Voicing Philadelphia, ‘Young Money,’ and Diwali on the Pier

The Weekly Roundup, November 3-9

3 minute read
Ang Bey, a Black nonbinary actor, is dressed in a bright yellow wig, white faux fur jacket, and sequin bra.
Ang Bey stars as Kila-T in Azuka Theatre's 'Young Money.' (Photo courtesy of Azuka Theatre.)

This week offers a pair of events that capture the city of Philadelphia with different lenses. Broad Street Ministry has an online film fest with stories that explore the impact of poverty in the city while the new Imperfect Gallery Studio hosts artists Terrell Halsey and Lyrispect for a multi-disciplinary, interactive exhibit that looks into the evolution of Philly and its people.

On the other hand, Azuka Theatre premieres its new show Young Money from playwright Erlina Ortiz. Diwali is at the pier courtesy of Usiloquy Dance Designs, and Martha Graham Cracker has the ticket to a night of cabaret.

Voices From Broad Street Ministry
Through November 24
Streaming online

It’s no secret: Philadelphia is the nation’s poorest big city. But what may be “secrets” are the faces that are affected the most by that truth. Broad Street Ministry opened a new film series at the end of October, Voices from Broad Street Ministry, that “turns the camera on individuals who share, in their own words, their aspirations, loss, love, and life experiences.” But the festival makes it very clear: “this is a storytelling project about what people have, not about what they don’t have,” according to festival director Glenn Holsten.

While there was a live event in October, the festival has since gone virtual. A new film is uploaded through November, completing the series with 21 entries. The films are free to stream online.

Young Money
Through November 21
Louis Bluver Theatre at The Drake, 302 South Hicks Street, Philadelphia

Azuka Theatre is opening its doors for live theater again with the world premiere of Young Money. The show from Philly playwright Erlina Ortiz, Young Money tells the story of Tomasina (also known as Kila-T, played by Ang Bey), who is hip-hop’s hottest new artist, and Gardenia (Johanna Tolentino), a custodian who got laid off at her banking job and is now working for Kila-T. The two are forced together after an attack during one of Kila’s concerts and discover they have a lot to learn from each other.

Call Home: Voices of an Evolving Philadelphia
Through November 13 on Thursdays-Saturdays, 1-6pm
Imperfect Gallery Studio, 5547 Germantown Avenue, 2A

As part of the Painted Bride Art Center’s “Power to the Prompt” conversation series, Call Home is an interactive multimedia exhibition brought forth by street photographer Terrell Halsey and writer/multi-disciplinary artist Nina Elizabeth “Lyrispect” Ball. The exhibition combines photography, poetry, sound, and more to paint the landscape of Philadelphians and the evolution of the city.

If you can’t make it out, please be sure to check out their work online. Halsey has beautiful projects on his website and Instagram, and Lyrispect has poetry, performances, and books available online.

Diwali on the Pier
Saturday, November 6, 2-5pm
Cherry Street Pier, 121 North Christopher Columbus Boulevard, Philadelphia

Usiloquy Dance Designs is hosting its first ever Diwali event this weekend at the pier. Join them in celebrating Indian dance and music alongside the dulcet sitar of Devi Majeske and the rangoli mandala from Vidya Shyamsundar.

The Martha Graham Cracker Cabaret & Johnny Showcase and the Mystic Ticket
Saturday, November 6, 8pm
Union Transfer, 1026 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia

Get ready for a night of cabaret as Martha Graham Cracker and her band take the stage with Johnny Showcase & The Mystic Ticket—an absurdist funk-soul-rock ensemble. Showcase is coming off of a run on America’s Got Talent. Additionally, brass band SnackTime Philly will open for the performance.

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