JNA Successfully Supports Celebrating Jamaican Culture through the Play, Nine Night, at the Roundhouse Theatre in Bethesda, Maryland

From September 14 to October 9, 2022, Round House Theatre, Ryan Rilette, Artistic Director, and Ed Zakreski, Managing Director presented the play, Nine Night by Natasha Gordon (Playwright-Actress of Jamaican descent), and directed by Timothy Douglas with Dramaturg, Naysan Mojgani.

JNA invited the Jamaican community to attend a performance during the run of this play, and specifically to attend the Caribbean Community Night Special Performance on Friday, Sept 30th which was sold out.  Attendees included Mr. Basil Buchanan, Ph.D., recently recognized by the Jamaican Embassy for his 42-year contribution to the DMV’s Annual Jamaican Independence Church Service; Ms. Doreen Thompson Esq., Chair of JNA’s Advisory Council;  Col. Jacqueline Payne-Borden, Ph.D., Past JNA President;  Ms. Elaine Knight, Ph.D.,  President of JNA; Rev. Dr. Noel Godfrey, Vice-President of JNA;   Ms. Jennifer Asher, Past JNA President and Chair of JNA’s SOES Committee; Mrs. Moye Stephenson-Fairweather, Co-chair of JNA’s Cultural Heritage and Social Activities, and Community Service and Development Committees, Ms. Toni Zavana, J.D., Past JNA Executive Secretary; Ms. Natalee Snider, Director of the DC Office of Caribbean Community Affairs; Dr. Norman Smith and Mrs. Yasmin Anderson-Smith; Dr. Althea Belcher, and Mr. Tony Belcher, and Ms. Enid Bogle, Ms. Marguerite Dennis, Mrs. Paula Lowers, Ms. Lunette Martin, Ms. Josae Pink, Ms. Blossom Smith, and Ms. Rukie Wilson, active JNA members and supporters, just to name a few.

AIso, important to the Jamaican community’s support of the play, and the success of the Caribbean Community Special Performance Night was the Jamaican Embassy’s committed outreach and recognition of the play as a celebration of Jamaican culture during 2022, Jamaica’s 60th Anniversary of Independence.   In attendance from the Embassy were the Jamaican Ambassador to the United States, Her Excellency the Honorable Audrey Marks, Mr. Emile Wallace-Waddell, Ms. Aliecia Taylor, Mrs. Kerry Anderson-Dixon, Mr. Lorenzo Thompson, Ms. Elizabeth King, Ms. Attilah Beckford, and Mrs. Ingrid Jailer. In attendance from the Organization of American States (OAS) was Mrs. Nicholette Williams.

A significant part of a Jamaican Nine Night celebration is food and drink and the Round House Cafe featured patties from Negril Eatery and Bakery with locations in Washington DC and Maryland at Caribbean Community Special Performance Night.   Commenting on food and drink at Nine Nights, Playwright Natasha Gordon observes: “When a family opens its home to a community, some of them come with food and they all come expecting to be fed.  Curry goat and other meat is usually the star of the table, but all the standard Jamaican fare is usually there: ackee and saltfish (the national dish of Jamaica), rice and peas (i.e., beans), spice buns, and patties.  If you don’t have Wray & Nephew White Rum, and Red Stripe Lager, it’s not really a Nine Night.”

Thanks to Round House Theatre Dramaturg, Naysan Moijgani, for partnering with JNA, working supportively with JNA volunteers on this initiative, allowing JNA to feature an onsite information table, and for sharing pictures of attendees, including those with the outstanding cast of actors in a memorable performance.  To support the work that JNA does in showcasing Jamaican culture, and providing charitable and educational assistance in the community, please go to https://jnaofdc.org. You can become a Member, a Volunteer or a Donor https://jnaofdc.org/donate/. No contribution is too small. JNA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and contributions are tax deductible as provided by law.

Please see links below to the Caribbean Community Night, September 30, 2022 – photographs

Nine Night with the Jamaican Ambassador

and if you’d like to download any, the Pin is 4419.

Round House Theatre’s Nine Night Celebrates Life in a Time of Mourning – WCP (washingtoncitypaper.com)

For other performances at the theatre, Round House offers free tickets to young people, and discounted tickets may also be available to qualifying 501(c)(3) nonprofit groups. For more information:


Discounted tickets may also be available through Goldstar:



Last-minute theatre tickets for local shows may also be obtained through TodayTix: 



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