Local HIV/AIDS outreach and arts organization Brave Soul Collective (BSC) kicks off its 15th year and virtual performance season with BSCFifteen, a week-long artist residency at The Kennedy Center April 26 to 30, 2021. This special engagement in The Reach is an opportunity for a small group of BSC artists—seven actors, three directors, and five playwrights—to workshop, rehearse, perform, and record artistic content in a safe, socially distanced performance space. For exclusive virtual access to footage from the week’s activities, RSVP here.
BSC’s all-virtual programming last year included Question Marks, an artistic response to nationwide racial injustice, and #BlackMenFeel, a three-part virtual performance and discussion series. The artists of BSC return this spring to celebrate 15 years of “Breakin’ the Silence, Buildin’ the Bridges, Bringin’ Light to the Truth“ with a host of special events and performances.
Additionally, a special 15th-anniversary retrospective is slated to premiere virtually Saturday, May 29, 2021, commemorating the date in 2006 that BSC hosted its first public community event, Brave Soul Saturday, as part of DC Black Pride Weekend.
Immediately following the anniversary retrospective, BSC will present an all-new virtual theater performance in observance of National HIV Testing Day Sunday, June 27, 2021, in partnership with longtime collaborators The Counter Narrative Project (CNP). Throughout the remainder of 2021, BSC will present monthly virtual discussion and performance events, all leading up to an anniversary virtual gala fundraising event in December 2021.
All of BSC’s 2021 virtual anniversary programming is being presented to provide support to the BSC audience “as we all navigate the conditions, uncertainty, and difficulties brought on by the pandemic, especially for the artist community,” said BSC Artistic and Managing Director Monte J. Wolfe. “After an uphill albeit ultimately triumphant year of artistic output in 2020 amid the pandemic, we as Black Queer artists must continue to tell our stories and honor our gifts and talents by sharing them with the world at large, at a time when arts, education, and inspiration are more necessary than ever before.”
About Brave Soul Collective
Brave Soul Collective (BSC) is an arts, education, and outreach organization with a focus on HIV/AIDS, and issues affecting the lives of LGBTQ people, through the performing and healing arts. BSC is committed to encouraging artistic freedom, expression, and creativity in members of the arts, and LGBTQIA+ communities. BSC was founded spring of 2006 in Washington, DC, by Monte J. Wolfe, Erik Chambers, and Tim’m T. West, all of whom are not only are artists but also same-gender-loving Black men who happen to be living with HIV. BSC has performed and presented workshops at various HIV/AIDS conferences, LGBTQ Pride, and community events since 2006. For more information, visit: wearebravesouls.com.
Monte J. Wolfe is one of two curators of a publishing project called PASSAGES: An Anthology Celebrating Black Queer Existence. For more information, including submission guidelines, visit the project website or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Deadline to submit work for consideration is June 30, 2021.