Words from Shawn…


Thank you to everyone who helped me celebrate my 41st birthday at Fair Hill Baptist Church and the Detroit Princess. As you can see from the above pix, I had a good time surrounded by friends and family (from left to right: producer, Danny Pitts; actress, Niseiki McFerren; actress, Shirley Rayford and actor, Rodney D. Story). Check out my friends Raquel Draper, Rodney D. Story, Sylvia Hubbard, and Octavia Lesley on the midnight cruise. 

WOW!! Another year! 2012!!  Set new goals. Handle your business. Dare to go to the next level.  Aim higher. Reach for the top. Never quit. Work wiser. Please email shawnp_entertainment@yahoo.com, call me at (313) 433-8384 or Facebook me at Shawn P Entertainment for fund-raising opportunities and auditions.

Keep Drama in Your Life,

Shawn P.


Em – born Emily Lewis-Johnson on April 24, 1988, has always been an aspiration to her family. At age 3, when she began to sing, her mother used audio cassettes to record her. Joining the Trinity Memorial Missionary Baptist Church choir at age 6, Emily held the soprano range and was nervous at times but always gave her best. Ten years later, Emily is still singing, but in 2nd soprano-alto range. She also picked up a little acting on the side. Playing the role of Mary, mother of Jesus in a nativity play at Trinity Memorial MBC, she pierced the hearts of the audience which stimulated a standing ovation and tears of joy from her humble performance. Recently, she has portrayed an English woman, including the accent, who became a news reporter in America as a midterm project in her Business Communications class, taught by Professor D. Moore. Receiving an “A” for her outstanding performance, she was encouraged to contact Shawn P of Shawn P Entertainment for casting opportunities. Now at age 21, Emily still holds the goal of one day becoming an actress, singer, dancer, and an all around performer because it is what she loves to do!

Nakia McCarty aka Nix is no stranger to the stage. She has been a performer since the age of 3. As she grew older her love for the arts also grew. Thoughout the years Nix became a member of the following groups: The Detroit Choir & Youth Corale (Dr. Cass Hudson), The Detroit Coucil Of The Arts (Mr. Clyde Harper), Gospel Music Workshop of America (the late Rev. James Cleavland),and Rev. D. Haddon & Voices of Unity.

Nix also began her own signing group (God’s Loving Angels). Nix takes pride in giving back to the commuity. She was a student teacher at Detroit’s Murray Wright High School, which gave her the push she needed to start a dance troop for local churches & recreation centers. She has shared the stage with an array of great actors, singers and dancers such as Ozzie Davis, Ruby Dee, Sherman Hemsley, Billy Dee Williams,Vanessa Bell Armstrong,Charlie Wilson, Gregery Hines, Henson, Kim Witley,John Hinton,Lisa Raye, and many others. Nix has toured nationally with many musical stage productions that include Purlie Victorious, A Mid-Summmer Night’s Dream, Special is About to happen, If These Hips Could Talk, and Why Good Girls Like Bad Boys.

With an insatiable appetite for the stage she has learned to make herself invaluable to this world by learning every joint that makes the theater body move. From ticket taking to running the light board, Nix is a creative singer, actress, dancer, and all around performer!

Erica N. Williams was born in Mission Hills Ca, and raised in Saginaw Michigan. Erica is the daughter of Deborah and the late Willie Williams, Sr. Erica has been acting since the age of six. Since coming to Lansing in 2006, Erica has starred in the Greater Lansing Women’s Center Vagina Monologues, Capital Area Performers “What Would Jesus Do”, and Riverwalk Theatre “Tribute to the Black Theatre 2 and Living The Dreams Of My Ancestors and Fountain Productions “Calvary”. Erica enjoys volunteering, going to church, acting and hanging with family and friends. Erica is a member of Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc, Top Ladies of Distinction Inc, NAACP, National Council of Negro Women and many more.

Danielle “Dannie Jae” Jeter (Keisha Rivers) is excited to be gracing a Detroit stage once again. Danielle is a native of Detroit but resides in Lansing, MI where she has obtained most of her experience through The Michigan State University (currently studies theater) and Lansing Community Theater Departments. Some of Dannie’s favorite shows include No Where To Hide, The Story, A Raisin in the Sun, Hair, and The Wiz. Danielle would like to thank her mother and oldest brother for their love and support along with the rest of her family and friends for their commitment to seeing her through to success, and for just being wonderful. “I recognize that I am truly blessed to have such great people in my life.”
Kim Noble is a Detroit native and mother of three. Her passion is acting, modeling, and singing. In 2005 she received a certificate from the Repertory Theatre and again in 2010 for her performance in the Breakfast Special where she received a positive review. Now that both of her sons are in college she is looking forward to really pursuing her passions. Her place of worship is Renaissance Unity Church in Warren, MI.
Verlycia J. Douglas was born July 26, 1978 in Detroit, Michigan to a two-parent home that already had two young sons, Verlycia became the last and only female child that her parents had long awaited. As a young child she participated in many school art fairs and poetry competitions. Her mother raising her in church also felt it important for her to participate in the youth choir. However, she gravitated to the written word to express typical childhood frustrations. It was not until her first year of college, at Wayne State University, did she decide to take voice lessons as an extracurricular course. It was there that Verlycia discovered that she could do more than just carry a tune but had a God-given talent. This opened her eyes to the value of her poetry as not just spoken word but also lyrics. In 1997, she began to audition for every talent show and competition she could find in the Metro Detroit Area. It was at this time that she began to explore other talents such as acting and playwright. Since this time Verlycia has participated in such plays as “Love Lifted Me”, “Deranged” and several other local church plays.
Kimberly Wray-Norman has been blessed with the opportunity to be a part of several local community theatrical productions (i.e. Matrix Theatre & Company, Director’s Dream Production, Link4Productions, EmmasChild Production, Shii Productions and Shawn P. Entertainment). She’s worked alongside numerous talented individuals. During her pursuit of knowledge and experience, Kimberly has appeared in a film, a radio play, several stage plays and actively participated in a script playwriting circle. She gives thanks to GOD for all who believe, encourage and supports her.
Olvin Toylise Pettway was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan. She comes from a family of five. She is the oldest of three children and the first in her family to achieve education beyond high school. Olvin graduated from Eastern Michigan University in 2003 and received her Bachelor’s of Arts degree in psychology. Currently, Olvin attends New Breed School of Ministry. Olvin is also a graduate student, attending Walsh College, in pursuit of a Master of Business Administration degree.

Olvin’s acting work includes a small role in Alpha Omega skits, as well as a small role in New Breed Drama department. Her professional work and volunteer experiences spans over 15 years, including liaison services, managing staff, facilitating meetings, coordinating services, and teaching seminars. Olvin empowers individuals on a daily basis to be integral contributors in their community, while addressing barriers (i.e. housing, lack of child care, lack of transportation, and etc…) that could hinder their successful reintegration into the workforce. In addition, Olvin has obtained honors such as the National Dean’s List, Gold Medallion Award for Outstanding Leadership and Services, and Community Volunteer Service Award Programs.

Olvin is a member of Alpha Omega Collegiate Ministries. Olvin is aspiring to become a great actress!

Rhonda Beverly has appeared in several plays and movies. The stage productions have included: The Man with the Seven Wives, Don’t Let the Green Grass Fool You, I Won’t Complain, and The Big Nativity Case. Short films appearances include: The Hit, The Pack, and Allure. A tv series : Bosses 313 . Theater movies include Heat of Passion Rush of Blood, Beneath and My Step Kids. Rhonda is currently working in a new movie: Love and Blood Don’t Mix and the hit play back by popular demand, I’ve Been Through 2 Much Already.



Red started his comedy career in a Detroit based comedy club (CoCo’s House of Comedy) in October of 1998. Since his first performance on stage Red has matured into one of the most realistic comedians in the circuit today. Taking his outlook and spin on real life and putting it to jokes, Red will have you doubled over in your seat with laughter. Like all of us, Red (husband and father), has had obstacles to overcome in comedy as well as in “everyday” life but he has found a way to take obstacles and turn them into milestones His enthusiasm and positivity is not only reflected on stage but exudes into every aspect of his life.

There’s not a person Red encounters that is not touched by his positive and humorous outlook on life. If you are in a bad mood Red has a way of always getting that giggle out of you, sometimes before you even realize it your mood is uplifted instantly. Like they say laughter is medicine for the soul. So, Red is not just a comedian he is a doctor for the soul, a comediologist, —if you will. Red is one chosen to bring a smile to your face. So why not enjoy one of God’s greatest gifts (laughter) and book Red for your next event.

Red is capable of hosting, featuring and headlining comedy shows. He performs clean, as well as, adult comedy and will travel if accommodations are provided. Keeping true to his motto, “No show to big or small” Red knows how to deliver that knock out comedy punch to any type of crowd leaving them wanting more.


Melissa Talbot is a simple yet complex person. She’s a multi-talented director, producer, and graphic designer. As general manager of Okane Media Group she has overseen many projects locally and nationally including film, television, books, magazines and other forms of mass media. She is mostly known for her role as director/producer of SwitchplayTV, which was one of the longest running and highest rated independent shows on the WB, which has birthed a hilarious improv sketch comedy live show “Switchplay Live” garnering much success over the past 8 years. Melissa has also been involved with sell out productions “HE SAID, SHE SAID” and “CHEATERS” written by Dennis L Reed II, co-written by Karl King and “WHEN A WOMAN LOVES” written by Karl King.

Melissa is a modest woman and her first rule is never to bad mouth anyone in business, but believes the work speaks for itself so without a single utterance you live or die by your own commitment. The thing that she is most grateful for is her “TEAM” without them none of this would be possible. She is totally committed to each and every project and gives 110% or nothing at all. Though she has made many accomplishments in her career, if asked she’ll tell you her greatest achievement was changing from where she was to who she is today. A loving wife, mother, friend and business woman…and never losing perspective of the importance of each. She personally would like to thank everyone for their continuous support in all of her endeavors and would like to ask everyone for a favor…”SMILE, EVEN WHEN YOU FEEL YOU HAVE NO REASON” and “LIVE YOUR LIFE TO THE FULLEST”!! God Bless Everyone!! Melissa Talbot is a director, producer, loving wife, involved mother, and she’s one of the people in your neighborhood.

Danny Pitts was born on the eastside of a small village in Montana. Danny began writing at the age of three when his mother would leave him alone in their three bedroom log cabin. To keep busy he would tell stories to the woodland creatures and various ghosts that would visit him in the night. At age ten, Danny and his family traveled across country to Detroit, Michigan in search of better employment. He soon met Juanita, who shortly after became his wife. Danny’s fable telling turned into writing.

Danny continued to write songs and speeches for friends and family, but didn’t consider playwriting until he joined True Rock Church and became a writer for the drama ministry. After a few years of writing for the church, Danny decided to develop his own production company. He asked GOD to lead him to someone he can learn from and that’s when he met Shawn Williams. Through Shawn he has been exposed to a host of talented producers, writers and actors. Danny feels truly blessed to be in the company of this group of young professionals. He hopes to learn much from them and offer some advice from his own experiences.

Orna-Charece Jones hails from the city of Southfield, Michigan, and earned the title of Miss Tennessee State University in the year 2007-2008. That same year she obtained the title of Miss National Black College Alumni Hall of Fame making her the “Queen of Queens” for Historically Black Colleges and Universities, the third from Tennessee State University and the FIRST from the state of Michigan.

Majoring in Foreign Language with a concentration in Spanish with an accompanying minor in Speech Communications and Theater, she maintained a 3.9 grade point average and graduated Summa Cum Laude May 2008 from Tennessee State University. Orna takes advantage of any opportunity to learn. She believes it is important to be well-versed in several areas of expertise in order to obtain experience and possibly open doors to other fields of interest. Since graduating, she has been actively pursuing her dreams of becoming a playwright through her musical productions Daughters of Deception & The Girl Who Cried Love. She is currently a substitute teacher, a swim instructor at Gold Fish Swim School and is also working on her teacher certification at Eastern Michigan University.

The one thing she hopes to accomplish more than anything in her life is to be remembered, she believes that “the closest thing to eternity is when your memory lives on for you”. Orna would like to leave behind a legacy that transfers her LOVE for the community and dedication to the development of insightful minds to her future students, who will in turn change the world.






Lesson in the Arts by Ruben Wilson

Why conference??

Two reasons for producing a book , play, or film:(1) get your message out, (2) get money to come in –m&m”s (message & money)  Tired of attending conferences and only meeting other interesting artists who aren’t selling a lot or getting their message out?  Do you wish to expand your message & sales beyond close friends and family?

 It is a shame for so much creativity to go unnoticed.   Hence, here’s an unsolicited thought. The more cooperation the more success. Even the best could benefit from community support.  Your competition comes from small towns and large cities all around America. As a united army you will realize m&m ( message out / money in).

 If every author, publisher, artist, playwright, and film producer brought in (10) friends, family, church, work, school, and other organizations to each conference your m&m would grow.

 By helping the community, the community helps you get your message out and money to come in. Your contacts have supported your product, so when your contacts come they will buy my product and my contacts will buy your products.

 This is not Sylvia, Tracie & Audra, Herb, Aurora, or Janaya‘s job or I-got-to-get-mine thang. You are the marketing & public relations department. By continuing to support only those that you like you risk increasing conference apathy and anxiety, every author for themselves, and divided we fall.

 Moral of the story — SUPPORT EACH OTHER

 Literary Yours,


 The Streets are Talking…

* Hello Mr. Shawn P. Thanks for the information regarding your work. We are very interested in working with you! When u have a moment out of your busy schedule can we please set a meeting date? Would love for you to host a fund raiser event for us! Sorry we could not attend your birthday party. Hope everything turned out fine. Sure you will continue to be blessed with many more! Looking forward to working with you soon! (LoTanya Dortch)

* Continued successes and BIG blessings (Ruben Gordon)

* SHAWN, thank you for the information..it was very interesting speaking with you at the International. Thank you for even offering to do a fundraiser for me as I work towards making “THE POSITIVE CHANGE TO BE ACCOUNTABLE TO THE PEOPLE I AM ELECTED TO SERVE” PLEASE LETS SIT DOWN AND TALK. (Toni Adams, Community Activist)

 * Happy Birthday! (Willie Lockett)

* I have a website radio station check it out! www.katsentertainment.com

* Well, I hope you had an outstanding day I always have a good time with you. (Robert Fish)

* Hey Shawn,

I think you should get it touch with Michelle my niece because she is organizing for Detroit. I see on Facebook that you and her have several mutual friends. You should contact her. She is hosting a parade for their sub division this June. See what happens. Take care and we miss you. (Toni M Christmas)

* I see you homie!! Newsletter looking good! (DJBabe)

* We saw a very good goespel play this evening at the Northwest Activity Center. Prayer Still Works by Angela Naylor. Please keep me posted on any of your plays also. (Sharold Lewis)

* Keep Doing It Big Bro!!! Looking out anyway I can. (Michael Sears)

 * Thank Shawn I will be placing another ad this month. (Izola Bird)

* Hey Shawn,

I see the baby is getting big. The CornerStore was a great movie. I got a chance to talk to Joe at a forum he hosted about how to film a low budget movie in Detroit. Shawn, my play will be in December 2011 at my church. I will have a date soon. I’d like to be featured in your newsletter in November if it’s ok. I will have a flyer ready for advertisement. I’m not sure if you can squeeze me in, but I would appreciate it dearly. (Stacey J.)

* Shawn,

 OMG! Your son is absolutely adorable. He’s growing so fast. Good looking family. Thanks for sending the picture. Continued Blessings. (Kim McKissack)


Out on the Town with Shawn P…


Words from Shawn…

CeCe Winans, Nat Morris, and Shawn P

WOW!!  I can’t believe we’re wrapping up our 2nd year of publishing this newsletter.  I want to thank Octavia and her staff for keeping me on track and focused.  Thank you to everyone for your submission of bios, fliers, reviews, comments, and events.  The Lord willing, I will see quite a few of you at my December 10 birthday party and hopefully in the new year.  Let’s commit to being more focused and driven to get to the next level in 2012.  May God continue to bless and keep you.

Keep Drama in Your Life,

Shawn P.

BTW – I’m still seeking gainful employment, so if you hear of something, keep me in mind. And yes, I know Lord will continue to provide.

Actress of the Season…Chiquetta Bunts

Chiquetta Bunts, a native of Muskegon, Michigan started singing in the church choir at the tender age of five. When she received her first lead at nine, she was convinced that God wanted her to sing.  She was later introduced to dance and acting, making her a triple threat.  Chiquetta has demonstrated her talents in dance recitals, church productions and community theater productions (Auntie Ronnie and I’m in Love with a Stripper). She has also sung with female Christian group, Nu Luv and starred as Dorothy in The Wiz.  Chiquetta’s goal in life is to be a blessing to others by giving the very best of her talents.

Producer of the Season-Paul Johnson, Jr.

Playwright, actor, singer, and master barber – Paul Johnson, Jr. is a man of many talents.  Paul has always had a passion for the arts.  “At the age of eight my dad gave me a 4-track recorder and a small keyboard.  At that moment I was convinced that I’d be doing music all my life.  That was the platform.”  At 13, Paul became a youth praise leader at Evangel Ministries.  He also joined the drama and theatre ministries.  Paul participated in Redford High School’s ensemble, male vocal and concert choirs.  Paul studied business at Wayne State University and has become an entrepreneur. He is the founder of Uncle Pauly Productions and 313 Soul Entertainment.  Both ventures are geared toward revitalizing music and theatre in Detroit.  As an actor, Paul has landed roles in Kwame a River, Life of Sam, Boss Lady, and many more.  As a playwright, he has written multiple plays including A Distant Past, Young Boys, and Drastic Measures.  If interested in appearing in a production, please send your headshot and bio to unc313@yahoo.com.

 Producer of the Season…Janaya Black

Janaya Black is a woman who thrives in the capacity of wearing many hats.  A passionate writer at heart, she seamlessly blends her creative drive and aspirations into the many other facets that make up her impressive resume.  In 2004, Janaya wrote and published her first fiction novel The Breaking Point, followed by her second release in Novmeber 2006, As Told by the Other Woman, and the third and final installment of the “Prison Chronicles” series Beautiful Rage: The Break of Dawn in 2008.

With the release of her first book followed the spark that ignited her love for the art of independent filmmaking.  After teaming with her husband Rockey Black, president of Goldline Films, to create trailer for The Breaking Point, she then went on to write, direct and produce four other short film projects, released her first feature length film, Till Death…Do Us Part to DVD in 2009, and is now in production for a comedy called Why Do Men Cheat that is scheduled to be released later this year.

Janaya serves as President/CEO of Black-Smith Enterprises, which is an entertainment infrastructure she created to house all her creative projects.  Black-Smith Enterprises is currently in negotiations to turn The Breaking Point into a feature length film, among several other projects that are in development.  She is also a managing partner and founder of the Trinity Film Coalition, which is a Michigan-based film organization that is dedicated to the advancement of independent film.

Janaya is the proud mother of two beautiful children, a community advocate and in her free time she enjoys spending time with her family, playing sports, and reading.  For more information about Janaya Black, please visit www.black-smithenterprises.com, www.youtube.com/jblack317, www.myspace.com/thebreakingpointmovie, and www.trinityfilmcoalition.com.

Actress of the Season…Sarah Wilder

Sarah Wilder is a native of Detroit, Michigan who has been diligently working in the theatre community since her early 20s.  She has performed with various theatre companies that include: Parables Entertainment, Magenta Giraffe Theatre Company, Matrix Theatre Company, and the Farmington Barn Players.  In addition to acting on stage, Sarah created The Curve Project, a theatrical experiment focused on celebrating women of all sizes.  This groundbreaking play, which featured female writers from all over the nation, was part of her final Masters of Arts degree project at Wayne State University to improve the quality of roles of plus size women in the entertainment industry.  Her second play, Girls Like Us, was featured in the 2010 Magenta Giraffe Theatre Company’s Second Annual Staged Reading Festival and as part of the New Playwright Series for The New Theatre Project in Ann Arbor.  While Sarah has many credits on stage, off stage and in film, her current role is in a cutting edge web series entitled Aliah as the main character’s sister, Ayo.  This web series from Commonality Productions is best described as, “…a family-orientated show about an American Muslim living in post 9/11 America forced to make life choices.” Sarah’s commitment to the development of quality entertainment has motivated others to realize the strength and potential within our own communities.

Actress of the Season…Johanna Lidgren

Johanna Lidgren is a 25 year old native of Sweden.  She has been living in Detroit for close to three years and has acquired a great appreciation for the city.  All forms of art have always interested her, however, Johanna has found theater to be her latest niche.  She recently participated in the 2011 Vagina Monologues presentation (My Vagina is My Village), produced by Shawn P. Entertainment and radio personality, Frankie Darcell as well as the stage play  Mother Church (Shawn P. Entertainment).



 Book Review: In The Pink

(A Woman’s Guide to Being a Girl) by Ramona Prater

I had the privilege of watching Ramona Prater bring the words of her book to life when I heard her  speak at an event a few months ago.  What stood out to me was that she had a very different view point than that which we are use to hearing when it comes to women.  The common message is usually that women should be strong and independent.  While her book doesn’t necessarily say that this way of thinking is wrong, it definitely shakes up the idea by addressing some very powerful truths.

It all boils down to us being honest with ourselves.  Many of us say we don’t need a man, and technically this may be true, but at the end of the day, most of us want a man, want a healthy relationship and want a marriage that works.

Throughout the book there are several instances where she forces us to be honest with ourselves by making bold statements and observations about our behaviors and choices as women.  The first statement that caught my attention in her speech and then again in her book was when she said, quite simply, “…No man wants…another man.” This statement was in reference to the idea that feminine freedom means that we are so strong and powerful that we don’t need a man, yet we continue to date men while simultaneously asserting these beliefs.  A partnership is all about balance and while two people in a relationship may not necessarily need one another to survive, it’s definitely nice to share your life with someone that adds value to it.

In her chapter entitled, “Damsels in Distress” Ramona makes mention of something that several people think, but rarely say, “There are women who have decided on their own that they will take on ‘motherhood’ without the consent of a man, you know who you are…and you should be ashamed of yourself.” This bold statement brings light to a situation where women often take on the role of victim.  Her words almost dare them instead to take responsibility for their choices.  This is just one of several examples where she calls us out on our stuff.

The two quotes that I’ve shared with you are merely a taste of how In the Pink is a feisty, daring and powerful read.  Ramona Prater is not afraid to make bold and powerful statements of truth that make us really take inventory of what it means to be a woman.  It makes me think of something that I heard someone say in a relationship workshop that I’ll never forget.  The instructor said something to the effect, “All men aren’t dogs.  If we’ve been in several relationships that have failed, we are the only common denominator in all of those relationships.  So maybe it’s time to take a look at ourselves.”

This is exactly what Ms. Prater’s book does…she forces us to take an honest look at ourselves as women.  As you read her book you will be challenged to think about what you really want, what you really need and what you really need to do to get those things.  She explores the power of practicing silence, our tendency to enable our sons to the point where they can’t reach their full potential as men, submission and self-care.

This is a quick read, yet powerful book that I think all women should read.  Whether you agree or disagree with her way of thinking, this work is thought-provoking and would make for a great catalyst for discussion among women, as well as between men and women thus making it an excellent book club selection.

For more information, or to purchase the book, visit InThePinkBook.com. Review courtesy of Monica Marie Jones (www.monicamariesjones.com) for Motown Writers Network.

I Said It, Now What – Year End Review

Well fellow Smurfs, if the calendar is any indication, we are fastly approaching the close of another theater season and year. But what a ride it has been, wouldn’t you agree? This year, I was blessed to have experienced a number of stage productions: some well-written, some well-performed, and some that needed a little work. But that’s neither here nor there because our productions, much like ourselves, are all works in progress.

I reminence over 2011 and I am reminded of various life lessons. For instance Cheaters engage in Affairs and become Entangled in all kinds of dangerous Deception that can lead to sliced tires and broken windowsI have also learned that if I’m not careful I might unknowingly invite the Enemy in My House which can contribute to Spirits in My Bedroom.  As most of my girlfriends are women of a certain age, we might be considered Cougars with interesting Vagina Monologues of our own – shhh – a lady never tells. It certainly costs to be the Boss Lady which often leads to Drastic Measures in the game of Hustle and Love.  It can have you seeking companionship on a Chatline while you Wait for Love. However, if you’re deligent and manage to avoid being Tainted by all the distractions of living, it’s possible to experience the very best life has to offer.  Of course there’s going to be times when you want to declare, “I’ve Been Through Too Much Already” and it feels like The Color Black is the worse thing to be – but I have learned there’s always something to hope for. Maybe it’s the joy in a child’s laughter, the beauty of a rainbow, or the kind words of a friend. To my fellow playwrights, keep writing and keep the faith. In the game of Rock, Paper, Scissors you don’t always win or lose, but if nothing else, the anticipation of the outcome should keep you believing in your dreams.

I look forward to your 2012 stage presentations, TV series, and film projects. We all have greatness on the inside and the best is yet to come, so  Til Death Do Us Part, give the world your best, suck everything you can out of life, and keep reaching for the next level!

This article and subsequent reviews are courtesy of a local Detroit playwright aka The Writer.

Upcoming Events…




Hello Shawn,
I hope you can come out and see “Rock,Paper,Scissors”.  Marygrove College produces an event titled “Dramafest” where we do staged readings of new & original plays by emerging and established playwrights. Maybe someone you know would be interested. We’re looking for plays for our April Dramafest Program.
(Leslie Love)
* * *
Great newsletter Shawn!
(Actress Sonia Miller)
* * *
Thanks for the newsletter. Very comprehensive, excellent leads.
(David Rambeau)
* * *
I like the valuable, helpful information you provide in your articles. I will bookmark your blog and check again here frequently. I am quite sure I will learn lots. I think this is one of the most important info (sites) for me…But (I) wanna remark on a few general things. The website style is wonderful, the articles are really excellent. Good Job. Cheers…

Words from Shawn…

Shawn P and author, Angela Hairston

The fall season is in full gear.  Please go out and support a play or event.
Shawn P.
Keep Drama in Your Life!


Actor of the Month…Cristen G. Adams

 Cristen Gerald Adams (born Cristen Brent Gerald Swanson on February 26, 1986 in Detroit, MI), also known as Rocket, is an actor, stand-up comedian, writer, vocalist, future radio personality, & co-CEO of Extreme Action Entertainment alongside performer Freddie Blaqe. A former member of One Source Talent, Adams is also an alumni of Specs Howard School of Media Arts for radio broadcasting. Adams has completed 3 independent films, and is currently working on 4th  entitled “The Goblin Lady” with actors Giles Key, Eric Palmer, Trono Hudgins, Javon Anderson, Carl Hale, and many others. Adams is also casted for another film project called “Lucky”.

Adams appeared in  3 stage plays at Oakland Community College in Farmington Hills for directors Diane Hill & Dennis North. He recently finished his 5th play “The Choices I’ve Made” for John Mayes & Rob Mitchell III. This summer he was featured in “Situations” for Mitchell.  His most recent appearance was in “Boss Lady” for writer/producer/director Vanessa Lynn. Rocket is also developing a comic book series starring himself and his alter-ego. He has also appeared in his very first murder mystery dinner play “Next Of Kin” directed & produced by Shevonne ‘Shevy’ Jones. Adams on coming up w/ the nickname Rocket: “It’s more than just a nickname. It’s a title. It describes me, my life, and my career taking off to newer heights.”

As a child, Rocket was funny from the first day he first spoke. He always loved being the center of attention, despite shyness and anxiety at times. While watching Def Comedy Jam & BET’s ComicView during the 90s, Rocket decided to pursue stand-up comedy. He made his comedic debut at Joey’s Comedy Club on July 7, 2008. Adams has done play acting throughout his childhood, performing at school & churches while humoring and entertaining various crowds.  

Adams is a native Michigander and a huge fan of sports, video games, movies, martial arts, stand-up comedy, music, and life itself. Rocket also enjoys walks, bike rides, getting into shape, bars, clubs, events, reading, writing jokes, and many other things to keep himself occupied. A happily single young man, the sky-high air force Cristen ‘Rocket’ Adams will continue to ‘take off’ like never before & make all his dreams come true.


Actress of the Month…Stacey Johnson

Wife, mother of two and retired police officer, Stacey Shannon Johnson began studying theatre at Martin Luther King HS under the direction of Dr. Denise Darcell Davis Cotton.  She attended a playwright’s guild at the Attic Theatre while in high school.  In 2004, she wrote and produced a play “A Woman of Courage” at her church. She is currently working on her next gospel play to be produced in fall 2011. 

She was in the Production of Vagina Monologues (Reclaiming Cunt and Woman #4) produced by Shawn P and Frankie Darcell radio host.  Stacey loves acting and writing and her hobbies are traveling and cooking. 


Producer of the Month…Benjamin Williams

Benjamin John Williams is an alumnus of The Bonstelle Theatre Company with a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts (Summa Cum Laude) in Theatre from Wayne State University. At Wayne, Benjamin experienced opportunities to study Classical Theatre in Spetes, Greece and the Stanislavski System of Acting in Moscow, Russia. Benjamin was also a recipient of many awards and accolades for his theatrical community outreach endeavors, including the Lily Tomlin Scholarship and the Betterment of the Detroit Community through the Arts Fund. His original play Big Moves, written during Benjamin’s tenure at WSU was the 1st place winner of the 2011 Louise Heck-Rabi Playwriting Competition.

 In undergrad, Benjamin developed his passion as an artistic community leader. Benjamin is strongly committed to building a rapport among the Detroit artistic community and young artists. This is prevalent in his work as a Teaching Artist for the Mosaic Youth Theatre of Detroit, and his work as Director of Education Programming with The Arts League of Michigan.

 His other great passion is formatting arts and multi-media as mediums for social and educational development.  This is evident in his work as Director of Theatrical Outreach Programming for the organization: People Mover Productions; his work as a Detroit playwright, his research endeavor: Stanislavski’s System of Acting as Applied Theatre for Youth Empowerment; and his newly founded theatrical organization: ThinkUP Theatre.

 As a vocalist, Benjamin has studied with Frances Brockington in Detroit, Judith Kellock and Ric Ryder in New York, and Marina Smirnova in Moscow, Russia. Benjamin has been fortunate to share the stage with recognized artists Al Green, Pete Seeger, and Sweet Honey in the Rock.

 In film and Television, Benjamin has worked on set of the Major Motion Pictures “Real Steel” starring Hugh Jackman and directed by Shawn Levy, “Restitution” directed by Lance Kawas, “Detroit 187” for ABC Studios, Industrial Films for Wayne State University, and he can currently be seen in a national campaign for “5 Hour Energy Shot”.   

 Benjamin states that his “rooted life goal is to launch multi-media outreach initiatives that focus on the revitalization of Detroit’s social and artistic culture; then have these initiatives become staples of cultivation for Detroit’s often overlooked potential”.  To reach Benjamin, send an email to benjaminwilliams1@hotmail.com  or visit his website: www.benjaminjohnwilliams.com.



Author of the Month…Angela Hairston

Permanently Etched In My Heart is the first book released under Highland Park Publishing written by author Angela Hairston.  It’s an urban legend love story from the streets of a small city in the heart of Detroit, Michigan known as the city of Highland Park.   The main character, Selena Wright, is a stunning young lady that grew up in a city as it became plagued by gangs, drugs, and political corruption.  Despite the trials and tribulations of growing up in the hood she fell in love with one of the city’s biggest drug dealer.  A trail of sex, drugs, murder, and mayhem follows Selena and an intriguing group of colorful characters through this journey.

 The author Angela Hairston grew up in the city of Highland Park, Michigan and graduated from the University of Detroit Mercy with duel degrees. Writing has always been a passion of hers that she only considered a hobby until a niece stumbled across her writings and encouraged her to share them with the world.  In 2009, she made her publishing debut as one of the premier authors in “Cosmos Anthology 2010”, published by 3-Queens Publications, which introduced an excerpt from her second installment of books, “Karma Is A Bitch.”  She is presently residing in the metropolitan area of Atlanta, Georgia with her family where she is working on establishing a career as an author and publisher under her company Highland Park Publishing.   

 Ms. Hairston has five other books to follow: Karma Is A Bitch and Karma is a Bitch 2 both are epic tales of how one’s past can affect the future.  Hoe Know Your Place is the handbook that most parents don’t teach their daughters about relationships with men.  Richard Doe is a murder mystery about a male serial killer.  Yana’s Tale explores the journey of a young lady trying to escape the harsh obstacles found in an entire city.  She is also working on a nine book series named “Lynn’s Chronicles” which explores a woman’s erotic tales on her journey to finding Mr. Right.

Information on contacting author and purchasing Permanently Etched In My Heart and future titles can be found on publisher’s website: www.highlandparkpublishing.com.


Upcoming Events…













































Hi Shawn,
  Just dropping a line to say hello.  I hope all is good and everything is going well with ya!
Hey Shawn,
In addition to writing the Ben Carson script, I want to help you earn a lot of money this year.  I attended a millionaire meeting Friday night……it was awesome!  You don’t have to sell shawn.  My son and me will do the selling.  If you supply some good leads for us, we will close the deal – you will get paid.  Join our team shawn and you will never regret it.  You will never have to worry about money again.  There are 40 million people in this country without life insurance and that is a shame.  Most people who have insurance are underinsured and we want to change this deplorable situation.  We have weekly meetings and I want you to come with me to one of the meetings.  Take care shawn.
Lake Liverman
Thanks for the love Shawn. Continued success!- JoeJoe D. [Doughrity]
Producer / Writer / Director

Words from Shawn P…

Shawn P, Amir, and actor Bill Hill

Well, the summer is drawing to a close, there are still plenty of events and plays going on.  Also, if you get a chance, go check out the movie “The Cornerstore”, featuring some local Detroit talent.
Keep Drama in Your Life,
Shawn P.

Actor of the Month…Mike Sears


Mike Sears was born and raised on the eastside, in the great city of Detroit. He studied music and business at Ferris State University, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Industry Management. He is currently working on the release of his debut CD entitled “Life of a CHAMPION”. His genuine love for the arts has also afforded him the opportunity to work in several stage and film productions with a few upcoming projects in the works.



Producer of the Month…

Robert E. Mitchell III

R. E. Mitchell III has been writing since high school and has grown into a creative playwright. Mitchell has written “Coming Home”, “Coming Back Home”, “Where The HEART Is”, “Saints or Ain’ts”, “From Sinner 2 Saint”, “I’ve Been Through 2 Much Already”, “More Than Enough..The Job Story” and “Situations” (cowritten by John Mayes). Mitchell has worked with great people and production companies such as  Burse Productions, Shawn P Entertainment, Lynette White (Church Folks),  Angelika Smith-Jones (Reason for the Season-Holiday Musical), Regina Mack (Chosen), Vincent Rutley, Paul Johnson Jr., Robert Cafagna Denby High version of “Dream Girls”, “Little Shop of Horrors” and “Reason for the Season” and John A. Mayes “The Choices I’ve Made”. R. E. Mitchell and John A. Mayes combined their production companies and formed Mayes & Mitchell which is taking the world by storm. Be looking for bigger and better things to come.


Actress of the Month…Ursula Bennett-Ace

Ursula Ace,(“The Psalmstress”), is the proud wife of Jesse Ace, III, and mother to three wonderful children, Kerron (16), Kriserion (10), and her little princess pineapple, Kiersten (5). She is a member of Outreach Cathedral of Faith Ministries where the awesome and anointed pastor is Pastor Timothy Jackson.    

Mrs. Ace has been singing since the 4th grade.  Her musical talents were shaped by her 4th grade music teacher, Mrs. Wheat, at Woodward Elementary.  Ursula auditioned for the lead in “Annie” which was the summer musical and hasn’t stopped singing since.  Ursula sang in the Summer Youth Employment Agency’s summer program and worked alongside Mickey Braden where she learned stage presence, Kim Weston where she was taught the history of Music in the African American community, and she learned songwriting from the late, Carolyn Franklin, sister of the Magnificent, Aretha Franklin.

 Ursula has performed in numerous plays across the Detroit area including, 1515 Broadway, where she played, Angela in “The Other Side of the Story”, written by Lanette White and produced and directed by Shawn P. Williams of Shawn P. Williams Entertainment.  Most recently she added to her credits an understudy role for Victoria Vaughn in the hit stage play “Why Good Girls Like Bad Boyz” produced and written by Angela Barrow-Dunlap and Lizzie Berry. Ursula also was a background singer for the hit stage play, “Affairs”, written, produced, and directed by Vanessa Lynn of Parables Entertainment. She also adds to her credit the role of “Mother Laster” in Lynn’s stage play “Unequally Yoked”, as well as a role in the upcoming saga, “Boss Lady”.

 Ursula gives all glory and honor to the one and only wise God who has kept her from falling and who has blessed her to be able to do what she loves the most – singing and giving Him praise for who He is and what He has done in her life. “If it had not been for His Grace and unwavering Favor over my life……MY GOD!!!”    


  Upcoming Events…








































Good Reading…Izola Bird


 You want to read something with powerful chapters, and forgiveness, then this book is for you! This book is a true story of a woman with a determination to save her marriage. My intuition tells me something is wrong, but my husband denied he was having an affair.   Then, in one day, my life is utterly changed: The Witch Who Stole My Husband (inside chapter) and the Mother-in-law Who helped.  You can get order this book at Barnes and Noble.com or Amazon.com. I can be reached at izola574@yahoo.com for any questions. 

Izola Bird is an award winning author of Burning the Mattress (Black book Award in South Hampton, Forging Ahead Award and lives in South Bend, Indiana. She is also a playwright of The Straw Women who made Bricks.


* Hey Shawn, thanks for sending me your newsletter. It looks great! (N. Liverman)

* Awesome information.  The accomplishments are quite impressive.  Please keep up the great work. (Cherry Scott-Jones, Success Coach, www.cherryscottjones.com, 586-739-6440)

Words from Shawn…


Shawn P and Master P


It’s hott!!  Summertime around the country.  Check out a summer production or summer a local playwright.

Keep Drama in Your Life,

Shawn P.




Lynette Patrick is a native Detroiter, who loves her city and cherishes her family.  Quote, “Without my family, I would’ve never stepped out on faith to become a performer.”  Lynette’s most recent performances this year have included, The Vagina Monologues, The Choices I’ve Made, Situations, I’ve Been Through too Much Already, and the web series Better With Pie.  Lynette’s next appearance will be in Vanessa Lynn’s Boss Lady in September.  With a positive attitude, great personality, and phenomenal talent, Detroit audiences can expect many great things from this up-and-coming star.



Angelia Mitchell is the CEO of Glorified Productions.  She is a single woman with five beautiful children and the grandmother of Jeavun Franklin.  She is truly grateful that God has covered her with His favor and the gift of writing.  God has been the leader and guide throughout her life.  Glorified Productions specializes in gospel plays, song writing, and skits.  Reaching individuals and transforming lives through the gospel of Jesus Christ is the focus through drama, dance, and singing.  Angelia loves doing what God has gifted her to do.  If you would like to reach Glorified Productions, please call Angelia at (313) 695-6539 or singleoneofgod@yahoo.com.  “Remember to keep God in all you do.  The only thing that can hold you back is fear and fear alone.”



Born and raised in Detroit, Sylvia Hubbard—a mother of three and social media consultant—has written 25 novels in varying genres. In 2000—the same year she released her first novel, “Dreams of Reality”—Hubbard founded the Motown Writers Network, an organization dedicated to connecting local readers with local writers and promoting literacy in the Metro Detroit area. Among other things, Ms. Hubbard is an award-winning Amazon bestselling author.  Despite her many successes and recognition, she remains humble and committed to sharing her knowledge with anyone willing to listen. Sylvia loves what she does and puts her heart into every project.

Her current projects and events include:

 – Monthly 2nd Saturday discussion for writers, except November ( Barnes & Nobles 82 W Warren)

  • – August 6 – 7, 2011, stage play, Life: In  4-Part Harmony (111 E. Kirby at Woodward)
  • – Sept 17 – 18, 2011 FallIntoBooks.com Literary Conference in St. Louis
  • – Sept 22, 2011 Workshop: How to Write, Publish & Market Ebooks in Detroit, MI. 
  • – October 15, 2011 Motown BookClub Mix & Mingle, Holiday Inn Express in Detroit, MI
  • – November 11 – 12, 2011 Motown Literary Jam & Conference, Virgil Carr Conference Center www.essenceofmotownlitconference.com
 To get tickets, find out more information, or RSVP for events, please go to: http://detroitmichiganliterarynetwork.com. 






From playwright, Tirrell McCoy, who was featured in last month’s newsletter…”Thanks for the love bro.  Means a lot.”

From actor Willie Sanders…”Hello Shawn, I like the July newsletter, I just got. Man it’s good!  Keep up the good work and happy 4th of July to you.”

Words from Shawn P….


Welcome to the new monthly newsletter!  This publication is designed to bring you up-to-date theater/production information for Detroit and around the country. You can anticipate receiving monthly issues, with the exception of November and December, which are combined as our holiday issue.  We invite all actors, writers, and promoters to submit your information as soon as possible.  This is show BUSINESS! Let’s get it!

Keep Drama in Your Life,

Shawn P.






Born and raised in Detroit, MI, Tirrell has always been “The Funny Guy”. His earliest and fondest memories are of finding the humor in situations that most could not. During high school a friend told him, “Someday you’re going to make a lot of people laugh.” No truer words have ever been spoken. Tirrell knew that God had placed a calling on his life and he intended to use humor to minister to all classes of people. With that in mind, laughter became the focal point of his ministry; acting; marriage; business and everyday life.

Because of his love and concern for future generations Tirrell gave back to the community serving as Youth Director for Youth for Christ Ministries in October 2000. In this capacity he was faced with the daunting challenge of capturing the attention of a large group of restless, inattentive children and teens. Thus his alter ego, “The Reverend Doctor Deacon Cle-O-Dis was born.

As Tirrell does in character and stand-up comedy, he covers a wide range of topics that anyone can relate to. Performing as the Rev. Doc. Dea. Cle-O-Dis, he can get away with saying things that most “church folk” would dare not and as himself he can further cover everyday subjects ranging from dating to raising children. In December 2006, Cle-O-Dis recorded his first live Comedy DVD entitled, “Laugh Now, Cry Later”. Following up with “Laugh Now, Cry Later, II” in 2007. Being blessed with some ability to sing, Cle-O-Dis can minister to the needs of so many whether it be the high price of gas with his song, “Pay Up” or the fear of churches running out of chicken with his latest hit, “Tell me what we gone fry?” All the songs on the DVD and CD are to encourage and to uplift the soul.

Tirrell has appeared in numerous plays and productions from New York to Florida. But in 2005 he stepped out in faith to start his own production Company, Good Medicine Entertainment (GME) which has allowed him to write, produce and direct three stage plays “Favor”, “Lord, I Believe” and his latest production, “Saints on the Plane”. He has been blessed to share the stage with many national gospel recording artists such as: Kurt Carr; Ricky Dillard; Karen Clark-Sheard; Dorinda Clark-Cole; Dottie Peoples; Vanessa Bell Armstrong; J. Moss and many more. But by far his greatest honor has been to host the “Gospel and Jazz” stage of the 2008 Democratic National Convention where the first African American Presidential candidate Senator Barack Obama was elected to run for office.

Although he loves to make people laugh, the first calling on Tirrell’s life is to spread the gospel of his personal Savior, Jesus Christ. He serves as an associate Elder at Seth Temple Church of God in Christ under the leadership of Pastor Philip R. Jackson. The Bible declares that “a merry heart doeth good like medicine”. With his comedic anecdotes and Christ-centered message, Tirrell brings healing to hurting hearts as he spreads the good news through laughter. He is the husband to the beautiful and talented Candice and proud father of two children Whitney “Mooka” and Ashton Tirrell “Buddy”.

 “Comedy is everywhere; you just have to open your eyes”  (Tirrell McCoy)

Booking information: Contact Tirrell McCoy  313-717-8605


Mr. Sanders has been acting for several years on various levels. Willie has been trained in film acting and scene study at the Genittis Theatre by Mr. Gordon Michaels. He is also a graduate of the prestigious Detroit  Repertory Theare. His credits include: BoBo in “A Raisin in the Sun” stage production, The African neighbor in “The Heliopause”stage production, Joe Zates in “Me, You and Bar-B-Que” stage and film production, the nerdy schoolteacher in “Auntie Ronnie Goes to School” stage production, I’m N Luv with a Stripper, in a supporting role.

His film experience includes the film version of ” Me, You and Bar-B-Que”, plus an appearance in “Crave”, a feature film, and “You Don’t Know Jack”, an HBO movie. And his latest feature film is “S.W.A.T: Fire Fight” the movie, that you can download directly to your computer or phone. Mr. Sanders can be reached through his agent, Olga at Productions Plus, 2486445566.




Multi-gifted comedienne, actress, singer and flutist, Crystal P. has been making her way around the entertainment circuit.  Chosen as the Washington DC Regional Finalist for the Gospel Superfest and having been voted Detroit’s New Queen of Comedy by MIX 92.3 WMXD and the Royal Crowned Comedian by FM98 WJLB, Crystal P. returns to My Purpose Production for another round of hilarity and drama.  With comedy being her specialty, Crystal P. has opened for the King of Comedy, Steve Harvey; the P. Diddy’s Bad Boys of Comedy; and has been touring with Jonathan Slocumb’s Cuss-free Comedy Tour, Laughalujah and will be appearing on the Marvin Sapp Ministries Presents He Saw The Jokes in Me Comedy Tour. 

Crossing the border from comedy to acting, Crystal P.’s comedic light was able to shine when she appeared in In My Father’s House and The Night I Fell in Love.  She also appeared in the long-running hit, Unequally Yoked.  However, Crystal P. was able to shut off that light when she demonstrated her ability to be dramatic by recreating the life of Nina Simone.  Crystal P. has appeared on Showtime at the Apollo, Last Comic Standing, Up in the Air and will be featured in the movie, Pawn Shop, alongside comedic great and Saturday Night Live pioneer, Garrett Morris and comedian Joe Torry.  Crystal P. lives by the motto: The purpose of life is to live a life of purpose.  And her favorite scripture is Proverbs 17:22, A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.  Although Crystal P. has toured and performed on big stages and television, she always enjoys and is available for booking for churches, small gatherings and private parties as well.  Visit her website at www.crystalpiscrazy.com.



Have you’ve ever wanted to just have the stage to yourself and express your thoughts, or maybe an experienced that made a different in your life? Make people laugh or encourage them to make a change in their lives. I’ve always wanted to just be on the stage just me and everyone just listened to me. That happened for me when I wrote and performed my one woman stage show Bag Lady.
I wrote the show because I had come from a very deep depression and finally after years of feeling as if I was finally a life. I did look at my purses one day and realize that my purses were just like my body I just stuffed all my emotions inside of me just like I do my purses just pushing things inside not really thinking about what was going inside of me. That’s when I saw a vision of the purses that I had carried though out my life. I actually saw the first purse I carried as a little girl I could see the sadness, fear and angry that I had stuffed away inside of me just like I did that purse I’d carried as a child. I then envision all the bags that I’ve carried though out my life. The pictures of the purses stayed in my mind for days. I saw myself telling my story with the hopes of encouraging other women to let go of the emotions that they had carried for so many years. I believe the Holy Spirit spoke to me telling me to go forward and tell my story. After pray and sharing my vision with my confidante and the encouragement from my son and Shawn P. I went forward.
Being on that stage alone was frightened at first but then the thrill took over and I relaxed and just told my story.  I was up there being me that I had dreamed about long ago. The response from the audience was rejuvenating and exciting. I took a deep breath and just enjoyed the moment. I didn’t have to worry about having to share the stage with someone else the pressure of the other person maybe forgetting their part or feeling intimating by someone else performance. It was all on me what a way to too grow up being on stage alone.
Since my experience I feel a little stronger. I feel more assure of myself. I was able to go deep and do something that I’ve only dreamed about doing I walked into my dream. Being on stage alone has helped me be in control of me I believe in myself something I hadn’t felt like in a very long time. I hadn’t had many experiences of doing an actual performance with other performers. There are many challenges that comes with working with others but that’s part of theatre life.  Hey, it’s show biz right and that’s alright too it helps it’s all a learning experience I believe.
I’m so glad I had the experience of doing the show Bag Lady. Many people have come to me and told me that telling my story has helped them to let go and move forward in their lives as well. Being on that stage all to myself and relying on me was a lesson I had to learn. I see my strengths from taking the step and moving forward. It was great up there and having everyone listen to me just me just like I envision it.
Kim Kelsey
There is beauty in each day, there is love in each day.


Blazing out of the block with her debut novel, L.A. Jefferson deliver a magnificent story of love, lies, and struggles as one woman fights the power of her heart to resist the wrong man.  The main character, Lydia, leaps off the page as real life as you can get.  She’s addicted to a selfish, self-serving man and sacrifices herself and soul to get him out of her system.  You may not agree with Lydia’s decision, but the reward certainly comes in the end with this wonderfully written tale. 

Author’s Website: http://www.lajefferson.blogspot.com

Books available on author’s website or Amazon.com

About this author:

LA Jefferson is ecstatic to finally be debuting her novel, Unfinished Business, to the reading public. An avid reader since childhood, LA knew there was a story within her. It was only a matter of finding time between pursuing her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Business, raising two children, and working fulltime. But she finally made it happen! Currently, LA resides in Michigan and is hard at work on her next project.

Read excerpt at: http://lajefferson.blogspot.com/p/unfinished-business-excerpt.html


This boy is funny!!

“Saw the newsletter and just want to say right here and right now, THANK YOU MY SON.” (Nat Morris)
“I really enjoyed MOTHER CHURCH this past Saturday.  Keep up the good work.” (Kim McKissack)

Kamal S., Mariah H., Dwele, Lanette W., Shawn P., Dez C. after the performance of Cougars (written by Kamal Smith).


I am so happy for all the new productions and producers that are putting  on plays.  DETROIT, please let’s support one another and work on unity because the nation and the world want to see Detroit die. “Dateline” but with God, our city will be great!”



As the Urban theater community expands with a growing number of playwrights, the quality of some theatrical productions seem to be spiraling downward. Not in reference to top notch sound systems or elaborate sets, but rather the combination of the script and the acting as it portrays urban life in a negative way. I like to refer to negative urban theater comedy as “coonery & buffoonery.” I’ve had the opportunity to attend quite a few local productions this year and viewed and analyzed some performances from a different perspective. I didn’t see “good ole fashion slap stick comedy” but rather stereotypical portrayals of African Americans that just seem to push urban theater back into the days of “step and fetch it”. Is getting a laugh from the audience that important, that the writer/director is willing exploit their own just for a good laugh? Are we dumbing down our audience and patrons by expecting them NOT to catch the buffoonery that’s being presented? 

 As playwrights, we have a responsibility to give the audience quality performances through positive and creative interpretations, all while show casing our talented acting community. The acting is what brings our scripts to life. We have to put ourselves in the audience and ask our selves: will the audience find this offensive or funny? I’m aware that you can’t please everybody, but if more than a few people were offended by  negative portrayals of the characters, then it wasn’t really worth it.

I’ll be the first to admit, that when I completed and debuted my first play “Church Folks!?” (yes I know there are quite a few plays with the same title, but each script has different plots/scenarios etc) in 2006, there were some buffoonery elements. I wasn’t familiar with Urban theater as I studied more European/American theater in college. As I began to study and learn more about Urban theater, I realized that the comedy element in A LOT of plays were just plain ignorant! The number of ridiculous “church scenes” where black folks are putting on a full display of coonery and buffoonery by portraying the black church as loud gossiping, gun/knife toting, cursing and making sly remarks as the pastor is portrayed as either a pimp, money hungry, or cheating so called man of God.

Yes the audience laughs but what if there were others in the audience whom had never visited an all black church. Is this the impression we want to leave them with? Ever wonder why other cultures don’t frequent Urban theater more? Would they be held accountable if they internalize the portrayal of Blacks they watched during the performances? Just something to think about. Furthermore, everybody has a story tell, but does every story have to involve a crack addicted uncle, a alcoholic mother, or a drug dealing pimp turned saint? I get it, some of these stories are based on true life, but can we be more creative with our presentation? Just asking.

Let me also say that I LOVE URBAN THEATER! And there are so many talented playwrights across the nation that are putting on great shows. Locally, we have many extremely talented playwrights who have done phenomenal productions that I would patronize more than once. Detroit has the best talent: actors, singers, musicians, playwrights, etc. in the world! However, we have to do better as a people by not just proving something to our own but the rest of the world. Let’s shy away from the coonery and buffoonery on stage. Let’s sharpen our scripts and reveal a more creative, inspiring, and uplifting form of Urban Theater. Let’s show the rest of the world that we can do it bigger and better all while supporting, and encouraging each other. Help the smaller production move into bigger and better things. Let’s stop the self hate and hating on other playwrights. The Urban Playwrights United is a national organization, that’s all about helping Urban playwrights everywhere achieve greatness and bring the very best out of Urban theater so be on the look out as this “team” of talent.. EXPLODE!  

Thank you so much for reading. I welcome your responses to this as well: creativemynd71@yahoo.com. Or simply reply to this newsletter. I love you all and it takes a lot to put on a play and kudos to all of you who have done it and continue to evolve. I’m ready for the next level and I’m depending on you to help support as I still learn and grow. I will continue to support as many as I can. Thanks again, and see you soon!

God Bless,
Lanette M. White
Lanette a.k.a LBoogie is R3born


Masai Jenkins acting career began at the Detroit Repertory Theatre. There he completed two semesters of training between 2006 & 2007. He then went on to make his stage debut in the hit play “Forever the Same” starring Lachelle Griffin. Masai has been in several stage plays. The most recent was leading role in “The Prodigal Son” this was his second appearance as Billy Harper. In December 2010, Masai appeared in the stage play “Chatline” at The Charles H. Wright Museum. 



Shondra Tipler has been performing in various productions and sharing her talents with the local Detroit community over 20 years.  She credits her membership in La Troupe Des Art (an elite group of actors) for allowing her to grow and prosper into the performer she is today.  She is a graduate of Specs Howard School of Broadcast Arts,  holds an Associate of Applied Science degree in Radio and Television Broadcasting, Bachelor of Arts in Community Service and Master of Arts in Public Service Administration.  In addition to being an actress, she is also an accomplished recording artist performing with groups such as Robert Anderson and the Group and Pastor Lydia Wright.  Ms. Tipler has also offered her talents to numerous non-profit organizations within the community.  She most recently appeared in Ain’t Misbehavin (Music Hall, 2009 – Present), Perilous Times (Music Hall), Rent (Ringwald Theater), Affairs (Redford Theater), Daughter’s (Christian Tabernacle) and Hidden Love (Charles H. Wright).  The most significant role, with which Ms. Tipler has been blessed, is that of mother to beautiful twin daughters.  Upcoming performances include Ain’t Misbehavin at the Music Hall Jazz Café in May 2011.


It began January 2011 with a flier that was followed up with a Facebook video post a month or so later.  If memory serves me correct, the images captured a young African-American male running through a wooded area and concluded with the title Cougars on the screen.  Personally, I couldn’t make the connection, but hey, I’ve recently turned 40 and have accepted that some things simply go over my head.  That’s life.  However, the young man (Kamal Smith) in the video was letting the world know something different was headed to Detroit and it was going to be good.

Cougars, an original stage play by Smith, was being promoted on Facebook, on the radio, and local news shows.  Unless you lived under a rock, you had to know about Cougars.  On April 10, a couple friends and I had an opportunity to see what all the buzz was.

The play centered on the lives of three housewives, all of whom were involved in extramarital affairs and the consequences of their choices.  Smith, who’s developed a reputation for producing solid, entertaining productions did not disappoint.  The talented cast led by Smith, which included London Charles (aka Deelishis from Flavor of Love), CoCo (legendary radio personality – WJLB FM 98), Shorty da Prince (radio personality – HOT 102.7), and up-and-coming actor Dez Cortez brought the house down during the play’s 3-day run. Every night was virtually sold-out and there were Facebook accolades a plenty.

The play was serious at times and hilarious at others.  I personally loved Smith’s use of music during scene transitions and the set design was spot-on.  The surprising twist at the end was a nice touch and a welcomed breath of fresh air from the typical “gospel play” fare we’ve come to expect in this town.  Don’t get me wrong, I like gospel plays – heck, I write gospel plays, but I can also appreciate a well-written, well-performed piece that represents other genres as well.  Admittedly, Smith is good at what he does. Give props where they are due.

For novice playwrights, Smith demonstrates how to effectively prepare and promote a stage production and as a playwright and theater patron I appreciate his efforts.  Great job Kamal, I eagerly await your next masterpiece.  I Say It, Now What!?!





Vanessa Lynn’s highly anticipated stage drama “Boss Lady” debuting September 24-25 at Wayne State Community Arts Auditorium for 3 shows. www.vanesssalynn.info

 *Please no calls or emails regarding auditions, please read entire posting for detailed information.


Open Auditions

Monday, May 16, 2011 (call backs on Tues, May 17)

5:00 -7:00 p.m.

Power of Faith Church

24502 Campbell, Warren, MI

(south of 10 mile between Van Dyke and Hoover)


Please note: All minors must be accompanied by an adult.

All candidates must bring updated resume and headshot (no exceptions).  NO MONOLOGUES! Acting Auditions will consist of situational improv scenarios.  Singers & Dancers can perform at 60 second free style selection of your choice.



The past 4 parties

*Yellow & White party*

*Suits & Stilettos Affair*

*Black Party*

*The Designer Party*


*The WhiteOut* is coming!!!

{music for the grown & set free} 

June 18, 2011 7:30pm

The Upper Room {Christian Club}
23821 Grandriver Ave.
Det Mi 48219
June 18, 2011 7:30pm
for Ticket $10.00

add them as a friend, click link: www.facebook.com/bloodwashedgirlz







Lanette a.k.a LBoogie is R3born






It was nice to see you 2 wks ago at the funeral. Selina and David always ask about you.
Kelvyn Ventour