‘Tek Wey Yuhself’ opens in The Bronx on Friday
Tek Wey Yuhself, a Jamaican romantic comedy, opens at Hostos Community College in The Bronx, New York on March 10. A second show the following day takes place at the same venue.
Written by Devon Morgan and directed by Pablo Hoilett, it stars Deon Silvera and Stede Flash, veterans of Jamaican theatre, as well as Dainty Bellanfantie, Kathy Grant and Leon Parkins.
Proceeds from the play will help fund the shipping of 300 desks and chairs to Jamaica from New York City by Having PURPOSE, a non-profit organisation operated by Christeen Francis, a Jamaican social worker.
“It’s going to be a lot of fun, believe me! I sat through rehearsals and couldn’t stop laughing,” said Francis, who started Having PURPOSE in 2015.
They have donated digital devices to, and helped establish computer labs at schools in Jamaica such as Clarendon College, Cornwall College, Munro College and Denbigh Primary School.
The desks and chairs are a donation to a St Catherine educational programme run by HEART.
“It’s important for us to help those who need assistance, especially when it comes to education. We also do work in Africa, in countries like Lesotho, Ghana and Sierra Leone,” Francis disclosed.
Having PURPOSE is made aware of school needs by frequent contact with Jamaican past students associations in North America. Once these schools are identified, Francis and her team assess the magnitude of their problems, then approach donors to assist them.
Previously, Having PURPOSE has staged concerts featuring Half Pint, Eric Donaldson and Taj Weeks of St Lucia to raise funds. They have also benefitted from a charity staging of Jamaica Farewell, the one-woman show by Jamaican actress/playwright Debra Earhardt.
Francis, who is from Denbigh, Clarendon, has lived in the United States since age 14. She says Having PURPOSE operates on four principles — health, education, economic development and sanitation.
Tek Wey Yuhself is projected to play in other major US cities, Canada and the United Kingdom.