On Stage and Off

Theater in Georgia

Community Theaters

Founded in the 1970s, the Neighborhood Arts Center (NAC) was an Atlanta-based arts institution that served as a meeting ground for everything from auditions and rehearsals to community gatherings. It included two in-house theater groups: Proposition Theater (est. 1975) and Jomandi Productions (est. 1978). Proposition Theater focused on performing “the classics” (both African and European), and in-house director Walter Dallas emphasized mentoring young actors. Jomandi Productions explored new, less traditional work from Atlanta-based playwrights. Along with the NAC’s other programs, these two companies became essential to the center’s mission to create “Art for People’s Sake.” The NAC was the primary locus of the Black Arts Movement and Black theater renaissance in Atlanta. Its goal was to make programming accessible and relevant to a variety of audiences. Tom Jones, playwright and founder of Jomandi, called the NAC the “nexus” for the Black theater companies of Atlanta.