“A people without knowledge of their history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.”

 Marcus Garvey

Our Mission

Established in the fall 2016 by D. Amy-Rose Forbes-Erickson, the Pan-African Theatre Ensemble is a community-based, practice-led, theatre practice-as-research project for pedagogy, scholarship, and for directing inspiring theatre seasons, curated from a repertoire of plays from Africa, U.S.A., Canada, England, Latin America and the Caribbean. Theatre practice-as-research (PaR) refers to creative practices as key research methodologies, and includes theatre/performance as substantial evidence of research inquiry (Nelson 9). The primary mission of the Pan-African Theatre Ensemble is to promote Black theatre in the United States and around the world and to locate a Pan-African aesthetic. Pan-Africanism is a concept and principle of unity among Africans on the continent of Africa and people of African descent worldwide who share in the traumatic history of trans-Atlantic slavery and scattering of African peoples throughout the world. The Pan-African Theatre Ensemble is the first company of its kind anywhere - dedicated to Black theatre from everywhere. The goal of the Pan-African Theatre Ensemble is to produce engaging, inspiring, experimental, and eclectic theatre and performance styles from the Pan-African world, including the continent of Africa, the United States, the Caribbean, Latin America, and Europe. The Pan-African Theatre Ensemble extends Efua Sutherland’s vision for Pan-African cultural activism with the Pan-African Historical Theatre Festival (PANAFEST) Biennial in Ghana, uniting emerging and established theatre and performance by Africans on the continent and peoples of African descent.

Pan-African Theatre Ensemble -Community-based, Theatre Practice-as-Research Project

The Pan-African Theatre Ensemble is a tcommunity-based, practice-led, heatre practice-as-research group for with Pan-African theatre aesthetics and sensibilities, open to community volunteers, interested in participating in theatre research, and to anyone committed to Black theatres.

The Pan-African Theatre Ensemble incorporates new media and technologies with elements of performance art, installations, video, digital works in theatre for cultural activism – African, African-descent, Indigenous, and Middle Eastern cultures and peoples.

The Pan-African Theatre Ensemble for pedagogy, scholarship, and for directing theatre seasons, curated from a repertoire of plays from Africa, U.S.A., Canada, England, Latin America and the Caribbean.


Our Vision

The Pan-African Theatre Ensemble’s vision is:

  • To be an African-aesthetic community-based collective and ensemble in Black communities.

  • To produce a repertoire of emerging and canonical theatre from Africa and the Pan-African world, including the United States, Caribbean, Latin America, North America and Europe.

  • To experiment with a rich reservoir of Pan-African theatre and performance forms to create new methods – music and mime, physical theatre, storytelling, ethnographic folk, and other African, African American, and Caribbean forms

  • To promote innovation and creativity in the use of space, performance styles, design, and directorial methods

  • To encourage open membership to all people regardless of race, gender, sexuality, nationality, disability, and others.

  • To collaborate with local and regional artists and communities to produce theatre and performance

  • To promote civic engagement and social justice issues of gender, race, sexuality, and nationality through a selection of plays and performances.

  • To explore a variety of Black expressions in non-Western and Western performance styles

Our Mandate

  • The Pan-African Theatre Ensemble’s mandate is:

  • To be for, by, about and within Black communities with African aesthetics and spiritually grounded. 

  • To produce inspiring annual theatre seasons with Pan-African themes through theatre

  • To forge links with African and African Diasporic theatre companies for traditional folk, experimental performance styles, and contemporary works using Western and non-Western forms

  • To participate in national and international theatre festivals, including PANAFEST (Pan-African Historical Theatre Project), Carifesta (Caribbean Music and Arts Festival), Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and others.

  • To promote volunteerism in the Pan-African Theatre Ensemble for community building

  • To encourage and promote emerging talents in the field.

  • To provide opportunities and outlets for all, and especially for under-represented theatre artists in all areas of theatre production.

  • To educate and empower audiences and communities

  • To promote the role of theatre in community, society and the world

© 2016  by The PATE - The Pan-African Theatre Ensemble.

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