The Black Arts Institute is an immersive acting program offered in partnership between the Billie Holiday Theatre and Stella Adler Studio. The Institute offers two programs in 2020 exploring the history of the contemporary Black theater tradition with courses held at the Billie Holiday Theatre in Brooklyn, NY. Applications are open for the Black Arts Institute Summer Intensive, a five-week comprehensive exploration of the history of the contemporary Black theater tradition, led by a world-class faculty. Students will leave with an understanding of the aesthetic, socio-cultural and historical components involved in bringing contemporary Black theater to life. The program will highlight certain key historical moments like the Harlem Renaissance,the Black Power movement and the genesis of the Negro Ensemble Company, as well as many Black theaters that emerged during the Black Arts Movement.

Black Arts Institute: 25in25 Virtual Summer Intensive

Dates: July 6 – August 7, 2020
Duration: 5 Weeks, 25 Hours of Class per Week
Tuition: $2500

The 25in25 Virtual Summer Intensive series consists of 25 sessions over 25 days in 5 weeks that offers you exclusive access to top-tier professionals in the fields of theater, film, TV, dance, and history from across the world. The Black Arts Institute provides a sacred virtual space to connect with a select group of students from across the world within the Black Arts Institute’s mission of training theater artists in becoming vibrant and contributing members that celebrate and champion the exquisite diversity of local, national and global arts' communities in the 21st century through the lens of the Black Theater Canon.

Over a five week period you will:

  • Garner access to leading titans, storytellers, activists and practitioners currently working in the GLOBAL entertainment industry across stage and screen
  • Engage in intimate 5 two-hour length lecture sessions per week, with a one-hour excavation to unpack and discuss the topics and touchstones covered in each session
  • Be offered the ability to refer to previously recorded sessions you were unable to attend during the five-week period for a limited time
  • Build and strengthen your ties to creative professionals from across the globe
  • Participate in voice and speech classes to build ensemble and harness your instrument through an Afro-centric lense
  • Learn the correlation between movement/gesture and historical period in movement and dance classes
  • Leave with an understanding of the aesthetic, socio-cultural and historical components involved in bringing contemporary black theater to life


BAI faculty and lecturers have included: Stephen McKinley Henderson, Ruben Santiago-Hudson, Phylicia Rashad, Michele Shay, Sonia Sanchez, Michael Eric Dyson, Jerome Preston Bates, Robert O’Hara, Camille A. Brown.

Summer Intensive NYC AUDITIONS: **At this time, in-person auditions have been suspended in lieu of video auditions through the Video Audition Submission Form.

If you have any questions, email Melissa, Program Coordinator