THE FRONT PORCH ARTS COLLECTIVE
ANNOUNCES ITS 2022-2023 SEASON
INCLUDING ITS FIRST SOLO-PRODUCED PRODUCTION
The Porch’s 2022-2023 season includes a Broadway hit and a new romantic comedy – two powerful and funny plays featuring BIPOC writers and artists
The Front Porch Arts Collective announces its two-play 2022-2023 season, which includes Broadway hit Chicken & Biscuits and romantic comedy K-I-S-S-I-N-G.
Performances will begin in the fall of 2022, with one production taking the stage at the Wimberly Theatre in the Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA in Boston’s South End.
Additional venue, dates, and ticketing information will be available soon.
The season will open in the fall of 2022 with Chicken & Biscuits, a raucous family comedy that made its Broadway debut in 2021.
Written by playwright Douglas Lyons (Pirates! at The Huntington, “Fraggle Rock” on Apple TV), the story begins when the Jenkins family reunites to bury their father — hopefully without killing each other in the process.
But any hopes for a peaceful reunion unravel when a family secret shows up at the funeral.
Hilarious and heartwarming, the show was in the midst of a four-month run on Broadway when it closed early due to the pandemic.
Lyons is thrilled to see it reopen on a stage in Boston, a city that played a key role in his own career.
"In 2009, I got my equity card onstage in The Huntington’s Pirates! To return, 12 years later, a playwright with the Boston premiere of Chicken & Biscuits, is nothing short of a full circle blessing,” said Lyons. “I have even more pride in knowing that a Black-owned theatre company, The Front Porch Arts Collective, will deliver the story with grace, vision, and love. Chicken & Biscuits is an offering of Black healing and joy. I can't wait to see how Boston audiences eat it up."
After co-producing previous productions in partnership with companies such as Central Square Theater, Greater Boston Stage Company, Lyric Stage Company and SpeakEasy Stage Company, Chicken & Biscuits marks the first show that The Porch will produce entirely on its own.
Next, is their first co-production with The Huntington, The Porch will present K-I-S-S-I-N-G at the Calderwood Pavilion’s Wimberly Theatre in Boston.
Written by Lenelle Moïse, the play tells the story of Lala, who makes fine art on the back of pizza boxes.
A sweet and sticky summer inspires her to romance Dani, a budding feminist and Albert, his smooth-talking twin. What’s good? Love or lust? Either way, she’ll find her muse.
“I think of K-I-S-S-I-N-G as a date-night for revolutionary thinkers. Black love lives matter, too,” said Moïse, who grew up in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It was during her time as a Huntington Playwriting Fellow from 2012-2014 that Moïse said she felt compelled to write about the community that raised her.
“These are Boston bred characters. In many ways, K-I-S-S-I-N-G is a love letter to my arts teachers at Cambridge Public Schools. They nurtured my creative fire,” she said. “I came of age in the multicultural nineties. My theatre friends ‘rolled deep’ in a wide range of ethnicities, class backgrounds, and gender expressions. This play reflects that energy.”
Directed by Dawn M. Simmons (Pipeline, The Nora Theater/WAM Theatre), the Co-Producing Artistic Director at The Porch, K-I-S-S-I-N-G is an optimistic story about young love and big dreams.
"Lenelle's play is sensual, romantic, and a love letter to the city that The Front Porch calls home,” said Simmons. “I am honored to lead the creative team and work with Lenelle to bring her world to life.”
Moïse's play will be the first co-production of The Porch and The Huntington since the two theatre companies established a new partnership in 2021.
Since September, The Porch has been in residence at The Huntington, allowing both companies to learn and grow from each other while fostering new opportunities for BIPOC artists.
“Just months into this residency, the partnership with The Huntington has yielded so much,” says Maurice Parent, who is the Co-Producing Artistic Director alongside Simmons at The Porch.
“We’ve advanced our strategic plan, crafted a budget that reflects both immediate and long-term goals, and received financial support that allows us to focus on this work with renewed vigor. We couldn’t be more proud of this piece and the growth our company is experiencing through our work with The Huntington.”
Kevin T. Baldwin is a member of the American Theatre Critics Association (ATCA)
ABOUT THE FRONT PORCH ARTS COLLECTIVE
The Front Porch Arts Collective is a Black theatre company committed to advancing racial equity in Boston through theatre.
Now in residence with The Huntington, the Front Porch Arts Collective seeks to create a place where perspectives and experiences of Black people are no longer novelty, but an integral part of the global conversation, and to build programs that make the entire theatrical landscape more reflect the diversity of the city.
By creating an atmosphere where people see the world through differing experiences, we hope to foster greater understanding of the human condition that ultimately contributes to tolerance and empathy in our world.
Our namesake signifies a communal spirit, inspiring us to serve communities of color and produce art that is inclusive of all communities and welcoming to all audiences, to inspire a more tolerant and inclusive Boston.
Our core values are cultural inclusion, community advancement; and impactful legacy