Psst.. I'm available for commissioned playwriting, directing and dramaturgy projects! Reach out to me at


Hi there! I'm Denise J. Hart, a playwright|dramaturge|director, raised in the midwest, who's lived in the nation's capitol for 30 years. I'm a bit of a globe trotter, which means I'll work pretty much anywhere a story takes me!

For the past 22 years I've helped shape the lives of hundreds of young adults through my role as area coordinator for playwriting at Howard University, where I'm a full professor.

My scholarly research is focused on African American Theatre. As a playwright and dramaturge I'm interested in exploring the intersections of race, class and identity, and the impact they have on cultural memory and family. My scholarship is driven by a commitment to document and preserve under researched narratives in the history of BlackTheatre, particularly black playwrights.

While you're here, please check out my work: current research, playwriting, dramaturgy and directing.

Down below is "What's Up Next for Denise"! There you can find out more about the projects I'm currently working on and where I'll show up next in the world. Hey, you never know, maybe we'll bump into each other!


Denise Joy, MFA

Research/Creative Work

Currently I'm researching and developing two essay's in the underrepresented research areas of the life and contributions of luminary Howard University professors, Alain L. Locke, known as "the Father of the Harlem Renaissance" and T. Montgomery Gregory.

  • Culture as Strategy: Alain Locke's Influence on the Making of the Howard Players 1912-1924

  • From Dream Fulfilled to Dream Deferred: Locke and Gregory's Struggle to Establish the Howard University Department of Dramatic Art in 1921

Howard Entertainment Program

Jan -May 2022 (Howard University), Faculty Fellow in the program, teaching and mentoring students in unique program partnership between Howard University and Amazon Studios.

May -July 2022 (Los Angeles), Faculty Fellow Extern in the Howard Entertainment Program. Working in Limited Drama Division at Amazon Studios in Los Angeles.

Guest Speaker

Amazing Grace Conservatory, Los Angeles

Conferences & Retreats

  • 2022 Playwrights Retreat with Unexpected Stage Company

  • 2022 Black Theatre Network Conference July 24-27th Detroit MI