HERstory in Black: d'bi young anitafrika
She is the Artistic Director of The Watah Theatre in Toronto
In honour of Black History month, CBC brings you stories from HERstory in Black, a Toronto-based digital photo series profiling 150 black women from the GTA and other parts of Ontario by How She Hustles, a network of 5,000 diverse women.
Who: d'bi young anitafrika
What she does: She is an actor, playwright, dub poet and Artistic Director of The Watah Theatre in Toronto.
Some people are born with natural gifts, where did that start for you?
d'bi young anitafrika: My mom is a storyteller and she's one of the pioneer dub poets. My mom put me in the Jamaican theatre school every summer. Culturally in Jamaica storytelling is very normalized, but having that extra push and having that extra access to storytelling spaces made it so that my shyness and my sense of introversion was challenged really early.
What do you hope people take away from the 150 photos of women featured in HERstory in Black?
d'bi young anitafrika: I'm really hoping that when my children and my children's children and my sister's children and my brother's children and all the seven generations that come, that when they look back at the work that we've done they will be able to say, 'My ancestors were here and they made choices to ensure that I was born and given a fair chance to experience my humanity.'
With files from Tashauna Reid and Nicole Brewster-Mercury