Word Up! is a free, fun, festive word-based collaboration between audience and artist, hosted by Laura Z. This Mad Libs–style communal storytelling will feature a new performing artist every week, as well as special community guests from around San Diego. More of a gathering than a show or a class, Word Up! is a low-pressure opportunity for community members to connect with each other and with a new performing art medium each week.
Laura “Zee” Zablit (she/her/hers) is an Arts Engagement Programs Manager at The Old Globe and the creator and host of Word Up! Born and raised in San Diego, she has worked within the local queer, refugee, and immigrant communities, developing artistic programs and collaborative storytelling practices onstage and online. She earned a bachelor of fine arts in Drama and completed a bachelor of arts in Journalism at New York University.
Doors open at 5:00 p.m. with music by DJ Miki Vale, and drinks will be available at Lady Carolyn’s Pub. The show starts at 5:30 p.m.
Miki Vale is an international hip-hop artist, teaching artist, and commissioned playwright with The Old Globe. She has co-created physical and virtual spaces for women’s presence and engagement, such as SoulKiss Theatre (soulkisstheater.org), exploring the impact of hip-hop culture on race, class, and gender. In 2016 and 2018 she was the DJ and sound designer for the Globe for All Tour. mikivalethemc.com, @mikivalethemc.
These events will also be simulcast for free through The Old Globe’s YouTube channel, so everyone can enjoy this exciting collaborative theatre-making event.
All Word Up! Live events are now general-admission with no tickets required. Guests will be seated on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Schedule (all events are 5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., unless otherwise noted):
- Friday, July 30 at 4:30 p.m.: Oral Tradition with Bibi Mama
- The interactive Mad Libs–style collaboration program Word Up! Live, hosted by Laura Zee, continues this Friday, July 30 from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. with oral traditions and history around the theme of Ubuntu (meaning “stronger together” in Zulu) featuring actor and teaching artist Bibi Mama and community guest Claire Simba. Together with the audience, they will create a real-time collaborative oral history piece with past guests, rapper Ric Scales and videographer Eboni Harvey.
- Bibi Mama is an actor, playwright, singer, and recent graduate of The Old Globe and University of San Diego Shiley Graduate Theatre Program. She was recently seen in Beehive: The 60's Musical at New Village Arts and in her solo show The Mango Tree at MOXIE Theatre. Her Off Broadway credits include Monkey in Owen & Mzee The Musical (Vital Theatre Company) and Stylist in Caps for Sale The Musical (The New Victory Theater). Her favorite regional credits include Julius Caesar (The Gallery Players), Four Little Girls: Birmingham 1963 (The Kennedy Center), Richard III, Enchanted April, and Pride & Prejudice (The Theatre at Monmouth), and Cloud 9 (Studio Theatre). She is a proud B.F.A. alumna of Howard University’s Department of Theatre Arts. Bibi-Mama.com, @heybibimama on Instagram.
- Claire Simba (she/her/hers) completed her M.F.A at t The Old Globe and University of San Diego Shiley Graduate Theatre Program and her B.F.A in Theatre from the Sorbonne University in Paris, France. She last worked on Barry Edelstein's production of Thinking Shakespeare LOVE! Her New York credits include Much Ado About Nothing (Harlem Shakespeare) and Please Bring Balloons (NYCCT). She has appeared regionally in the acclaimed U.S premiere of Clue (Bucks County Playhouse), Twelfth Night (Old Globe Theater), A Christmas Carol, Peter and the Starcatcher, and Safe House (Cincinnati Playhouse). Simba’s television and film credits include Madam Secretary, Shadow of Doubt, Les Pirogues des Hautes Terres (Monte Carlo TV Festival), and Morbayassa (Cannes Film Festival), among others.
- Ric Scales is one half of the San Diego hip-hop group 18scales. Taking from both the old and new school, adding in storytelling and varied content, he tries to push boundaries musically and consciously. With beginnings in battle rap, he developed a skill for freestyling that helped him become the multiple-time champion of No Sucker DJs Battlebot monthly hip-hop tournament. As an artist, he has opened for acts such as Yasiin Bey (Mos Def), KRS-1, Raewkon, and 2 Chainz. 18scales.bandcamp.com.
- Eboni ‘EB’ Harvey (aka EB OF COURSE) is a black San Diego videographer with six years experience that is constantly working. She has shared a common vision with music artists, and
entrepreneurs, but she specializes in the documentation of the social and political climate in San Diego. It is the work that she continues to do with local non-profit organizations that she hopes to contribute her art as a form of activism.
- Friday, August 6: Classical Violin with Omari Abdul-Alim
- Friday, August 20: Commedia dell’Arte with Valeria Vega and Jesús Quintero
- Friday, September 10: Spoken Word with Angelo Pamintuan
Past Word Up! videos here
For COVID-19 updates, please check out our website and social media accounts.
Arts engagement programs at The Old Globe are generously supported in part by The James Irvine Foundation, Qualcomm, and the Ann Davies Fund for Teaching Artists.
Financial support is provided by the City of San Diego.
The Theodor and Audrey Geisel Fund provides leadership support for The Old Globe’s year-round activities.