She acted and directed Ntozake Shange's play, "For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow is Enuf," in a Classic Contemporary American Plays production at the Ford Theatre in Los Angeles, California with Jackee Harry, Iona Morris, Tonya Pinkins, and Portia Realer
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I feel it is vital to understand your own culture because the history that you are defines, in a great sense, who you can be in the present time. I find that so very often, as an African-American woman, who I am is being defined by other people rather than myself.
In 1990, with the help of Phylicia Rashad
of "Cosby" fame, James Stovall
, Hattie and her husband, composer Harold Wheeler
adapted Langston Hughes
"Black Nativity" at The Master Theater in New York. The off-Broadway production, entitled "Nativity: A Life Story," won five New York Audelco Awards, including Best Director for Stovall and Ms. Winston and Best Musical for the 1990-1991 season.