Building community one story at a time.

The Lower Bottom Playaz

ESt. 1999

Founding Director Ayodele "WordSlanger" Nzinga, MFA, PhD



Red Beans, Rice, Honey Buttermilk Cornbread
& Conversations about Race

July 30- August 2nd, 2015

Beyond the Bars: Growing Home
An Evening with August Wilson
Kudzu (preview)

The Flight Deck
1540 Broadway
Oakland CA

July 30, 2015 at 7 PM & August 2nd, 2015 at 2:00 Beyond the Bars: Growing Home is a dramatic stage reading  derived from the stories of Green Life participants who are formerly incarcerated and re-entering Bay Area communities. In March and April 2015, Green Life re-entry project members came together with storyteller, playwright and scholar, Ayodele Nzinga, at Canticle Farm in Oakland, and in healing circles we shared stories of heartbreak and healing around the topic of "home". We invite the communities most impacted by the intersections of incarceration, re-entry, social identity and place, including service providers, program facilitators, youth of color and their families. Our project topic of home and belonging in marginalized populations reflects the urgent need of housing for re-entry populations, the trauma imposed by housing insecurity, and considers the barriers to belonging and inclusion marginalized populations face.

July 31, & August 1, 2015 at 8:00 An Evening with August Wilson: A collection of monologues performed by The Lower Bottom Playaz spanning August Wilson's seminal work, the ten play series,The American Century Cycle. On the eve of The Playaz completing the production of the entire cycle in chronological order we invite you to look at The Cycle as a whole with us and to allow it to help frame a frank and honest conversation in community about race, place, community development, police in community, incarceration and other themes captured in the work which offers a view of America's last century from the lens of North American Africans.

Kudzu:August 2nd, 2015 
 A preview of a new work by Tracy Baxter. 

A preview of Kudzu, a very dark comedy about gentrification, technology, development, and displacement followed by a conversation with the playwright, performers, and audience members.

Red Beans, Rice, Honey Buttermilk Cornbread
& Conversations about Race

The Playaz will offer readings and performances of work that has race, place, and belonging as a central theme and then facilitate a community conversation between audience, guest speakers, writers, performing artist of color, members of community based organizations, and the audiences. The talk backs will be filmed and will inform a larger work about race & place in North America.

The purpose of the series is to offer space for a candid discussion about race, gentrification, incarceration, police brutality, intentional community building, and to craft an ongoing space/container to continue and deepen these considerations in a public forum.

The goal of the project is to facilitate the reframing of polarized views around race, community, police services, black and brown bodies, and to find common ground for building intentional community.


For more information about this work:

 Season 16.  Continua: 

The American Century Cycle Project

T h e

A m e r i c a n   C e n t u r y    C y c l e 


The Lower Bottom Playaz 

proudly present


King Hedley, II 

& Radio Golf

by August Wilson


The Lower Bottom Playaz

directed by 

Dr. A.Nzinga, MFA, PHD


The Flight Deck

1540 Broadway Oakland, CA 94612

Available for Booking

The Lower Bottom Playaz 

                                          Invisible   Theater   Traveling   Series 

 The Lower Bottom Playaz, Inc 

in residence

@ The Flight Deck

1540 Broadway,

Oakland CA

Creating what we need from what we have been gifted since 1999.