New Heritage Theatre Group (NHTG) is the oldest black nonprofit theater company in New York City, founded in 1964 by the late Roger Furman, a playwright, director and actor who began his career in the 1940s with the American Negro Theatre in Harlem.
In 1997 Jamal Joseph became executive artistic director. The NHTG presents entertaining, informative theatrical productions, staged readings and documentary shorts and films. Through its organizations Impact Repertory Theatre, Furman Theatre Rep and New York Heritage Films, new Heritage gives training, exposure and experience to new and emerging artists. The works reflect the historical, social and political experiences of African and Latino descendants in America and abroad. NHTG seeks to bring attention to works by international writers, directors and artists who lack exposure in the United States.
IMPACT promotes the healthy development of young people ages 12 to 19 by providing a learning environment that encourages, nurtures and challenges its students. It offers arts and leadership workshops, performance opportunities, community service, tutoring and mentoring to its participants. The program curriculum encourages its students to focus on life and pre-professional skills, literacy, culture and political issues.
Since its inception in 1997, IMPACT has worked with over 300 young people and staged more than 300 performances to live audiences totaling well over 150,000. IMPACT members have performed at colleges, libraries, outdoor festivals, homeless shelters, museums, churches, corporate events and penal facilities.
Prospective members experience an eight-week intensive leadership training program (IMPACT Boot Camp). Here they learn the fundamentals of leadership, service and public speaking. Impact Boot Camp trainees also learn the repertory performance material.