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CSUEB Theatre-Dance department, African-American Shakespeare company team up for 'Xtigone'


Ray Holston, III, left, Janelle Aguirre and Bradford Barnes perform in"'Xtigone," coming to CSUEB stage in mid-November. (Photo: Aldrin Bulayo)

  • October 26, 2010

“Xtigone,” a contemporary, lyrical reimagining based on Sophocles' “Antigone” developed by Cal State East Bay and the African-American Shakespeare Company of San Francisco, will be performed  at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Nov. 12-13 and 19-20, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 21.

It will take place in the University Theatre, on CSUEB's Hayward Campus, 25800 Carlos Bee Blvd.

Written by Nambi E. Kelley, a contemporary playwright, and directed by Darryl V. Jones, CSUEB associate professor of theatre and dance, it features music created and directed by Tommy Shepherd, who is an actor, playwright, rapper, drummer and educator based in San Francisco.

Set in the urban streets of Chicago, the production will incorporate the various musical styles of rap, conga, progressive jazz, blues, spoken word, ring-shout, and reggae-infused text, with spirited dancing to illustrate the reasons for and consequences of gang wars, street violence and premature death.

“This powerfully moving story honors the mothers who have lost their sons to the streets too soon and questions when the violence will be put to a stop,” said Jones.

He calls the piece a "choreo-poem" for the way, like African tradition of daily life, music, dance, storytelling and spirituality, are one. 

Jones and the Shakespeare company will continue to work on the show over the next 12 months, concluding with Jones directing the show in San Francisco next year. Jones’ dream is for the play to be seen all over the country.

The CSUEB artistic team includes Laura Elaine Ellis, choreographer; Regina Cate, in charge of set and costumes; and Richard Olmsted, lights.

Tickets are $15 general admission; $10 for youth (3-18), seniors (55+), and alumni; and $5 for CSUEB students. Tickets may be purchased as of early-November at the University Bookstore, reserved online at or by telephone at (510) 885-3118.

Campus parking is $2 per hour at meters, or $5 per day, per vehicle from 5 p.m. Friday to midnight on Sunday, and is payable at kiosk machines that accept dollar bills and quarters. 

CSUEB welcomes persons with disabilities and will provide reasonable accommodation upon request. Please notify event the sponsor in advance at (510) 885-3118 if accommodation is needed.

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