The Last Gatekeeper is a three-act, Afro-futurist, musical theater experience, inspired by the teachings of West African shaman Malidoma Somé. The term Gatekeeper refers to the indigenous belief that those who express themselves as same-gender-loving (SGL) maintain the portals between the physical and spiritual world.

THE STORY

The story is set in a capital city 50 years after the apocalypse. As engagement with the ancestor realm dwindles on earth, the gates between the physical and spiritual worlds begin to close, which causes catastrophic natural disasters. The country’s totalitarian regime called “The Administration,” blames these disasters on “Dissenters” or anyone deemed a threat to their power and control. Activists, individualists, SGL, or queer folk, feminists, and anyone in the underground movement called “The Resistance,” are targets for The Administration. Being a Dissenter has deadly consequences, the reward for their capture is enticing and the punishment for their protection is terrifying.

Nandi, a second-generation West African mother, suspects that her spiritually gifted, sensitive, and inquisitive son Soku, is SGL. To maintain Soku’s safety, Nandi tries to keep him from embracing his true nature, while his grandmother Adisa, a witch trained in the traditions of her people, counters this by teaching him the ways of the ancient Gatekeepers, connecting him to his ancestor spirits, and helping him develop his spiritual gifts. 

Guided by Adisa and his ancestor spirits, who Soku moves towards embracing his true nature, which gives him the power to re-open the gates, overthrow The Administration, and restore balance to the world. 

The Last Gatekeeper merges imaginative elements and technical wonders, with an expansive otherworldly story that gives the audience a singular, transformative experience.addresses the complexity of being a sensitive, gifted, SGL, black boy in a world that wants to erase them. It openly displays the magic and mystery of the supernatural while pushing creative boundaries, and exposing the racial, economic, social and spiritual oppression that has caused soul-crushing shame and psychological trauma for the SGL community. 

We live in a world whose core policies and spiritual traditions deem SGL folks as invisible, expendable and even abominable. Living with these beliefs, even subconsciously, has caused the SGL community to experience high levels of depression, stress-related illnesses, and even suicide.

This musical is a mirror for the SGL community that shows them their relevance, beauty, power, and magic. It will compel them to heal and express their true selves. 

THE CAST

CREATIVE TEAM

Germono Toussaint

Composer, Librettists, Producer

Germono Toussaint is a multi-award-winning composer, arranger, playwright and producer. He is the Artistic Director of A Mile In My Shoes Inc., and one of the founding playwrights of the Obie award-winning The Fire This Time Festival.

His plays have been featured in the Not for Broadway Theater Festival, Horse Trade Theater Group, All Out Arts play festival (2015 winner), New York Madness, The Fire This Time Festival, National Black Theater’s Keep Soul Alive reading series, and 48 Hours…in Harlem.

In the summer of 2020, he premiered his virtual show Brown Liquor and Blessed Oil in the Queerly Festival and was one of the hosts of The Reparations Show created by Kevin R. Free.

He participated in Tofte Lake Center’s 10th Annual Emerging Artist Program, was a Sheen Center Theater Artist Fellow, and a Rhymes Over Beats Artist in Residence.

https://germonotoussaint.com/

John-Martin Green

Director

John-Martin Green, Ed.D. is Founder and Executive Director of The Gatekeeper’s Collective (TGC), a resiliency enhancement network of same gender loving (SGL), gay, bisexual and Queer African descended men.

As Co-Founder and Co-Artistic Director of Blackberry Productions Theatre Company, John-Martin develops and produces theater that sheds light on issues impacting our communities and creates forums for a multiplicity of voices and perspectives in solutions-focused reflection.

As an educator, he was a co-founder and co-director over a decade, of Changing Scenes, an OBIE Award-winning arts-based crisis intervention program for juvenile offenders.

www.thegatekeeperscollective.com/the-team

Dionne McClain-Freeney

Music Director

Dionne McClain-Freeney, pianist, composer, lyricist, choral and musical director, arranger, singer and teaching artist’s credits include accompaniment in some of New York’s most beloved churches, appearances here and abroad, including Joe’s Pub, and off-Broadway musical direction.

Her award-winning compositions and arrangements include New York Philharmonic, NYMF, GLAAD Media Award (nominee). She is a composer in the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theater Workshop.

Crystal Monee Hall

Vocal Arranger

Crystal Monee Hall’s varied career as a singer, songwriter, instrumentalist and actress has included roles on Broadway (“RENT”), sold out tours with acclaimed musicians, Ben Platt, Kristen Chenoweth, Mickey Hart (Grateful Dead) and Dave Schools (Widespread Panic), being a featured vocalist on Saturday Night Live and also a guest appearance on the HBO comedy-drama High Maintenance.

She has released three albums (one solo as well as two with Hart).  With work from her most recent EP “If You Breathe” called ‘riveting’ by Billboard Magazine. Her newest release seamlessly blends Hall’s love for world, blues, jazz, soul and contemporary R&B, showcasing her talent as a songwriter, while highlighting a voice that has captivated audiences worldwide.

www.crystalmoneehall.com/

Germaul Barnes

Choreographer

Germaul Barnes is a choreographer, educator, and scholar with a multifaceted career spanning over thirty-year. Global in vision and influence, he is known for a bold, urgent, energetic movement style, steeped in spirituality and optimism. His work regularly reflects his in-depth knowledge of and interest in anthropology, the culture of African Diaspora, musicality, and social justice.

Barnes is a BESSIE ward-winning, répétiteur for the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company, a dance instructor at the Alabama School of Fine Arts, artist-in-residence at The Dance Foundation, curator of Contemporary Improvisation for Black Men, choreographers adviser for One Dance-UK and Movement Research, and a member of IABD’s Next Generation committee.

In 2018, Barnes received a Proclamation from Senator Jesse E. Hamilton and a Citation from the Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams honoring his dedication as an artist and educator in the Brooklyn, New York Community.

www.viewsicdance.com/

Brianna Osaseri

Illustrator

Brianna Osaseri is a freelance visual artist and illustrator based in the greater Atlanta Area. Late-night Japanese anime, Saturday morning cartoons, and classic Studio Ghibli films sparked a childhood desire to create and tell stories, heading her down the path of pursuing art for the rest of her life. Now with a Bachelor’s degree in Studio Art from Washington and Lee University, she is driven to bring the stories and visions of others to life who can’t do so on their own, reflective of herself during childhood. Work with other artists and creatives continues to inspire her work and her ambition to create work both her and her collaboratives are proud to share with the world.  

Shaun Harrison AKA Supernerd

XR Creative Director

Shaun Harrison is the Art Director at Supernerd Productions – a full-service design and animation boutique that produces all aspects of unique content creation for music tours, recording artist live performances, TV Network & Broadcast show packaging, commercials and live events.

Supernerd’s clients include Essence Fest, OUT Magazine, Chris Brown Entertainment, NBC Universal, MTV Networks, Cardi B, Nick Cannon, and Jason Lee.

https://www.supernerd.tv/index-1

Ian Michelin

Video Editor

Norman Small

Stage Manager

Off Broadway—WP Theater: Where We Stand;
Atlantic Theater Company: Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven; The Public Theater: A Night of Wild Beauty. New York Theater—Brave New World Repertory Theatre: The Plantation; Harlem Shakespeare Festival: Othello: The Moor of Venice; New Heritage Theatre Group: The Sable Series: The History of Black Shakespearean Actors. Tour—Apollo Theater/Baltimore Center Stage: Twisted Melodies; National Public Radio (NPR): Water +. Regional—Baltimore Center Stage: Crossing Rivers; Berkshire
Playwrights Lab: Some Old Black Man; Passage Theatre Company: Illuminating Spirits.

Durrock Knox

Web Producer, Marketing

Durrock Knox is a Digital Producer and Marketing Technologist originally from Baltimore, Maryland. Raised in Virginia as a STEM kid, he later attended the Art Institute of Philadelphia for Graphic Design and shortly after launched a career in Print Production. Upon shifting his career into the digital space, he went on to produce promotional visuals and digital marketing campaigns for brands such as Bloomberg, Samsung, Ebony Magazine, Tribune Media, The Apollo Theater, and more.

http://www.durrockknox.com/