SHEILA KAY DAVIS
Founder/Artistic Director of New Professional Theatre
Sheila Kay Davis is a lifelong theatre professional. After graduating from Spelman College in Atlanta, Ga. with a degree in theatre, Sheila headed to New York City. She was immediately cast in the hit show "Little Shop of Horrors", now a classic, in which Sheila originated the role of Ronette. She is featured on the cast album and played the role for five years. She hit the ground running racking up success in television commercials, regional theatres, and daytime dramas.
Since its inception, NPT has served over 1000 playwrights with productions, cash grants, dramaturgy, business seminars and providing access to agents and producers. New Professional Theatre is the only African American theatre company located in the Broadway theatre district. NPT writers have been featured in regional theatre, television, and film. Sheila is the daughter of Carrie Meek, the first African American elected to the US Congress in the state of Florida since Reconstruction. Sheila understands developing constituencies and community mobilization. She serves her community through the NPT Education Program a program that provides mentoring, homework assistance, college prep, volunteerism and Broadway outings to New York City Public School Students. She also chairs the Arts Ministry at Antioch Baptist Church. She has received the Spelman College Alumnae Achievement Award for Arts & Media and the Arts Leadership Award from the Coalition of 100 Black/Asian/Latino women at the World of Women Leaders.
However, she noticed very few minorities having real sustainable success in the theatre world. Her thorough experience as an actress gave her insight into both the joys and frustrations of minority artists. She used this insight as her drive to found the New Professional Theatre (NPT). Armed with passion and desire, Ms. Davis set out to form a theatre company that would develop African American playwrights, a sorely underrepresented group.