The Broadway Advocacy Coalition—founded in 2016 by members of the Broadway community as a response to racism and police brutality in the U.S.—has announced that Chesray Dolpha has joined the organization as the new artistic director.
Tina: The Tina Turner Musical associate director Zhailon Levingston, who previously served as BAC’s creative director, has been promoted to director of industry initiatives. In this new role, Levingston will be responsible for spearheading the organization’s work within the theatre industry, including its Reimagining Equitable Productions workshops and connecting theatre artists to BAC’s advocacy work within the criminal justice space.
Dolpha and Levingston began serving in their new roles February 22.
Co-founder Britton Smith, who continues in his role as president of BAC, said in a statement, “In my four years of service at The Broadway Advocacy Coalition, I’ve witnessed an incredible transformation of this organization from a Facebook post to a notably respected organization of real impact—and have been transformed myself by the work. I am excited to celebrate Zhailon and Chesray’s leadership and vision and am proud to forever champion on for BAC, its founders, and its mission. I’ll continue to support them and the organization in my role as president.”
"I'm thrilled to be joining the Broadway Advocacy Coalition team; the work they've done is inspiring, and the work we'll do is exciting,” added Dolpha. “I couldn't be happier with how the stars have aligned!"
“Working with BAC has been a joy of mine since my first year in New York five years ago and to now be in a position whereby I get to pull from everything I’ve learned year by year and dreaming up emergent ways to move us forward feels like the most perfect intersection for me to be working in,” stated Levingston.
Dolpha has worked with TDF, St. Ann’s Warehouse, and The Dream Center in Harlem. She currently serves as co-chair of the Taskforce on Equity and Inclusion for the New York City Arts in Education Roundtable and previously participated in BAC’s Theater of Change course at Columbia University.
BAC's recent work includes gathering a virtual crowd of over 11,000 participants for the three-day forum Broadway for Black Lives Matter, launching the Cody Renard Richard Scholarship program and the Artivism Fellowship program, along with the inaugural Broadway VS, and continuing their partnership with Columbia Law School through their full-semester course, The Theater of Change: Reimagining Justice Through Abolition.