Yvonne Broaddus, CBT’s Founder & Executive Producer, began her interest in theatre with the Negro Ensemble Company under the tutelage of Douglas Turner Ward and James Moody. While a student at Brooklyn College, she majored in economics with a minor in theatre history. This led her to apply for admission to the prestigious American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City where she graduated with honors.
Moving to Charleston in 1995, she joined community theatre and performed in plays such as, Livin’Fat, God’s Trombone, 227, Tambourines to Glory, Violet Hour, A…My Name Will Always Be Alice. She also became a member of the Charleston Film Alliance and performed as an extra in “The Patriot, In Crowd and Notebook”, as well as local commercial and print-ads. In 2008, Yvonne was invited to serve on the board of Footlight Players. As a board member, she participated in selecting plays for their upcoming seasons.
The highlight of her 4 year tenure on the board was her leadership role in their production of Porgy & Bess, which achieved sold out performances for the entire run. Footlight Players received a proclamation from Mayor Riley stating August 19, 2012 “Porgy and Bess Day”.
In the spring of 2013, Yvonne launched Charleston Black Theatre. CBT’s first two productions were “Boxing Day” which was performed at Middleton Place, and “Under Jack’s Hat”, which was performed in multiple locations, including a historic home in Charleston, a mansion on Sullivan’s Island, and on the shores of Morris Island. CBT’s nomadic nature is just one of the reasons we often say “CBT is not just theatre, it’s theatre with a twist…”
In 2014 CBT closed out its first year showcasing a repertory of talent in music. The theme for this production was borrowed from Shakespeare’s comedy, “All’s Well That Ends Well”, which translates literally to, ‘if the end result is good then everything is good!’
In 2015 an original play, “Luminaries in the City of Lights,” written and directed by Ty Collins was performed at the Charleston Museum. The inspiration for this play was a tribute to the generations of artists of color (such as Josephine Baker, Nina Simone, James Baldwin to name a few), who moved to France in search of creative and artistic freedom.