Educate. Uplift. Inspire. These three words define the mission of Theatre TCU Black Excellence (TTBE).
The organization was founded in the fall of 2019 by 11 Black theatre students passionate about the performing arts. The founders envisioned a safe space to educate and showcase prolific works written for and about Black artists’ historical impact and experience.
Campus & Community Impact
“Yeah, I wanna dance with somebody. With somebody who loves me.” – Whitney Houston
“TCU Sings!” is an annual concert series highlighting a Black artist’s musical legacy and influence. TTBE invites students across campus to perform their favorite songs from the selected artist. This past spring, the concert featured Whitney Houston and her greatest works, including “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” and “I Will Always Love You.”
TTBE continued its campus mission with “BLACKOUT: A Cabaret Honoring Black Lives,” a production honoring the Black Lives Matter movement. The piece turned into a show held each semester. The fall 2022 show, “BLACKOUT Volume 3: The Black Experience,” featured selections from Paradise Square, MJ the Musical, Sister Act 2, and scene and song arrangements by notable artists and alumni.
The group has expanded its impact with community service and outreach programs. Members partnered with the American Heart Association for its annual “Go Red for Women” charity banquet and performed selections of Whitney Houston’s most inspirational pieces to raise awareness and support women with heart diseases.
Students also volunteered at the Homeless Coalition of Dallas to transport donations and hot meals to the homeless and low-income families.
“It was a day full of singing, helping and sharing with each other,” said Klark Johnson, BM Vocal Performance ’24.
Masterclasses in the Fine Arts
TTBE holds masterclasses to prepare members for a career in the fine arts. A recent master class featured Broadway stars DeQuina Moore and Maiesha McQueen, who shared their professional experience and offered advice to emerging artists. Students had the opportunity to present a song and monologue for valuable feedback and critique.
Inclusivity & Legacy
“We feel that it is important in our organization to provide a family away from home and a community to all Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) students so that everyone is accepted and celebrated here at TCU,” said Johnson.
TTBE strives to reach students interested in theatre performance and community activism. The organization hopes to continue educating on Black art and artists and recruit future Horned Frogs to continue its growth and legacy.