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U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo – author, actress and singer

U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo is a Leominster, MA born Zimbabwean American grown author, actress, singer, and educator who has performed nationally and internationally in Zimbabwe, South Africa, Nigeria, Portugal, and Ireland. She was a featured storyteller on GBH Suitcase Stories for her immigrant story “Seeds, Soil & Water.” Her poetry collection Soul Psalms (She Writes Press) was described by David Updike as “written in a fearless female voice tempered with optimism and healing possibilities of love.” Fall of 2019 she was featured as a Performance Poet on Resistance Mic!, part of the A.R.T of Human Rights series, an ongoing collaboration between the American Repertory Theatre and Harvard Kennedy School’s Carr Center for Human Rights Policy alongside distinguished academic Dr. Cornell West. Her work was featured Fall 2019 – January 2020 in the exhibit at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston When Home Won’t Let You Stay: Migration Through Contemporary Art, which is a home-coming in a way since she performed in Ten’s the Limit, the opening dance performances at the ICA in 2006. She is a member of the New England Poetry Club and an advisory board member of Write On the Dot. She is currently working on a multi-modal poetic one-woman experience “Roots & Revelations” about identity and belonging stemming from family roots in Leominster and Zimbabwe/South Africa – an incredible history of her family connected to the Civil Rights Movement and Independence in Zimbabwe. In August of 2020, she founded the MAOKO PROJECT, an arts-based holistic creative consulting group guided by indigenous Ndau principles of self-determination and community. When not performing her work she is a fitness advocate and marathoner who was interviewed on Emmy Award-winning Basic Black on WGBH. Mhlaba-Adebo is often running 5Ks and marathons with her spouse and young son for charity.

Instagram: @theumeleniexperience
Twitter: @UMeleni

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