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Ubuntu Theater Project Goes Underground With Year-Round Shows

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Ubuntu is more than just a word, its an African philosophy inspired by connection between humans.

“Ubuntu: I am a person through other people. My humanity is tied to yours.

I am because we are.”

The Ubuntu Theater Project is founded on that philosophy, as is explained in detail on their website:

“Theater has the power to foster ubuntu and address the prejudice at the root of our social dysfunction where it lives – in the hearts and minds of people.”

The collaborative project has been around in Oakland since 2012 and until now they were best known for several plays they produced and participation in theater festivals around the Bay Area. But the collection of artists that make up the group are taking things to next level with the introduction of Ubuntu Underground, which will allow their self-produced storytellers to connect with more fellow humans throughout the year at their 4th Street workspace in Berkeley.

A 2013 Ubuntu Theater Project production. Photo courtesy of Ella Baker Center for Human Rights

According to a press release issued March 9, the Ubuntu Underground programming will kick off with “Sarafael,” a relevant and emotionally-charged collaboration with The Forum. The show focuses on sexual assault accusations, described as an “ethereal and explosive drama” that “tackles the struggle of communication and repression.”

“In a world craving more honest discussion about sexual assault, the piece attempts to deepen the conversation about the limitations of expressing trauma especially when using the narratives of our times.”

“Sarafael” will run from March 21-March 31 and tickets can be scored online here for Thursday-Sunday show offerings at $15-$45 per person, but people showing up to buy tickets at the door won’t be turned away if they’re short on cash.

As their website explains:

“We believe in radical inclusivity and offer every professional production at a pay-what-you-can price – removing barriers to access for our audiences.”

We hope you’ll get out there and support independent theater by checking out one of Ubuntu’s upcoming shows, guaranteed to expand your mind and your dialogue.

“Theater has the power to foster ubuntu and address the prejudice at the root of our social dysfunction where it lives – in the hearts and minds of people.”

Disclosure: “Sarafael” writer Julius Rea is a dear old friend of mine and he’s so cool, you’ll want to be his friend, too.



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Nik Wojcik - East Bay Editor

Nik Wojcik - East Bay Editor

Journalist, editor, student, single mom to a pack of wolves, foodie, music lover, resident smart ass, and champion of vulgarity and human kindness.