Meet The Team...

T. Donovan Simons
Playwright/Director/Producer
Founder, New Shoot Productions
 

 

Donovan@NewShootProductions.com

O: (770) 892-8877 | M: (770) 365-9019

F: (770) 892-8899

T. Donovan Simons. Donovan has been involved in the creative and performing arts since his early childhood. He performed at his first piano recital at the age of 7, wrote his first poem at the age of 9, landed his first part-time job as a photographer at the age of 14 and, at the age of 15, started working part-time as a graphic artist in a print shop. Donovan went on to join his high school band as a trombonist and xylophonist. In college, he played the baritone in the band. College is also where Donovan got his first taste of acting. He performed the part of Snoopy in the stage play “You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown”. In 1988, Donovan performed his first solo covering James Ingram’s song, “Just Once,” in the college talent show and earned first place in its category. In 1989 Donovan won first place for his piano performance in the instrumental category and third place overall for his solo singing performance of “Lost In The Fifties Tonight” by Ronnie Milsap. During his college years, Donovan toured and performed with the college elite choral choir, Pro-Música, his college gospel group, “Ecos de Amor” (“Echoes of Love”), and duo “Sparkles of Joy” throughout the United States, Canada and the Caribbean.

After his high school and college days, Donovan founded his own professional photography business, Simons Studios, and graphic design and printing company, Urban Graphix & Printing. He is working on the finishing touches of his self-published book of poetry, “The Inner Voice”. He continues to perform as a soloist and spoken word artist and is now putting his talents to use as a writer, producer and director of New Shoot Productions

Derrell@NewShootProductions.com

O: (770) 892-8877 | M: (443) 602-1599

F: (770) 892-8899

Derrell G. Owens

Asst. Director/Asst. Producer

A native of Baltimore, Derrell is quickly becoming a recognizable talent in theatre. Derrell was selected as the Black male of the Month for the June 2001 publication of AGoodBlackMan.com for his efforts to improve, maintain and promote positive images in the African American community through his writing.  In February 2000, his original play, The Family Mantle, won 1st place in the Eighteenth Annual Drama Competition sponsored by ABC2 and the Arena Players, Inc.  The play was produced for television and aired on ABC in honor of Black History Month.  Derrell received congratulatory e-mails from his mentors Charles Fuller (A Soldier’s Play) and David Talbert (First Sunday), who encouraged him to continue writing for the theatre and to continue to follow his dreams.

 

In May 2001, the revised full-length version of The Family Mantle won Derrell an Individual Artist Award in Playwriting from the Maryland State Arts Council and two Governor’s Citations.  The Family Mantle was selected by The Frank Silvera Writers Workshop in New York to be read during the Readers Theatre Series of new plays at the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston Salem, North Carolina. In July 2002, Derrell was honored with the Legacy of Excellence: Future Gateway Award from A Good Black Man, Incorporated for his continued work to promote positive images of Black men. In July 2003, Derrell’s original play, “Sessions in Autumn,” was selected once again by The Frank Silvera Writers Workshop in New York to be read during the Readers Theatre Series of new plays at the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston Salem, North Carolina. In July 2012, Derrell’s original one Act play, “A Love Like This” was selected to be performed at Baltimore’s ArtScape, America's largest free arts festival, attracting over 350,000 attendees over three days.

 

Derrell’s stage plays continue to break new ground with unique elements and thought provoking story lines. His increasing popularity has audiences comparing him to theatre greats August Wilson and Tyler Perry.  Derrell continues to place his faith in God and dreams big. In 2005, Derrell founded Zionward Productions, a theatre production company committed to producing professional stage plays with strong moral and spiritual content.  Through Zionward Productions, Derrell plans to begin touring his plays and already has his sights set on New York, Chicago, Charlotte, Columbus and L.A.  In the near future, Zionward Productions plans to host the Zion Christian Theatre Awards, the first ever formal Christian awards to honor the achievements of Christians in theatre arts.

Ace@NewShootProductions.com

O: (770) 892-8877 | M: (678) 508-0979

F: (770) 892-8899

Bruce "Ace" Jenner

Stage Manager

A native of Bermuda, Ijumo is a professional singer and recording artist.  Ijumo is graphic artist and also a professional photographer with over twenty years of photography experience.  Ijumo is the official production photographer for New Shoot Productions.  Ijumo is the founder and CEO of Images By Ijumo.

Ijumo@NewShootProductions.com

O: (770) 892-8877 | M: (678) 508-0979

F: (770) 892-8899

Ijumo Hayward

Photographer

A native of Baltimore, Derrell is quickly becoming a recognizable talent in theatre. Derrell was selected as the Black male of the Month for the June 2001 publication of AGoodBlackMan.com for his efforts to improve, maintain and promote positive images in the African American community through his writing.  In February 2000, his original play, The Family Mantle, won 1st place in the Eighteenth Annual Drama Competition sponsored by ABC2 and the Arena Players, Inc.  The play was produced for television and aired on ABC in honor of Black History Month.  Derrell received congratulatory e-mails from his mentors Charles Fuller (A Soldier’s Play) and David Talbert (First Sunday), who encouraged him to continue writing for the theatre and to continue to follow his dreams.

 

In May 2001, the revised full-length version of The Family Mantle won Derrell an Individual Artist Award in Playwriting from the Maryland State Arts Council and two Governor’s Citations.  The Family Mantle was selected by The Frank Silvera Writers Workshop in New York to be read during the Readers Theatre Series of new plays at the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston Salem, North Carolina. In July 2002, Derrell was honored with the Legacy of Excellence: Future Gateway Award from A Good Black Man, Incorporated for his continued work to promote positive images of Black men. In July 2003, Derrell’s original play, “Sessions in Autumn,” was selected once again by The Frank Silvera Writers Workshop in New York to be read during the Readers Theatre Series of new plays at the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston Salem, North Carolina. In July 2012, Derrell’s original one Act play, “A Love Like This” was selected to be performed at Baltimore’s ArtScape, America's largest free arts festival, attracting over 350,000 attendees over three days.

 

Derrell’s stage plays continue to break new ground with unique elements and thought provoking story lines. His increasing popularity has audiences comparing him to theatre greats August Wilson and Tyler Perry.  Derrell continues to place his faith in God and dreams big. In 2005, Derrell founded Zionward Productions, a theatre production company committed to producing professional stage plays with strong moral and spiritual content.  Through Zionward Productions, Derrell plans to begin touring his plays and already has his sights set on New York, Chicago, Charlotte, Columbus and L.A.  In the near future, Zionward Productions plans to host the Zion Christian Theatre Awards, the first ever formal Christian awards to honor the achievements of Christians in theatre arts.