Tabia African-American Theatre Ensemble

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Tabia, based in San Jose, and is in its twenty -sixth season of performances in the Bay Area. The name Tabia, is a Swahili word for “talented,” and represents the creativity, devotion and diversity of the Ensemble’s pool of artists. The Ensemble has earned a reputation for presenting high quality productions that celebrate and explore the African-American experience ranging from touching dramas to clever comedies.

Tabia African-American Theatre Ensemble consists of a dedicated group of individuals who have been involved in the theatre community for the past (25) years. Tabia is one of the performing arts groups under San Jose Multicultural Artists Guild, a non–profit organization established in 1990. Viera Whye has been the Artistic Director for Tabia since its inception in 1985. Tabia’s founding members were Ann Johnson, Robert Parker, Rudy Morris, Arlene Sagun, Adaku Davis, and Viera Whye.

Tabia’s purpose is to present plays written by and about African-Americans, and the African influence and culture throughout the world. We bring the unique creativity of African-Americans to the stage that have universal themes, enlighten, educate and entertain our audiences with powerful messages and spirit. Tabia is the only group in the Southbay that provides consistent opportunity for African-Americans to gain visibility and experience on the stage.

Our goal is to produce high quality, thought provoking, professional theatre that enriches the lives of our audiences; and fosters positive relationships and understanding among people of varied backgrounds. Tabia produces stage productions and also performs as a traveling troupe, taking its touring Black History Show to schools, festivals, corporations, churches, and conferences throughout California. Tabia’s traveling show is a dramatic presentation that is enlightening, educational and highly entertaining; it consists of the presentation of historical figures, poetry, song, and dance to convey the contributions and culture of African-Americans.

Tabia’s core group members are Cheryl Bennett-Scales, Glenna Brambill-Williams, Carrie Farley, Jeff Jones, Ann Johnson, Donna McCraney, Sharon Moore, Patrice Payne, Arlene Sagun, Sonya Stamper, Ayisha White, and Viera Whye. Associate members are Alysha English, Postoria Aguirre, Yvette Glasgow, and Hedwig Gayle Rucker. Resident Director is Buddy Butler.