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Introducing the cast of A Thousand Fibers!

The cast of A Thousand Fibers is composed of experienced actors and community members with little or no acting experience. This casting choice is informed by our values of mutual mentorship and honoring the artist in each person.

First, we present Yajaira Paredes in the role of Maria Melocotones, the colorful Fairhill resident with numerous fibers of connection, conflict, and care.

Yajaira is a Venezuelan actress who has worked in TV, film and theatre and is a co-founder of Teatro del Sol, a bilingual theatre company in Philadelphia. She has recently performed with Philadelphia Artists Collective (PAC) in The Sea Voyage, with Teatro del Sol at the Arden in Good Cuban Girls, and with Theatre Ariel in Secret Things.

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"I think people will enjoy watching very much this play because it is a story of real life. People will feel connected with some stories, and it will make an impact in them. It is a fun play; it will make people laugh and cry."

-Yajaira Paredes 

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Thomas Freeman in the role of Alex, a Fairhill resident, and one of the many who had the honor of knowing "Tia Maria".

"The thing that excites me the most will be people getting to see me do what I do best, which is act.

I think people should see the play because it might remind them of their roots"

-Thomas Freeman

Raymond Thomas in the role of Sam.

Maria practically raised Sam and took him as her own. Sam had always felt the pressure of not disappointing her while also feeling jealous that Maria consistently poured into so many people from the neighborhood, not just him.

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"I grew up in the neighborhood of North Philadelphia in the mid 70s to mid 90's. What I remember most is there was a sense of family throughout the neighborhood blocks and streets. I can relate to the theme of family that runs throughout this play."
-Raymond Thomas

Charvez Grant in the role of Jackson.

Jackson and Sam grew up together with "Tia Maria" but they each have very different perspectives of Maria's legacy.

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"What excites me about the play is the fact that it’s about a real area in Philadelphia which makes the story that much more authentic and relatable."-Charvez Grant

Blahir Sargent in the role of Alice

Alice and Maria grew up together in Northern Liberties. They did everything together and supported each other through tough times in school.

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"I think people should see the play because it is something positive and inspiring for other neighborhood children who may struggle with doing the right things."-Blahir Sargent

Dacia Nedd in the role of the interviewer/Roberta

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"Something that really relates and sticks close to me in my experience about this play is Maria and her passion and drive to see her neighborhood flourish despite the circumstances and the rumors that go around about her neighborhood being the badlands."- Dacia Nedd

Stay tuned to learn about more of the cast members!

Full cast:

Yajaira Paredes (older Maria)

Leila Saxton (younger Maria)

Curtis Saxton (Angel)

Thomas Freeman (Alex)

Charvez Grant (Jackson)

Dacia Nedd (Interviewer/Roberta)

Ray Thomas (Sam)

Nina Cottman (young Jeanie)

Yeriel Cortes (young Angel)

Blahir Sargent (Alice)

Hector Espinosa (Carl)

Anthony Cornatzer (Mr. Burkhardt/Priest)