The Creative Process: Dialogue with Douglas Turner Ward and Robert Hooks

New York Public Library for the Performing Arts




Event Dates

Jun 14, 2021


5:30pm - 6:30pm

New York Public Library for the Performing Arts

Actor, director, producer, and activist Robert Hooks and the late Douglas Turner Ward, producer, director, playwright, and actor, discuss their work founding the Negro Ensemble Company (NEC) in 1966, its rise to prominence, the controversies encountered through the years, and the group's struggle for survival. The Negro Ensemble Company originated important plays including Ceremonies in Dark Old Men, The River Niger, Zooman and the Sign, A Soldier's Play, and Home, and helped to launch the careers of Debbie Allen, Angela Bassett, Adolph Caesar, Laurence Fishburne, Danny Glover, Louis Gossett, Jr., David Alan Grier, Samuel L. Jackson, S. Epatha Merkerson, Phylicia Rashad, Esther Rolle, and Denzel Washington, among many others.

This videorecording produced by the Theatre on Film and Tape Archive (TOFT) was originally recorded on April 27, 1987 to mark the 20th anniversary of the founding of the NEC. It is presented here online for the first time in honor of Douglas Turner Ward, who passed away at the age of 90 earlier this year on February 20, 2021. Part of our ongoing series "The Creative Process," this marks the digital debut of this conversation outside the walls of the Library.

To register for this event, please click here.