Hometown: Memphis, TN
high school: Craigmont
college: Columbia University
MAJOR: African American Studies
GRAD. PROGRAM: American Repertory Theatre at Harvard University (2005, MFA); The Julliard School (2009)
Katori is an American playwright, journalist, and actress who continues to use her mind and her pen to further the legacy of her forefathers and to help young African Americans use education to achieve their dreams. She is a graduate of Columbia University (BA,2003), the American Repertory Theatre Institute for Advanced Theatre Training at Harvard University (MFA,2005) , and the Juilliard School’s Lila Acheson Wallace playwriting program (2009). Her play, The Mountaintop, about Martin Luther King Jr.’s last night before his assassination, premiered in London in 2009 and opened on Broadway in 2011– starring Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett . She received the best new play award at the Laurence Olivier Awards in March 2010 for The Mountaintop –becoming the first black woman in history to win the award.
Katori’s other plays include Hoodoo Love, produced Off-Broadway, Hurt Village, winner of the 2011 Susan Smith Blackburn Award, Saturday Night/Sunday Morning, WHADDABLOODCLOT!!!!, and Pussy Valley.
Katori is currently an artist in residence at The Pershing Square Signature Theatre in New York. She has been published as a book reviewer, journalist, and essayist in The Boston Globe, Essence, Newsweek and The New York Times. She has also been a Kennedy Center Playwriting Fellow.