The African Heritage Cultural Arts Center opens the season with The Mighty Gents,
Richard Wesley’s moving play tells the story of former members of a black youth gang
The Mighty Gents is an arresting and moving play that tells the story of former members of a black youth gang “that had ruled the Central Ward of Newark, NJ having conquered their rivals the Zombies, who are now in their 30s and left only with the recollections of their past successes.” It opened on Broadway in 1978 with cast members Morgan Freeman, Howard Rollins, Jr., Dorian Harewood and Starletta Dupois, now well-known award-winning/nominated actors.
The playwright, Richard Wesley, is also a screenwriter for television and cinema currently serving as an associate professor at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. His popular works include the screenplays for Uptown Saturday Night and Let’s Do It Again. Cue Magazine described him as “This harrowing and unforgettable drama marks the Broadway debut of one of America's finest young playwrights."
The African Heritage Cultural Arts Center, managed by the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs, has a long-standing reputation of providing high caliber art instruction. Students, ages 5 - 16 years old, receive professional instruction in music, dance, drama, and visual arts within a creative and secure environment after school, Saturdays, spring, winter and summer breaks. Distinguished alumni of the African Heritage Cultural Arts Center include Tarell Alvin McCraney, Executive Producer of Moonlight – the 2017 Academy Award-winning Best Picture; Robert Battle, Artistic Director of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater; Bianca Brewton, a professional dancer with the production companies of Janet Jackson and Beyoncé; Shareef Clayton, a Jazz trumpeter, who studied with Arturo Sandoval and performed with Stevie Wonder; and tap dancer Marshall Davis, Jr., associate choreographer of the Tony-nominated play, Shuffle Along.