Written & Performed by Nina Domingue*, 2019/2020 Nord Family Foundation Playwright Fellow.
Directed by Nathan Henry.

April 21, 2022 - May 14, 2022

7:30pm, Thu/Fri/Sat, Mon, May 2 and 3:00pm Sun, April 24, Gordon Square Theatre.Preview April 21. Opening Night is April 22.

1 hour and 40 min with no intermission

EVERY TICKET is “Choose What You Pay” and will be offered online, over the phone, and at the Box Office.

Click here for COVID-19 Safety Protocols.

In 2002, Joan Evelyn Southgate, a retired social worker and Cleveland-area activist, stepped off from the small town of Ripley, Ohio, with a simple goal: highlight the courage and resourcefulness of freedom seekers and conductor families who risked everything on the Underground Railroad. Nina Domingue chronicles Joan’s life through the 519-mile walk across Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, and Canada. World Premiere.

*Actor appears courtesy of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.

Content Warning: The Absolutely Amazing and True Adventures of Ms. Joan Evelyn Southgate includes some words people may find offensive, sexual content or innuendo, and discussion of racism and violence against children.

The Gordon Square Theatre is ADA-compliant featuring a ramped entrance and an all-gender, wheelchair accessible restroom.

The Creative Production Team Includes:

Producer: Raymond Bobgan
Stage Manager & Costume Designer: Mia Jones
Lighting Designer: Josee Coyle
Sound Designer: Derek A. Graham
Projection Designer: Joe Burke
Technical Director: Garrett Markgraf
Set Designer: Cameron Caley Michalak
Composer: Bill Ransom
Choreographer & Movement Coach: Kenya Woods

Remarkable Rating:

Highlights from the show!

Video by Joshua McElroy.

Click the image above or here to watch!


Thursday, May 12, 2022

Following the 7:30pm performance of The Absolutely Amazing and True Adventures of Ms. Joan Evelyn Southgate, on Thursday, May 12, join us for what is sure to be a spirited discussion moderated by Aseelah Shareef, a dancer, performer, educator and arts administrator with Karamu House; and featuring Nina Domingue, writer and performer of The Absolutely Amazing and True Adventures of Ms. Joan Evelyn Southgate, along with Alana Belle, a local artist and activist, Dr. Karen Gilliam, an author and diversity specialist, and Dr. Donna Whyte, an author, educator, and diversity specialist. The talk is free for all attending the performance that day.


Features in Media!

“I want people to see her as a full human being, with hopes and fears, and desires… ” – Playwright, Nina Domingue 

Click here or on the image to watch the full story on channel 8 News – and learn more about Nina and Ms. Southgate’s and how their incredible paths crossed to develop The Absolutely Amazing and True Adventures of Ms. Joan Evelyn Southgate.

“I want people to come away with the concept of Sankofa, That when you forget it is not taboo to return and fetch it…” – Playwright, Nina Domingue 

“It’s almost like the ancestors were speaking to me” – Ms. Joan Evelyn Southgate

Click here or on the image to watch the full story on WKYC Channel 3 “We the People” – and hear more about The Absolutely Amazing and True Adventures of Ms. Joan Evelyn Southgate.

CPT to debut the story of one woman’s 519-mile trek along the Underground Railroad ( – Freshwater Cleveland

About the Playwright: Nina Domingue

Nina Domingue is a well-respected and sought-after actress, playwright, and director. She was included on The Kilroy’s List 2020 for her development of The Absolutely Amazing and True Adventures of Ms. Joan Evelyn Southgate. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Theater Arts from Dillard University of New Orleans and a Master of Fine Arts in Acting from West Virginia University. Nina was described by critic Andrew Rothkin this way: “Domingue, an eloquent artist of more colors than Crayola, and who has the refined skill of someone twice her age.” The Plain Dealer described her performances as “Must-see theatre!” Credits include: Paradise Blue (Karamu, Justin Emeka), Medea At 6:00 (Ensemble Theatre), Project1Voice 2015: Home by Samm-Art Williams (starring James Pickens, Jr. − Grey’s Anatomy), Project1Voice 2014, for colored girls… (lady in orange, Dale Shields), It Hasn’t Always Been This Way by Ntozake Shange (Off-Broadway, Diane McIntyre), Venus (The Venus Hottentot, CPT), Merry Wives of Windsor (Mistress Quickly, Great Lakes Theater Festival), Nickel and Dimed (Multiple Characters, co-production between CPT and GLTF), for colored girls… (lady in red, Karamu House, Terrence Spivey). Solo show credits include: NY International Fringe Festival, Ya Mama! (developed in CPT’s Big Box Series and presented as part of CPT’s 2018/2019 Season), No Child… (CPT), The Little Mermaid (Cleveland Play House, Pamela DiPasquale), A Jewel of a Tale (commission by Cleveland Play House Children’s Series). Independent film: Bringing Henrietta to Life (Henrietta Lacks), The Passageway (Dr. Collins). Directing Credits: The Mountaintop (Karamu House Theater), Skeleton Crew (Dobama Theater), The Adventures of the Black Girl in Her Search for God by Lisa Codrington, American premier (Karamu House Theater). Awards and honors include: Best Actress in a Play (Cleveland Theatre Collective, lady in red), Memorably Distinctive Performances in a Theatrical Season (Cleveland Theatre Collective, 2004-2005 Season), and The Cleveland Plain Dealer has said that Nina is “…a young Anna Deavere Smith” and watching her is “like a master class in acting.”

About the Director: Nathan Henry

Nathan Henry is the recipient of the 2018 Cleveland Scene Theatre Award for Best Director for Karamu House’s critically acclaimed production of Passing Strange. He directed the Cleveland Public Theatre production of Ya Mama!, written and performed by Nina Domingue, which appeared at the 2018 Hollywood Fringe Festival. Nathan recently directed James Ijames’ Kill Move Paradise at Dobama Theatre, Idris Goodwin’s Jacked! at Cleveland Play House, as well as the world premiere of White Man’s Burden, a collaboration with Beck Center for the Arts, Baldwin-Wallace University Music Theatre Program, and the National Alliance for Musical Theatre. He has worked in professional theatre as a producer, director, choreographer, educator and arts administrator for over 20 years. Select regional credits for directing include: Nina Domingue’s Sundiata, Douglas Turner Ward’s Day of Absence, Eric Coble’s The Velocity of Autumn, Pearl Cleage’s Flyin’ West, Dael Orlandersmith’s Yellowman, August Wilson’s Seven Guitars, and Lee Summers’ From My Hometown. He also served as Line Producer for the regional premiere of Rajiv Joseph’s The Lake Effect, a co-production between Ensemble Theatre and Karamu House.