Kash Goins brings ‘Fences’ to Plays and Players

Kash Goins

Continuing its theme of tackling classic African-American plays rarely staged by independent African-American theater companies, GoKash Productions is presenting “Fences” by August Wilson through Aug. 4 on the main stage at Plays and Players.

It is a work that won Wilson numerous awards, including the 1987 Tony Award for Best Play as well as the Pulitzer Prize.

“I was always inspired by August Wilson and wanted to pick one of his works and produce it myself,” said Kash Goins who founded GoKash Productions in 2008. “There weren’t too many other companies putting this piece out there so I decided to do it.”

According to Goins, when he first came to the “entertainment landscape I saw lots of producers of African-American material putting on religious or politically-based plays all following similar themes. I decided I wanted to produce works more on the cutting edge and looking at life from a different landscape.”

And so he did, mounting original self-written plays, including the 2009 NYC Downtown Urban Theatre Festival Best Play winner “VI Degrees.” He’s also produced the work of new playwrights in an effort to ensure that their voices be heard. He also established the Philly Urban Theatre Festival in 2010 and re-visited in 2011. The Festival is now preparing for a 2014 engagement.

Goins was born and raised in South Philly with an eye toward becoming an accountant until a chance remark from his high school English teacher. “We were often assigned different readings to do in class and I really got into them,” Goins recalls. “She obviously liked what I did and told me to make sure to get involved in theater when I got to college. I never thought of theater as an art form for me, but when I auditioned for ‘Raisin in the Sun’ at Lincoln University and got a part, suddenly I was hooked.”

“Last year, I appeared in a production of ‘Jitney,’ a play that focused on men in the ’50s and ‘60s and their struggles to produce new worlds and impart wisdom to their children,” Goins said. “African-American men were doing so much to liberate themselves and make a place for themselves in this world, that I wanted to play homage to them as well as study them from the inside out. I felt ‘Fences’ would be the perfect vehicle to help me do that.”

So today, Goins, family man, father of three, actor, producer and playwright is not only producing Wilson’s “Fences,” he’s also starring in it as Troy Maxon, a man who has gone through life in an America where to be proud and Black is to face pressures that could crush a man, body and soul.

“As the lead in the play as well as the producer, it’s a huge job to keep it all together,” Goins said. “But it’s well worth it. I am not fueled by the desire to get rich, or receive notoriety. I am not fueled by anything other than the fact that I have a love and passion for what I do and can only hope that people are moved by seeing it.”

For more information go to gokashproductions.ticketleap.com/fences.

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