black theatre is...

An interview with the legendary Woodie King, Jr. by Itz Black Theatre Magazine (ABTF 2014)

what is the atlanta Black Theatre Festival?

Atlanta Black Theatre Festival on CBS

Atlanta Black Theatre Festival (ABTF) is...

The Atlanta Black Theatre Festival is the  largest festival in the nation solely devoted to presenting traditional, urban contemporary and classical Afro-centric theatre under one roof!   

This annual event pays tribute to the most colorful tales of triumph and tragedy often with "laugh out loud" humor and salient humanity.  Our diverse line-up of artists are drawn from around the corner to around the globe.

Although the ABTF is popularly known as the festival of "40 plays in 4 days", this is hardly enough time to preserve and appreciate all the fantastic stories rooted in the African diaspora.  ("40 plays" includes Special Events)

Home of the Atlanta Black Theatre Festival: Porter Sanford III Performing Arts Center

We're telling our stories...

In just six short years the Atlanta Black Theatre Festival, has presented over 240 live events to thousands of art enthusiasts. Over 1,500 of the most prolific literary, visual and performing artists of our time have graced the stages with classic revivals and original works.  

All the magic happens under one roof at the magnificent Porter Sanford III Performing Arts Center located at 3181 Rainbow Drive, Decatur, GA 30034!

Atlanta Black Theatre Festival 2016

in our voices, while providing a world-class experience!

Whether you're a fan of Tyler Perry, August Wilson or just a lover of a world-class art festival, the amazing plays, international vendor and art market, and creative connections support the most prolific game-changers in Afro-centric storytelling. 

It's an eclectic mix that creates an authentic celebration of community. This popular fall festival is sure to become one of your favorite things to do in Atlanta!  

Best Fall Festivals

"Best Fall Festivals" in Atlanta...

The Atlanta Black Theatre Festival  was named among the top "Can't Miss Fall Festivals" in Atlanta metro by the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau and "Best Fall Festivals" by

We're building community on play at a time telling our stories with our voices.   

Our Mission is...

The mission of the Atlanta Black Theatre Festival is to connect people and build community through rich artistic experiences.  

Our prime aim is to...


  • change the narrative by revealing the truth of our history and contributions to civilization, arts and culture;
  • create and expand opportunities for emerging and seasoned artists of color;
  • engage and enlighten the next generation;
  • contribute to the cultural and capital economies of the community. 


Hear from us about upcoming shows, discounts, special events and more! (We don't spam or share info.)

Executive Staff

Toni Simmons Henson, MPA

Founder, Producing Director, Partnership Development and Strategic Marketing

Atlanta Black Theare Festival Staff, Shelton Land

Shelton Land, PhD

Artistic Director and

 Director of Educational Programs 

Atlanta Black Theatre Festival Technical Director

Stephanie J. Walden, BFA

Technical Director

consulting staff

Atlanta Black Theatre Festival Co-founder, Wanda Simmons

Wanda Simmons

Co-Founder, Festival Director (Emerita)

Chief Adjudicator 

Atlanta Black Theatre Festival Staff Kiplyn Primus

Kiplyn Primus

Marketing/Brand Strategy Consultant

Primus Marketing, LLC

Atlanta Black Theatre Festival Board Chair Taurean Blacque

Taurean Blacque

Honorary Chair 

(NAACP Image Award, Emmy Nominated Actor)

Advisory Board

Atlanta Black Theatre Festival 2013: Antonio Henson and Dick Gregory

Micheal Dinwiddie, MFA

Associate Professor at New York University's Gallatin School, NYU's 2005 Distinguished Teaching Award, Walt Disney Fellow, National Endowment of the Arts Fellow (Playwriting), President (Emeritus) Black Theatre Network 

Antonio Henson, MBA

Vice President, Community Development Banking, PNC Bank

Shirlene Holmes, PhD

Associate Professor at Georgia State University, Lorraine Hansberry Scriptwriting Award, Nancy Dean Distinguished Playwriting Award, Kennedy Arts Center for the Arts Playwriting Residency.  

Andre' Minkins, MFA

Professor at Winston-Salem State University, Artistic Director at 7am Productions, Playwright (20+plays), Coordinating participant of National Black Arts Festival, National Black Theatre Festival,  Tampa Bay Theatre Festival, DC Black Theatre Festival and national workshop facilitator. 


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