EURweb's own LaRita "Jazzy Rita" Shelby named Honorary Chair of Women's Theatre Festival of Memphis 2014

EURweb’s own LaRita “Jazzy Rita” Shelby named Honorary Chair of Women’s Theatre Festival of Memphis 2014  (Photo credit: Bk Thomas)

*Memphis, Tennessee: The second biennial Women’s Theatre Festival of Memphis (WTFM) has announced that LaRita Shelby has been named Honorary Chairperson of this year’s exciting festival August 7 -9, 2014.

Miss Shelby is a former Memphian, an actress, singer, writer, broadcaster and media professional who has appeared on the air, on stage and on screen around the globe.

The Women’s Theatre Festival of Memphis will shine the spotlight on the works of female playwrights, directors, and artists, etc. during a three day event specifically designed to give more exposure to women in the arts. The event takes place at various venues across the city.

As the Honorary Chairperson, LaRita will serve as WTFM spokesperson and emcee of the Gyneka Awards Gala, the opening ceremony for WTFM. Gyneka is taken from the Greek word, which denied Grecian women the right to perform in the theatre. This award represents barrier breakers and strong women who never gave up their God ordained talent.

Karen Moore Founder, Producer of Women's Theatre Festival of Memphis, Inc.

Karen Moore
Founder, Producer of Women’s Theatre Festival of Memphis, Inc.

WTFM Founder and Executive Producer Karen Moore comments: “As we highlight and recognize women for their artistic talent and dedication, while teaching and inspiring others through a series of workshops, performances and networking opportunities, we could not have chosen a more fitting Honorary Chair that exemplifies what we are about than LaRita Shelby, and because she is a former Memphian we can’t wait to bring her home.”

LaRita responds to having been chosen: “I got my start in the theatre in Memphis and I received exemplary training. I accept this honor with a charge to build domestic and global cohesiveness within the creative community, and to forge new alliances among those in the creative and performing arts.”

36 performances, workshops and readings will take place in four different venues in the Midtown Memphis Theatre District. WTFM received submissions from over 50 theatrical and dance companies in the U.S. and abroad and this year has accepted an international submission from Australia, making this the first international women’s theatre festival in the world.

WTFM is a sponsored project of Women of Style, Spirit & Success, Inc., a 501(c) 3) not-for-profit charitable organization. WTFM’s mission is to provide educational opportunities and performances that represent women on a broader scale and bring recognition to women who have contributed to the theatre over the years.

Currently, LaRita Shelby has a stage production in development with noted Memphis playwright Levi Frazier, Jr. and she is a contributing reporter for Shelby’s film acting credits include Walk By Faith, Kings of The Evening and South Central. On Friday, August 8th at 3:00 pm at The Circuit Playhouse, LaRita will conduct a special workshop titled Acting from the Stage to the Soundstage. This summer, Miss Shelby is also celebrating her graduation as Summa Cum Laude from Touro University Worldwide with a Masters in Media and Communication Psychology, with a concentration in Media Leadership. LaRita’s BA in Theatre & Communication Arts is from LA’s Loyola Marymount.

“I believe that our stories give us the power to transform ourselves and others. I wholeheartedly appreciate anyone and everyone who supports the Women’s Theatre Festival of Memphis,” says LaRita Shelby, Honorary Chair of WTFM.

Huge congratulations are in order for founders Karen Moore and Ruby O’Gray, the WTFM producers, to all of the playwrights, directors, performers, production staff and to the new honorary chair of this stellar event. Donors are still needed and sponsor opps are still available. To donate to the WTFM click here. For more information on the festival or to register go to:

Or Contact: [email protected]

Call 901.213.7566 for further information.