominated for a 2019 Lucille Lortel and Outer Critics Award for Best Featured Actress for her role in Suga In Our Wounds at Manhattan Theatre Club and a Helen Hayes Award for Best Lead Actress for her role in Gem of the Ocean at the Round House Theater. Film and TV credits include Before You Know It, O.G., Delivery Man, Invasion, No Reservations and Finding Forrester, Luke Cage, The Last OG, Bull, Blue Bloods, Blacklist, and all the Law-and-Order Shows. Stephanie is the recipient of an OBIE and an AUDELCO Award for her one-woman show, THE SHANEEQUA CHRONICLES. She is also a recipient of the TCG/Fox Foundation Fellowship.
DR. JOHN-MARTIN GREEN
Blackberry Productions Founder
As Co-Founder and Co-Artistic Director of Blackberry Productions Documentary Theatre
Company, John-Martin uses theater as a healing modality, developing and producing theater
works that shed light on issues impacting our communities, and creates forums for a multiplicity
of voices and perspectives in solution-focused reflection. Dr. Green is also Founder and Director of The Gatekeeper's Collective (TGC), a resiliency enhancement network of same gender loving (SGL) African descended men which works to facilitate identity reformation, empowerment, health promotion and wellness. He currently teaches Community Health, Interpersonal Relations and Nutrition at Hostos Community College, of the City University of New York, and has taught theatre at New School
University, Brooklyn College, and SUNY campuses at Old Westbury and Nassau Community College.
SHEILA KAY DAVIS
New Professional Theatre Founder
SHEILA KAY DAVIS is a force in the New York City Theatre scene, working as an actress, producer, artistic director, and educator. After graduating from Spelman College in Atlanta, she moved to New York City. Shortly thereafter, she was cast in the now classic show LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS and originated the role of Ronette. She is featured on the Grammy nominated cast album and remained in the show for five years. In the years following, Sheila originated the role of Mrs. Jefferson in the hit show RENT. She was the first person to sing the now classic "Seasons of Love". Sheila has appeared in guest starring roles on television and in film. She has also done many major television advertising campaigns, regional theatres and daytime dramas.
Sheila is the Founder/Artistic Director of the New Professional Theatre (NPT), a theatre company located in New 42nd St. Studios in Times Square. NPT is dedicated to developing African American playwrights, and has produced Off Broadway union productions at the Duke Theatre on 42nd St., supported over 500 playwrights with cash grants, literary management, and staged readings. Sheila also launched innovative performing arts Education programs for K-12 public school students in New York City and Westchester County. Sheila has created programming and lectured at New York University, Miami Dade University and Bethune Cookman University. She is the recipient of the Spelman College Alumnae Achievement Award for Arts & Media, the Arts Leadership Award from the Coalition of 100 Black/Asian/Latino women at the World of Women Leaders Conference and the Shining Star Award from the NY Chapter of the Spelman College Alumnae.