"A Presenter of Theatre Arts to the New York Community Since 1987."

Lorraine Hansberry’s To Be Young, Gifted And Black, which profiles the acclaimed author through her writings – speeches and letters, and scenes from the landmark play, A Raisin’ In The Sun, and other plays, opened on July 25, 1992 and ran for two performances at the Bandshell in Marcus Garvey Park, located at 124th Street and Fifth Avenue, New York, NY. Darryl Lacy directed and starred in the one act version of the two-act play that was free and open to the public.

Lacy first starred in To Be Young, Gifted And Black in 1982 while attending the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City. Two years later after transferring to the State University College at Buffalo (SUCB), he directed it to satisfy a directing course requirement. This was his directorial debut. The sole performance was presented as part of the performing arts department’s annual one act festival. The cast featured Rachel L. Ferguson, Michael Fruauff, Cheryl White, Daphne Mobley, Pamela Caecamise, Kathleen Hyman, Lenie Anderson, and Darren Frazier, who Lacy would direct again seven years later in Out-Reach Production’s In Memory of A Friend, in 1991.

In November 1984, Lacy achieved another first when he produced To Be Young Gifted And Black with the Langston Hughes Institute, located at 25 High Street, Buffalo, NY, where it was performed. There were two changes for the one night engagement: the second act of the play was added and Lacy joined the cast to replace Anderson who was not available to continue with the show.

Prior to the 1984 production, Ferguson directed Lacy in Waiting For Lefty by Clifford Odets, in 1983 at SUCB. She was featured in DARRYL LACY (DL) PRODUCTIONS’ The Church Fight And Sisters, and Day of Absence, and has served as the company’s production stage manager. For the 1992 DL THEATRE production of To Be Young Gifted And Black, she reprised the roles she originally played in 1984.  

There were two other artists that were precast for the 1992 production: Glenn Dandridge, who was featured in Nikki G: A Portrait of Nikki Giovanni in Her Own Words in 1990, and Kimberly Douthett, who Lacy directed in Out-Reach Production’s In Memory of A Friend and To Friends. An open call audition was held to cast the remaining players and the following artists were selected: Dale Davison, Richard Demour, Kristi Hibschman, and Debra D. Holt.

The theatre-in-the-park production was a collaborative effort. DL PRODUCTIONS obtained a special events permit from the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation to present the play in the park, and then coordinated its use with the NYC Department of Youth and Community Development, which operated it. DL PRODUCTIONS made arrangements with the New York Police Department to secure the space before and during the performances. The company barrowed set furniture for the shows from the National Black Theatre. And Nikki Williams, host of the radio show, Artbeat of Harlem, was on hand to introduce the opening day performance.