Details about event

The Columbus Black Theatre Festival (CBTF) celebrates its 10th Anniversary this July 9th and 10th in Central Ohio. The theme this year is Speaking Truth That Heals. Mine 4 God Productions (M4GP) kicks off our tenth year of bringing the Columbus Black Theatre Festival (CBTF) to Central Ohio with a free Anniversary Recognition & Celebration event held this July 9th at the Columbus Metropolitan Library, Main Auditorium, from 1:30 to 3:30 PM.

The CBTF is produced by Mine 4 God Productions and has brought playwrights and actors from around the world to Columbus, Ohio for the past ten years. This year the festival is sponsored by the Greater Columbus Arts Council, Wild Goose Creative and Lady Butterflies-Ohio.

Over a hundred and twenty plays were read blindly by readers who represent the theater and business community of Ohio. The six short plays selected are speaking truth in regard to homelessness, dyslexia, child abandonment, past regrets, self-identity, self-esteem, mental illness and inclusion. “This year follows last year’s theme of “Say Something it Might Change Something” to help continue the important discussions that are needed to heal our nation from the many areas in need.” says the founder and Artistic Director of the festival, Julie Whitney-Scott.

Each play brings a strong message starting with the The Wonder of You, written by Bara Swain. This is the story of a young girl and a stranger who meet at a bus stop on the corner of Magnolia and Vine in Chamblee, Georgia. Is it magic or fate? The director, Ariel Wiles and actors Kadence Wiles and Baxter Whiteside bring this story to life and leave the audience “wondering.”

See, Invisible, written by Peter Anthony Fields and directed by Ariel Wiles, takes us to another bus stop in a small town in Ohio. Aubrey, performed by Kelli Clark, a middle-age grocery store clerk and Martin, performed by Zachery Franklin, a streetwise eighteen-year-old, clash in a conversation over opposing opinions and ideologies, which leads up to a disturbing revelation. Watching it all, seemingly unnoticed is a Homeless Woman, performed by Julie Whitney-Scott. Who’s invisible of the three?

FRAGILE by Dana Leslie Goldstein and directed by Benjamin Hartwig is set in Rennie’s (Zachery Franklin) beloved comic book shop. Rennie is on the verge of losing it all. When Alana (Vianey Rodriquez) walks in, everything starts to change. Secret identities are revealed, but it’s going to take more  than super-strength to forge a new origin story.                                                                     

Casting Call by Julie Whitney-Scott is directed by Benjamin Hartwig. It’s time to cast for a new theatre play and the director (Eddy Williams) is determined to just sell tickets while the rest of the production team try to convince him that his way is outdated and not beneficial to the actors who audition. Mackenzie Biemer (Rachel) Gerald Sinclair (Daniel) Nikhil Makhija (Tony) Baxter Whitehead (Baxter) Lynnix Price (Kandy) and Theo White (LeRoy) are the production team and actors auditioning for a role. Who gets the part?

The festival keeps Speaking Truth That Heals as it presents Where Winter Rests on a Wounded Heart by Evonne Fields-Gould. This play touches on the many challenges that a woman with dyslexia dealt with throughout her relationships with her husband (Jerry March,) her children (Theo White & Marian Pina) and the world in general. Clair (Vianey Rodriquez) shares her story of her impairment and how it affected her self-esteem with phone counselor (Eddy Williams) and how it has led her to this critical moment in her life. Does Clair find her voice?

The CBTF ends the festival of plays with the powerful monologue An Open Letter to My Brown Skin, written by Angelle Whavers.  Julie Whitney-Scott directs and performs this gripping multi-media “love letter” to herself and other Black and Brown people.

We invite you to celebrate with us, our supporters, the playwrights, actors, directors, past and present, and everyone that has been a part of the festival throughout the years. 

At the Anniversary Celebration there will be food, drinks and smooth jazz music from the Elliott/Baccus Duo. Certificates will be given to our supporters, sponsors and financial supporters We also will recognize past board and team members and several others who have supported us throughout the years.

Afterwards join us at one of the four shows starting with Columbus Performing Arts Center Van Fleet Theater on July 9th 4:00 & 7:30 PM and the next day at the Abbey Theater of Dublin July 10th 3:00 & 7:00 PM.  Register for the free celebration at

For more information about the playwrights, actors and how to get your tickets to join us this year go to or email us at