Covenant
by ​York Walker
directed by Tamilla Woodard
dramaturg: John Glore
Pacific Playwrights Festival
Streaming
April 26, 2021 - May 2, 2021

When he returns home to his small Georgia town, rumors fly that blues guitarist Johnny “Honeycomb” James may have sold his soul to the devil to attain his musical genius. But in this twisty folk-horror drama, jealousy, distrust and superstition determine Honeycomb’s fate—even if the devil does play a part.

This reading is no longer available for purchase.

The Pacific Playwrights Festival is all about the writers. #PPFPlaywrights, an off shoot of SCR’s #Commissioned video series, features the five wordsmiths and one composer who contributed the work included in the 23rd festival. For Covenant, dramaturg John Glore chats with Playwright York Walker. They’ll be talking about the play, and there may be some spoilers. So, if you don’t want any secrets revealed, you may want to screen the reading before watching the interview. If you purchase tickets for Covenant, you’ll automatically be sent the link for #PPFPlaywrights.

Listen to our Spotify playlist of songs that inspired the 2021 PPF playwrights.

Walker

York Walker (Playwright) is an award-winning writer based in Harlem, New York. He is the inaugural recipient of the Colman Domingo Award from Vineyard Theatre, where he is currently an artist-in-residence. He is also a member of Marcus Gardley’s New Wave Writer’s Workshop. His work includes Holcomb & Hart (Victory Gardens Theater’s New Plays For A New Year Festival), Asè (Harlem9, Harlem Stage and Lucille Lortel Theatre’s Consequences digital series), The Séance (winner of the John Singleton Short Film Competition, 48 Hours… in Harlem), Covenant (Fire This Time Festival, Access Theatre’s 4 Flights Up Festival, Arizona Theatre Company’s Digital Play Series), White Shoes (Fire This Time Festival), Summer of ’63 (The Actors Company Theatre’s New TACTics Festival, Actors Theatre of Louisville’s Apprentice Reading Series) and Of Dreams to Come (American Conservatory Theatre’s New Work Series). York received his MFA in acting from American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco.

Learn more about the production, cast & creative team in the program.

Cast
Alexandre,-Toree

Toree Alexandre (Ruthie) would like to sincerely thank God, her mother, grandmother and sister for all of their love and support! She would also like to thank Tamilla Woodard and South Coast Repertory for bringing her in to be a part of York Walker’s incredible play. Originally hailing from Yonkers, NY, Alexandre is a graduate of Point Park University with a BFA in acting. She is a plant-based poet sending love, light and lift to all! She was last seen in Go Down, Moses with Brave New World Repertory. You can catch her on Netflix in Marvel’s “Luke Cage” and Oz Rodriguez’s “Vampires vs the Bronx,” or rollerblading with her little sister alongside the beach! 


Ford,-Israel-Erron

Israel Erron Ford (Johnny "Honeycomb" James), an Atlanta native, joined the company of the recently nominated (for 11 Ovation Awards) production of Stephen King’s IT: A Musical Parody (Rockwell Table and Stage) shortly after moving to L.A. He’s a recent MFA graduate from the Yale School of Drama, where his credits include Hamlet, as the title character, Jeremy O. Harris’ original production of Slave Play and Tori Sampson’s If Pretty Hurts Ugly Must Be a Muhfucka. His other credits include Father Comes Home From the Wars and the critically-acclaimed afro-futurist production of Twelfth Night (Yale Repertory Theatre); In the Red and Brown Water (Yale Cabaret); Antony+Cleopatra (Yale Summer Cabaret); Scheherazade (FringeNYC) and Black Nativity (Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theatre). Ford also holds a BFA in musical theatre from Carnegie Mellon University.


Martinez,-Kwana

Kwana Martinez (Mama) is delighted to return to SCR and PPF! She has appeared at SCR in several Pacific Playwrights Festivals and numerous NewSCRipts readings and as Julie in the world premiere of Mr. Wolf by Rajiv Joseph (2015). In the past year, she appeared in Those Days Are Over (as Zora), directed by Jennifer Chang for the Ashland New Plays Festival, was nominated for Best Actress by The Official Latino Film Festival for her work in Bonito Secrets, and started the year off by playing Eurydice in the Eurydice Found Festival, a collaboration between the LA Opera and the Antaeus Theatre Company, where she is a member. Her other California stage appearances include Center Theatre Group, Pasadena Playhouse, The Old Globe, Ensemble Theatre of Santa Barbara, Laguna Playhouse, San Jose Repertory Theatre and North Coast Repertory. In New York, she has worked at La MaMa, New York Theatre Workshop and Tribeca Theatre Lab; her other work includes Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Commonwealth Shakespeare, American Repertory Theatre, Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Arizona Theatre Company and the Alley Theatre. You can spot her in numerous commercials, on television and in film. She is an alumna of both Harvard University and Vassar College. kwanamartinez.com


Robinson,-Ashley-Denise

Ashley Denise Robinson (Avery) has previously worked with director Tamilla Woodard at Actors Theatre of Louisville, where Robinson was an apprentice. Her other theatre credits include productions with Local Theater Company, the cell, Majestic Theater Company, Primary Stages and Washington Shakespeare Company. She received her BA in theatre from the University of Maryland, College Park, and her MA in classical acting from The London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. She’s a published author and a playwright, who directed her two-woman show, superfecunda, in 2019 in Santa Monica, Calif. Robinson stars in the office-comedy web series, “Taking Stock,” which can be seen on MailChimp Presents. 


Walker,-Akilah

Akilah A. Walker (Violet) is a classically trained actor and filmmaker who is moved by transformation, collaboration and nuanced storytelling that explores the lives of women and people of color. Walker recently was seen in the highly selective 2020 ABC Discovers Talent Showcase. She was seen as Paulina in Berkeley Repertory Theatre’s production of School Girls: or The African Mean Girls Play (2020), which had a streaming run on BroadwayHD.com, and performed with Aurora Theater Company as Bunny in Detroit ’67, nominated for the Best Supporting Actress Award by the Bay Area’s Critics Circle. Originally from Atlanta, Ga., Walker is a recent graduate of American Conservatory Theater (MFA, acting) and is also a proud alumna of Fordham University (BA, acting). akilahwalker.com IG/Twitter: @Akthewayy

Creative Team

Tamilla Woodard (Director) was recently named one of 50 Women to Watch on Broadway. She is co-artistic director of Working Theater (New York); founder of the site-specific international partnership, PopUP Theatrics; and associate director of the Tony Award-winning Hadestown on Broadway. Prior to joining Working Theater, Woodard served as the BOLD Associate Artistic Director at WP Theater. She has directed at theatres nationally and internationally including at WP Theater, Baltimore Center Stage, American Conservatory Theater, Classical Theatre of Harlem, The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts with TheaterWorksUSA and Cleveland Public Theatre. Recent highlights include the world premiere of Donetta Lavinia Gray’s award-winning Where We Stand (WP Theater), Caryl Churchill’s Top Girls (A.C.T. Geary Theater) and the critically acclaimed immersive off-Broadway production of 3/Fifths by James Scruggs. Currently, Woodard is represented online with the visionary, interactive digital tour of American Dreams, which she directs and developed with Leila Buck. Her upcoming work includes Weightless, a Rock Opera by The Killbanes (WP Theater) and Working: A Musical, an under-the-tent showcase by Stephen Schwartz (Alliance Theatre). Her work has been recognized with an Off Broadway Alliance Award and a Lucille Lortel Award nomination. She is a graduate of the Yale School of Drama, where she also teaches and, on July 1, becomes chair of the Acting Department. Tamilla.com. 


John Glore (Dramaturg) has been SCR’s associate artistic director since 2005, following five years as resident dramaturg for LA’s Center Theatre Group. He previously served as SCR’s literary manager from 1985 to 2000. He has worked as dramaturg on more than 100 SCR productions, workshops and readings including the Pacific Playwrights Festival world premieres of Mr. Wolf by Rajiv Joseph and Office Hour by Julia Cho. His ongoing collaboration with Culture Clash has included co-writing new adaptations of two plays by Aristophanes, The Birds (co-produced by SCR and Berkeley Repertory Theatre, 1998) and Peace (Getty Villa, 2009) and serving as dramaturg on five other Culture Clash productions. His own plays have been produced at SCR, Arena Stage, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Berkeley Repertory Theatre and other theatres across the country.


Justin Krumb (Film Producer) has roots that run deep within SCR. Since graduating with his BA from CSU-Long Beach, he has immersed himself in the evolving world of video and film production. Focusing his efforts on feature documentary (Minds In The Water), broadcast television (First Hand, The Surfer’s Journal) and live productions (Love Loud, Imagine Dragons, ReCode) has allowed Krumb to see all sides of producing digital media. Spanning multiple decades, he has worked on a variety of documentary and commercial projects, in countries around the globe that range in subject matter from travel, music, sports, and culture. Krumb earned the honor of an Emmy Award for Best Documentary (Next Wave) and film festival awards that included Best Environmental Film, Best Original Score, Audience Appreciation and a Top Emerging Directors designation from AmDocs Film Festival (Transparentsea). He recently reconnected with SCR to produce film works of plays (Outside Mullingar, A Shot Rang Out and Red Riding Hood). The opportunity to bring the Pacific Playwrights Festival plays and a musical to the screen in a new and inclusive way, and to share the talents of these amazing artists, continues to add to the rewarding career path he has taken.


Kathryn Davies (Stage Manager) previously stage-managed The Velveteen Rabbit, Poor Yella Rednecks, Sugar Plum Fairy, Orange, The Roommate, All the Way, Future Thinking, Red, Vietgone, The Whipping Man, Tartuffe, Reunion, Trudy and Max in Love, The Motherf**ker with the Hat, How to Write a New Book for the Bible, Sight Unseen, Topdog/Underdog, In the Next Room or the vibrator play, Doctor Cerberus, Ordinary Days, Our Mother’s Brief Affair and The Injured Party—all at SCR. Her favorite credits include The Wars at the Grand Theatre; Dividing the Estate at Dallas Theater Center; La Bohème at Tulsa Opera; The Mystery of Irma Vep at The Old Globe; Les Contes D’Hoffmann at Hawaii Opera Theatre; Of Mice and Men at Neptune Theatre; The Dresser at Manitoba Theatre Centre; Skylight at Tarragon Theatre; To Kill a Mockingbird at Citadel Theatre; and The Designated Mourner at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Davies also worked as head theatre manager at the Toronto International, Dubai International, AFI, TCM and Los Angeles Film festivals.


The Actors and Stage Managers employed in this production are members of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.

​HONORARY PRODUCERS
​Sally Anderson & Tom Rogers
Laurie & Steve Duncan
Kristen & Adrian Griggs
Samuel & Tammy Tang
Tod & Linda White

 
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