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WBAA Arts Spotlight: Wabash College Theatre

Several theater performances take place every year at Wabash College. The African Company Presents Richard III is the next play. It concerns "a true incident in 1821 in New York City: A troupe of free African-American actors mounted a Shakespeare production that attained minor critical and financial success until a larger white company, the Park Theatre, connived to shut it down to prevent competition." WBAA's John Clare spoke to director Ansley Valentine about the production.

Learn more here. The production runs April 17-20.

Ansley Valentine is a professional director and choreographer for the theatre and musical theatre and an educator with experience teaching professionally at the collegiate level and in both public and private performing arts high schools. Ansley is currently a proud member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC).

Ansley is a graduate of the Arts Midwest Minorities in Arts Administration Fellowship, a program funded by the Ford Foundation to increase minority representation in leadership roles at American not-for-profit organizations. After his fellowship at The Cleveland Play House in marketing and development, he went on to serve as Theatre School Director at Studio Arena Theatre, a LORT C theatre in Buffalo, New York. Ansley oversaw a wide variety of youth arts programming in Western New York. The Theatre School’s flagship program, The Creative Empowerment Program, sought to teach inner-city youth non-violent conflict resolution skills as well as playmaking. The program was consistently funded by the New York State Council for the Arts. Other programs he maintained included interactive arts education as well as touring shows to schools unable to travel to Buffalo to see a production. An accomplished playwright, Studio Arena Theatre School produced educational tours through Western New York and Pennsylvania of many of his shows. Titles included the docu-drama Lest We Forget the Holocaust and the original rock musical Antigone with music by Dan Acquisto.

Ansley holds an M.F.A. in Directing from Indiana University and a B.A. in Theatre from Wabash College. He is a co-founder and the producing artistic director of Ohio Youth Ensemble Stage, a professionally-managed summer youth theatre program that celebrates diversity, inclusion and equal opportunity for all students no matter their ability.

John Nasukaluk Clare is comfortable behind a microphone, streaming video or playing violin. A former broadcaster for NPR, John has previously worked with Voice of America, the Canadian Broadcast Corporation and stations in Texas, Kansas, Nevada, California, and Pennsylvania. In 2005, Clare earned the Deems Taylor Award from ASCAP for radio broadcasting, citing his work on 20/20 Hearing. Having performed with famed tenors Luciano Pavarotti and Andrea Bocelli, John has worked with the Mozart Festival Texas, Mid Texas Symphony, Nevada Chamber Symphony, Shreveport Symphony, Abilene Philharmonic and Wichita Symphony Orchestra.
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