by Charlayne Woodard
directed by Claire Simba

March 24 – April 16
Preview Performance: Friday, March 24
Opening Night: Saturday, March 25

On a bare stage, this magnificent storyteller spins her own exquisite real-life remembrance of her brain-damaged aunt, Neat, and the profound change she brought to Charlayne’s life. Neat, with her enormous love, energy, simplicity and magnificent clarity, teaches the young Charlayne what it means to cherish life. A magical, compelling, personal portrait of a young woman’s coming of age, Neat is the story of an urban African-American girl bursting into adulthood, experiencing first love, and embracing both black-pride and feminism. An evening of pure joy, compelling insight, and hopefulness, Neat is an inspiration for every family.

Content Advisory: Neat deals with issues related to the civil rights era, police violence, and the treatment of those with cognitive impairments. A seizure is depicted on stage. 


Kandace Crystal

Kandace Crystal

Kandace (she/her) is a multi-hyphenate theatre maker who graduated with a BFA in Acting from Florida State University and is currently focusing on obtaining certification in Intimacy Direction and Choreography. Selected acting credits include: Searching for my Purple (Memoir Showcase), Black Lady Showcase (Black Artist Collective/The Old Globe), When We Were Young and Unafraid (Patio Playhouse), and A People’s Cuban Christmas Tale (Onstage Playhouse).  She hopes to continue using her art to tell the stories of people whose stories need to be told.  Feel free to keep up with her journey on social media, @KandaceCrystal on all platforms.

 Always remember, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”–George Santayana

Nicole Diaz-Pellot

Nicole Diaz-Pellot

Nicole is a performance and teaching artist specializing in movement research through Contemporary, Dunham, and Yoga Practices. She started dancing with San Diego Civic Dance and joined the San Diego Civic Dance Company under the direction of Andrea Feier. In 2014, Nicole moved to Philadelphia to attend University of Arts where she received her Bachelors of Fine Arts in Dance. She performed and trained under a variety of influential choreographers, including Wayne David, Gary Jeter, Jesse Zaritt, Olivier Tarpaga, as well as the legendary Manfred Fischbeck whom she worked under in his contemporary dance company, Group Motion.

With a focus on the holistic components of movement she received her 400hr Yoga Instructor Certification. She is in the process of receiving her Dunham Technique Certification and has been a part of the Katherine Dunham Technique Certification community since 2014. Nicole has dedicated 10 years to fostering inclusion through dance by choreographing and teaching Contemporary, Dunham, and Yoga, as well as outside of the studio as the Outreach Coordinator for Malashock Dance. 


Claire Simba

Claire Simba

CLAIRE SIMBA (director) is a director, actor, and writer based in Los Angeles, California. Originally from Cameroon, she worked in Paris (France) before moving to the United States.

She is the recipient of the Shiley Endowed Scholarship and the Craig Noel MFA award.

She has developed work with: Theatre de l’Orme, Theatre du Nord-Ouest, Moxie Theater, Scripps Ranch Theater and The Old Globe Theater.

Claire is a believer in collaborative processes and new forms. She loves to highlight movements and the imagination. She is passionate about black stories, reconstructing classics, stories for and about women, genre-defying multimedia work and film.

MFA Acting: USD/Old Globe, BFA Theatre Sorbonne University, Certificate in Theatre: Stella Adler, NYC.

Leigh Akin

Leigh is so excited to be the animator for”Neat”! She is the creativity manager at Westminster Presbyterian where she creates videos and downloadable content to accompany their events and programming. Last year she illustrated a meditation and recipe guide series published by the Presbyterian church as well as an online children’s book called “There’s Mustard in my Pocket!”. During COVID she produced and animated a series of cooking videos from her tiny studio apartment called: “Leigh Sings Songs and Makes Waffles.” you can check out more of her work at:, and follow her on instragram @alittleradishmedia

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