Ardre Orie takes Atlanta on a Journey through The Heart of a Man

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Do you dare to explore the intriguing, startling, blustering truths held within… The Heart of a Man?

Do you dare to hear the deepest, most intricate battles a man faces within? Can you feel his pain, disdain or his shame? Can you understand the validity of his claim?

“The heart of a man is complex in nature… journey with me if you dare.” – The Heart of A Man

On Saturday, May 14th the premiere Ardre Orie’s stage play, The Heart of a Man took the people of Atlanta, Georgia on this very journey at the Landmark Midtown Art Cinema. This special presentation was an experience from entry; a red carpet affair where cocktails and couture preceded the show with dapperly dressed gentlemen handing single roses to each lady in passing. The energy in the room was lively and the audience turnout was overwhelming (I’m talking wall to wall!).

The intent of this stage play is to “light conversations on fire” and that it did. The Heart of a Man is a collection of soliloquies and monologues that reveal a side of the story we don’t get the opportunity to hear too often. Each piece is laced with alarming truths and intrepid vulnerability, as the men give a riveting account of how they see and experience the world through relationships, society and self-discovery.

“Women easily talk about their emotions and feelings however, men are not conditioned to easily share their feelings. This play allows women the opportunity to listen as men speak on a variety of issues such as cheating, healthy marriages, sexuality and religion.” – Ardre Orie

Cast members (left to right) Stevie Baggs Jr., Neil Carr, Saveon Armstrong, Jonathan Castillo, John Wesley.

As dashing as they were talented, the 17 member all-male cast, draped in black and red shirt and tie ensembles conveyed their messages to the audience in an audaciously intimate manner. The stories came directly from the hearts and minds of the cheating man, the good man, the meal-ticket man, the man stuck in the friend-zone, the abusive man, the abused man, the resilient man and more. On this journey we witnessed feelings of hurt, betrayal, victory, entitlement, entrapment, lust, confusion, triumph, love, brokenness and unrequited love.

Members of the cast with playwright Ardre Orie; (left to right) Princeton Echols, Bryan Hibbard, Beestroh Manteca, Quentin Harris, Marcus Middleton

Special cast members included Stevie Baggs (Atlanta Health Ambassador/NFL), Neil Carr (Saints and Sinners), Leon Slim (Michael Bend Show), Bryan Hibbard (The Walking Dead), Clifford Johnson (The Mikki Howard Story), and Producer, Rasheda Randle (The Emmett Till Story). The presentation also featured several local fashion designers with runway displays of their men’s fashion collections and couture designs.

Ardre Orie and Stevie Baggs Jr.

I must highlight that writer, film director and advocate (The Beautiful Mile), Ardre Orie herself was absolutely stunning in a rich red floor-length gown. This industry trailblazer has produced stage plays, books, documentaries and special events that ignite community conversation. When asked why she decided to write The Heart of a Man, Ardre Orie stated:

“I recognized the immediate disconnect between men and women. Because men are such a tremendous factor in the self-esteem of woman, I was compelled to tell their truths in a way that women could fully understand.” – Ardre Orie

And for that, we thank Ardre Orie and look forward to experience the journey she leads us on next.

Join the digital conversation with @iamardreorie and @_theheartofaman_.

Visit the TheHeartofAMan.com to meet the cast, view photos and find information about the production.

View The Heart of a Man Trailer

Ardre Orie and family

Courtneii Ciara

A Florida raised Cali-girl residing in Atlanta. I’m a bubbly, free-spirited ambivert with a passion for all things artistic. An artist by nature; a light by choice. You can find me somewhere between a stanza and a melody. Be light, be love, be you.

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