History in Pictures

History in Pictures 2017-05-31T17:34:57+00:00

The North Carolina Black Repertory Company enjoys a rich history of advancing Black theatre on a local, national, and international level.  Journey through our timeline below which highlights a few of NCBRC’s moments in time.

History of the NC Black Repertory Company in Pictures

1979
1979

NCBRC Established

The North Carolina Repertory Company, Inc. was established in 1979 in Winston Salem, North Carolina.  According to Founder Larry Leon Hamlin, “The first three years were most important.  They were the formative years.  We managed to create an audience because..Read More
1979

Living Room Theatre

In December 1979, Hamlin created a new concept called Living Room Theatre in order to continually market the company.  The company began performing monologues and scenes from various plays in the living rooms of families in the community.  NCBRC hoped..Read More
1985
1985

Scene from Home

A scene from the 1985 production of Home starring Lawrence Evans, Perri Gafney and Marjorie Johnson (background) (Photo courtesy of the Winston-Salem Journal).
1986
1986

Day of Absence

Larry Leon Hamlin was the mayor in Day of Absence by Douglas Turner Ward (Courtesy of Larry Leon Hamlin)
1989
1989

First National Black Theatre Festival

The first National Black Theatre Festival was held in Winston-Salem, NC on August 14-20, 1989.  It was a milestone of completion, a zenith point for Larry Leon Hamlin and NCBRC.  The theme for the first Festival was “A Celebration and..Read More
1989

First National Black Theatre Festival

Dr. Maya Angelou served as the first national chairperson for the first National Black Theatre Festival. Photo by Steven Dunwell (Courtesy of Larry Leon Hamlin). Dr. Angelou wrote the following  manifesto for her support of the Festival: “…Now on August..Read More
1989

First National Black Theatre Festival

Special guest celebrities at the first National Black Theatre Festival included Oprah Winfrey, Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis, Lou Gossett, Cicely Tyson,Esther Rolle,  James Earl Jones, and Roscoe Lee Browne.
1989

Playwright August Wilson Honored

At the opening night gala of the first National Black Theatre Festival, Larry Leon Hamlin and Dr. Maya Angelou presented Broadway playwright August Wilson with the Garland Anderson Playwright Award. Wilson accepted his award by giving honor to his grandfather..Read More
1991
1991

Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee

Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee were co-chairs of the 1991 National Black Theatre Festival (Courtesy of Larry Leon Hamlin).  Ossie Davis wrote: “Live theatre reminds us that there were words we spoke before we could write them as concepts.  We..Read More
1991

Paul Robeson

Avery Brooks portrayed the role of Paul Robeson at the 1991 National Black Theatre Festival (Courtesy of Larry Leon Hamlin).
1993
1993

Della Reese

Della Reese, co-chair of the 1993 National Black Theatre Festival, chats with youth in downtown Winston-Salem.
1993

John Amos

John Amos stars in his one-man show, Halley’s Comet (Courtesy of Larry Leon Hamlin).
1993

Sidney Poitier, Roland Watts, and August Wilson

Sidney Poitier (1993 co-chair), Roland Watts, and August Wilson greet one another at the 1993 National Black Theatre Festival (Courtesy of The Chronicle).
1993

Harry Belafonte

Harry Belafonte, co-chair of the 1993 National Black Theatre Festival, addresses the crowd at the Opening Night Gala (Courtesy Larry Leon Hamlin)
1994
1994

Protest Through the Arts

The NC Black Repertory Company protested against the racist review of the whiteface comedies Day of Absence and Old Judge Mose is Dead by marching in front of the Winston-Salem Journal in 1994.
1995
1995

Sylvia Sprinkle-Hamlin and Billy Dee Williams

Sylvia Sprinkle-Hamlin (Mrs. Marvtastic) embraces Billy Dee Williams, co-chair of the 1995 National Black Theatre Festival (Courtesy of Larry Leon Hamlin).