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Introducing KaniniFest:

Universal Oneness

A One Act Play Festival coming October 11-13, 2024!

Join us for a groundbreaking event that celebrates the power of storytelling and the unity

of humanity. The word Kanini, deriving from the Indigenous Australian word “Kanyini,”

means ONENESS. Kanyini is best expressed in English as the combination of the two

words ‘responsibility’ and ‘love’, but it is actually a relationship; it is an enormous caring

with no limit - it has no timeframe: it is eternal. The concept of Kanyini and its four

principle’s of Indigenous life mirror the principles of our festival:


- Creation

- Spirit, Soul, and Psyche

- Family and Kinship

- Land, Home, Place or Mother

Kanini isn’t just a name, it represents the essence of this festival - a fusion of one-act

plays and the universal oneness that connects us all - human beings, nature, and art.

Created by Christopher Alexander Chukwueke and Tenisi Davis, this festival is a program

specifically designed for BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) playwrights

from all over the nation. It aims to discover and uplift talented individuals who have yet to

be recognized or are on the rise in their careers. As the first festival of its kind in the South

Central Region of the US, Kanini Festival provides a unique opportunity for BIPOC playwrights to rewrite their narratives and fearlessly tell the stories of their people.

Inspired by the thought-provoking exhibit 'We The People' at the Crystal Bridges Museum

of American Art, this year's festival theme is "We The People!" It traces the journey of

American history, starting from the Declaration of Independence to the Emancipation

Proclamation and the fight for justice during the Civil Rights Movement. Kanini Fest

continues this powerful journey, amplifying the voices and perspectives of all of

America's children.

Our goals are ambitious yet crucial. We strive to provide a world-class platform for

undiscovered, underserved, or up-and-coming BIPOC playwrights, giving them the

recognition they deserve. According to "The Count" by the Dramatist Guild of America,

only 15.1% of published and working playwrights in America are people of color. We aim

to change that by encouraging BIPOC individuals to elevate their stories and collaborate

with other artists.

Not only does Kanini Fest offer a chance for artists to be discovered, but it also creates an

opportunity for them to connect with organizations and individuals who can support them

on their artistic journey. One collaboration we are proud of is that with Theatre Squared in

Fayetteville. Winning playwrights will have an opportunity to be put in the running for

Theatre Squared’s New Play Festival, overseen by friend and colleague Dexter Singleton.

Dexter will sit as head of our play review committee. By attending the festival, you'll have

the privilege of experiencing the incredible offerings of art and culture at The Momentary

and Crystal Bridges, further enriching your understanding and appreciation of creativity.

This festival is not just about the artists; it's also a blessing for the local talent in the

Northwest Arkansas area. With our access to local casting professionals, all performers

needed for the festival will be cast directly from a pool of actors right here in Arkansas.

This not only provides work opportunities for the talented actors in our community but

also serves as a solid resume builder, opening doors for future endeavors. Moreover,

Kanini Fest will shine a spotlight on the brightest and most innovative directors in

Northwest Arkansas, nurturing their talents and showcasing their brilliance.

But the magic of Kanini Fest doesn't end there. It is an opportunity for all attendees to

embark on a transformative experience that awakens consciousness and fosters unity. By

providing unfiltered insights into BIPOC culture, the festival creates understanding and

reminds us that We The People are ONE. It teaches us to love one another and collaborate,

laying the foundation for a more profitable and humane future.

Join us at Kanini Fest: A One Act Play Festival coming October 11th - 13th, 2024 and be

part of a groundbreaking celebration of diverse voices, extraordinary talent, and the

beauty of unity. Together, let's rewrite narratives, uplift BIPOC stories, and create a future

filled with love, collaboration, and artistic brilliance.

Meet The Team

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