Wednesday, July 01, 2020

Berko: HERE, THERE AND EVERWHERE: HAMILTON, CELTIC TIGER, BERNEDETTE PETERS IN CONCERT, CLEVELAND PUBLIC THEATERE, PROJECT SING OUT, OHIO LIGHT OPERA and more….



HERE, THERE AND EVERWHERE:  HAMILTON, CELTIC TIGER, BERNEDETTE PETERS IN CONCERT, CLEVELAND PUBLIC THEATERE, PROJECT SING OUT, OHIO LIGHT OPERA and more….

Roy Berko (Cleveland Critics Circle, American Theatre Critics Association)

CELTIC TIGER, STARRING FAMED IRISH DANCER-CHOREOGRAPHER MICHAEL FLATLEY

The YouTube channel The Shows Must Go On! continues July 3 with the Celtic Tiger, starring famed Irish dancer-choreographer Michael Flatley.
Flatley introduced Irish dance to the American mainstream back in the 90s with Riverdance and Lord of the Dance, both of which went on to tour the world. A few years later, Flatley returned in 2005 with Celtic Tiger, a show that explores the history of Ireland and the many moments of civil unrest that have led to various freedoms in the island nation. 

The stream will be available for 48 hours at 2 PM ET on YouTube.

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HAMILTON

The cinematic capture of Hamilton drops July 3 on Disney+.  The platform starts at $6.99 a month). For more information, click here.
Be aware that many televisions are not capable of downloading the app so before you enroll for a subscription make sure your set is compatible.  (None of the smart TVs in our house will handle it.). 

This is Hamilton, beginning to end. The only lyric cuts are the removal of two uses of "f*ck" so that the film could receive a PG-13 rating (one will be muted, the other replaced with a record scratch).
To see a trailer for Hamilton, click here.

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BERNADETTE PETERS IN CONCERT

For the first time online, watch an extraordinary evening with Broadway leading lady and three-time Tony Award recipient Bernadette Peters in concert. The free stream is set for 8 pm Eastern on Friday, July 10, and can be watched at broadwaycares.org/bernadette.
 
Throughout the evening, get the scoop from Peters and Broadway and television star Michael Urie as they talk about the concert and share insider stories. The one-night-only benefit concert, originally performed at Broadway's Minskoff Theatre in 2009, features spectacular performances of songs by Stephen Sondheim, Rodgers & Hammerstein and more
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CLEVELAND PUBLIC THEATRE PRESENTS SAVORY TANHA

From July 9-11 @ 8 pm Cleveland Public Theatre will present SAVORY TANHA, sixteen short plays as part of its Encounters (Here and Now Series).   The series if written and directed by David Hansen.

Each presentation, which is a virtual memory of long longing and loss, happiness and helpfulness, and navigating the pathways of human desire, will be 50 minutes and be limited to 60 “seats” (a live presentation via Zoom.)  

For tickets, which are $1, and information, go to  https://www.cptonline.org/performances/seasons/2020-2021/savory taṇha/

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PROJECT SING OUT!

Project Sing Out!, supporting the Educational Theatre Foundation and their efforts to increase access to arts education in under-resourced schools, will stream live on Playbill's YouTube channel and Facebook page July 20 at 7 PM ET.

The event will offer musical and spoken word performances and special appearances, including Chita RiveraVanessa Williams and Audra McDonald.

For information go to:  https://t2conline.com/project-sing-out-a-one-night-only-benefit-for-arts-education/
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BROADWAY TO REMAIN DARK UNTIL JANUARY 3, 2021

As performing arts organizations across the country announce plans to forgo their fall programming, Broadway is following suit. The Broadway League has announced that all productions will remain closed through at least January 3, 2021.

While it is now official, the decision does not come as a surprise. The League stated in May that while shows would be dark through September 6, this date serves more as a determination of how late productions would offer refunds and exchanges than as a look into when the curtain will rise again.

Once that is able to happen, audiences can expect shows to return on a rolling basis, rather than on one specific date. Details concerning this scheduling and ticketing will be announced in the coming weeks.

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THEATER PLANS DIVIDERS FOR SOCIAL DISTANCING

Like most other large regional nonprofit and commercial theaters, the Wilma in Philadelphia plans to stay closed through the fall.

But this theater has an unusual idea for how to reopen when the time comes: it will prevent theatergoers from breathing on one another by separating them with wooden dividers.

The Wilma, which normally seats 300 people in a traditional auditorium, says it will build a new structure, seating as many as 100 or as few as 35, on its stage. The two-tiered structure, which can be configured in the round or as a semicircle, is based in part on Shakespeare’s Globe Theater.
The most distinctive feature is that each party of patrons — whether they be solo or in groups of up to four — is seated in a box, physically separated from all other parties.

For the whole story go to:
https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/01/theater/wilma-theater-social-distancing.html?campaign_id=28&emc=edit_cu_20200701&instance_id=19916&nl=theater-update&regi_id=136086792&segment_id=32344&te=1&user_id=5212a49ff07ce1fbfbc4c7323959cc70

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OHIO LIGHT OPERA TO BE SILENT THIS SUMMER

The boards on the stage at the College of Wooster are silent this summer. Ohio Light Opera has cancelled its season for the first time since its inception in 1979. Well, not cancelled really — it will perform the scheduled 2020 season next year.

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Wednesday, June 24, 2020

News about 1776, CPH/DOBAMA ARTISTIC DIRECTORS, OHIO SHAKS, FALSETTOS, BOYS IN THE BAND & MASCULINITY MAX and JOSH GROGAN



THE MUSICAL THEATRE PROJECT’S BILL RUDMAN DISCUSSES 1776 MUSICAL

For a must-see experience, watch THE MUSICAL THEATRE PROJECT’S BILL RUDMAN DISCUSSES THE MUSICAL 1776
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZpZk6qERoc&feature=youtu.be

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CLEVELAND PLAY HOUSE AND DOBAMA’S ARTISTIC DIRECTORS DISCUSS HOW THEATRE IS MADE

Artistic Director Laura Kepley chats with Nathan Motta, Artistic Director of Dobama Theatre about music, artistic leadership, and the extraordinary theatre that is made in and for Cleveland.

Together, they’ll offer an inside look at Nathan’s work at CPH as music director for such productions as Every Good Boy Deserves Favor (with The Cleveland Orchestra), Shakespeare in Love, and Antigone, as well as his award-winning directing at Dobama Theatre, now celebrating its 60th Anniversary season. A fun and frank conversation that is sure to strike a chord with musicians and theatre-makers alike!  


For information:  https://mail.yahoo.com/d/folders/4/messages/102800?.src=fp&guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly9sb2dpbi55YWhvby5jb20v&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAAHhFJ2XZQprnZnAYEsK4QGdIrOHKv3Ol76TAQ404hdD0M0JCXFR-d-Ly42hS9EqSRg1KXTNcKIkzhRFiyVQjgAk0MftaZARs1sbXHNEB2DZDd3VkiZhT7f7nQrpchLy

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OHIO SHAKS RETURNS TO STAN HYWET HALL AN GARDENS FOR SUMMER 2020
 

With the approval of the Summit County Health Commissioner, and in keeping with the government recommendations for safety and social distancing, OHIO SHAKS will stage THE COMPLETE WORKS OF WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE (ABRIDGED) (REVISED), a 97-minute play with no intermission from July 17-Auguat 9, 2020.  Gates will open for picnicking and staggered entry at 6.  Performances start at 7:30.   Tickets are $30 with under 18s paying #15. Pre-sale only as there will be NO onsite ticket sales.

For tickets and info:  http://www.ohioshakespearefestival.com/complete-works


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FALSETTOS SING-ALONG

A special sing-along edition of William Finn and James Lapine’s Falsettos will stream for free on BroadwayHD June 25 at 8 PM ET as part of the streaming platform’s ongoing Pride celebration. You can stream it here.
Lapine directed the revival, which starred Christian Borle as Marvin, Andrew Rannells as Whizzer, Brandon Uranowitz as Mendel, and Stephanie J. Block as Trina—each of whom earned Tony nominations for their work. 
The musical is about a man navigating his evolving family dynamic after coming out to his wife and son.

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BOYS IN THE BAND & MASCULINITY MAX TO BE PRESENTED AS PART OF PRIDE PLAYS

Pride Plays has announced an all-star cast for its upcoming live stream of Mart Crowley’s The Men From the Boys, the 2002 sequel to The Boys in the Band, which won the 2019 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play. The stream airs 7PM ET June 26 at Playbill.com/PridePlays.
On June 27 Pride Plays live streams MJ Kaufman’s Masculinity Max, a comedy which tells a story of genders, how people perform them, and how it makes them feel.  Watch the play live at 7 PM ET at Playbill.com/PridePlays
The festival will cap off with Playbill’s Pride Spectacular, a musical celebration of Pride, hosted by Michael Urie on June 28.

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JOSH GROBAN LIVE STREAMED ON JUNE 27

Josh Groban, who was Tony-nominated for his Broadway debut in Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, will offer a live stream concert June 27 at 4 PM ET. 
Tickets for the live stream are on sale by clicking here. Fans who purchase a ticket will receive an access code to watch the concert on JoshGroban.com. The stream will be accessible for 48 hours at the start of the event.

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Thursday, June 18, 2020

THEATER NEWS FROM HERE AND ELSEWHERE:  BALDWIN WALLACE, OHIO SHAKESPEARE, KARAMU, CHAGRIN VALLEY LITTLE THEATRE, OTTERBEIN & KENT STATE, and more…

Roy Berko (Cleveland Critics Circle and American Theatre Critics Association)

BW’S ANGELS IN AMERICA PART ONE: MILLENNIUM APPROACHES

Five years ago, Baldwin Wallace University produced Angels in America, which had a significant impact on the audience but also on the lives of those who worked on it.  When they were faced with a lack of creative outlets due to present pandemic, the cast discussed reuniting to read the show.
In that spirit, they invite you to a broadcast staged reading of the show. on Wednesday, June 24 via private Live Stream 8:00pm EST (7:00 CST, 6:00pm MST, 5:00pm PST).
To access the live performance, the cast is asking that you give a donation of ANY size to The Black AIDS Institute by visiting  https://blackaids.org/donate/ or by texting “BlackAIDS” to 91999. After you have donated, email a screenshot or receipt of your donation to angelsreading4bai@gmail.com and you will receive the private info to access the live stream.


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OHIO SHAKESPEARE presents ROBIN HOOD:  AN ADVENTURE WITH MUSIC


On Saturday May 27th at 11:00am, Ohio Shakes comes to your living room as a live radio play, fit for the whole family to enjoy together.
In collaboration with The Hudson Library & Historical Society, they will present their original production ROBIN HOOD: AN ADVENTURE, WITH MUSIC.
Tune to the Library's Facebook page. It will also be live streamed on the Ohio Shakes Facebook page.

Not a Facebook person? They are recording the performance and post it here the next day.


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ASK QUESTIONS OF OTTERBEIN AND KENT STATE THEATRE FACULTIES


Faculty from theatre programs at Otterbein University and Kent State University will be live on Playbill, June 19, at 1PM ET, to answer questions about their specialized college theatre experiences, audition tips, and more.  To submit a question, click here.
The talk is part of Playbill and The Growing Studio's new weekly series College Theatre Auditions. Each Friday at 1PM ET.  Interviews will be available to watch on demand after the live streams at Playbill.com/CollegeThatreAuditions.


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FREEDOM ON JUNETEENTH DEBUTS AS KARAMU HOUSE’S FIRST-EVER, STREAMING THEATRICAL PRODUCTION


Freedom on Juneteenth, an original theatrical production from America’s oldest Black producing theatre, debuts on Friday, June 19, 2020 at 7PM EST/4PM PST on social media and streaming platforms.
Immediately following the theatrical program, Freedom on Juneteenth continues with a live, 30-minute panel discussion and interactive dialogue with community leaders on the recent developments of the #BlackLivesMatter movement (and the continuing police brutality and murders of African Americans).


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CVLT PRESENTS THE TURN OF THE SCREW ON-LINE

Chagrin Valley Little Theatre will present The Turning of The Screw Hatcher’s to an online audience on Friday, June 26 and Saturday, June 27.  

A $13 admission, purchased via credit card or PayPal at CVLT.org, will give audience members password access to a private page in the Little Theatre’s website on which they may view the specially pre-recorded performance at their convenience on either date.


Interpreting Henry James' eerie 1898 novella, Jeffrey Hatcher adds his own turns to the suspenseful tale of a young governess is charged with the care of two young children. When the specters of the estate's previous caretaker and her sadistic lover begin to make their presence known, the governess and the audience begin to question what is real and what is imaginary.
Reserve Now


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JOE’S PUB CONCERT OF THE GORGEOUS NOTHINGS

On June 20, Playbill presents a live stream release of Joe’s Pub concert of The Gorgeous Nothings. Developed by Life Jacket Theatre Company. 
The Gorgeous Nothings examines a prison on Welfare Island in NYC during the ‘30s where LGBTQIA+ folx were locked up. Conceived by Trevor Russ, the evening features moving performances of songs from the era.

Hosted by Gideon Glick, Telly Leung, and Beth Kirkpatrick, 
The Gorgeous Nothings stars Kevin Smith Kirkwood (Kinky Boots), James Jackson Jr. (A Strange Loop), Stephen DeRosa (Boardwalk Empire), The Skivvies’ Nick Cearley, Aaron Kaburick (Mrs. Doubtfire), Devin Ilaw (Miss Saigon), Seth Sikes (Seth Sikes Sings… concert series), with special guest emcee Beth Kirkpatrick (Hello, Dolly!), and introduces Maclain Whelan Dassatti, Kyle Price, and Benjamin Walker. 

The concert, which is a benefit for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, will be available to stream for 48 hours beginning 8PM ET June 20.

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APOLLO’S FIRE DEVELOPS NEW PERFORMANCE MODEL AND ANNOUNCES NEW SEASON

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, AF launches a bold, new business model: “Attend the Concert in Person or At Home.” (Tap title to access the announcement.)

Subscribers and ticket-buyers can choose to attend the concert in person, OR receive a password to watch the exclusive concert-video 1 week later at home. 

At concerts, Apollo’s Fire will implement Ohio’s health guidelines at the time of each concert. This may include social distancing, facial masks, capacity limits, and quick temperature checks at the door (using digital forehead scanners)

GRAMMY-winning baroque orchestra announces its 29th season under founding Artistic Director Jeannette Sorrell.  The season comprises 27 subscription concerts (six programs performed in multiple venues across Northeast Ohio); two “Baroque Bistro” programs presented at popular restaurants; and two sets of Family Concerts.  
New this year, AF is offering interactive ZOOM events with featured performers and Visiting Scholar, Dr. Thomas Forrest Kelly. 

Sunday, June 14, 2020

Solon High grad produced a virtual concert, CWRU recognized for stellar theatre department, pride plays to be performed, Bard at the Gate and The Madness of George III to be streamed, and more….




J.R.Heckman produced a virtual benefit concert for Josh Groban's Find Your Light Foundation

On Friday, June 12, Jimmy Award finalist J.R. Heckman, a Solon High School grad, produced a virtual benefit concert for Josh Groban's Find Your Light Foundation, which supports underserved music and arts education programs across the country.  The concert featured Cleveland theatrical talent and Broadway professionals such as Michael McElroy, Telly Leung, and Crystal Monee Hall

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CWRU RECOGNIZED AS BEING ONE OF THE BEST 25 COLLEGE DRAMA PROGRAMS AROUND THE WORLD

  

Case Western Reserve University’s drama program has been selected by The Hollywood Reporter as one of the world’s 25 top drama programs.  The selection was the result of a survey of alums, academics and industry pros.


The recognition states, “Under new director Donald Carrier, this program has refocused its curriculum on developing skills to help grads make it as working actors — including a 15-week film-acting class. The MFA program is tuition-free and guarantees students an Equity card through its association with the famed Cleveland Playhouse.”
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PRIDE PLAYS 2020

Playbill will present Pride Plays 2020 in celebration of Pride month. The festival, taking place throughout the month of June will feature four primetime live streams of key LGBTQIA+ plays and culminate in a musical celebration with Playbill's Pride Spectacular June 28. 

The Pride Plays will include Donja R. Love’s one in two at 7PM ET June 12; Masculinity Max by MJ Kaufman at 7PM ET June 19; The Five Lesbian Brothers reuniting for a one-night-only live reading of their 1992 play Brave Smiles...Another Lesbian Tragedy at 7PM ET June 22; and Mart Crowley’s The Men From the Boys, directed by Zachary Quinto, at 7PM ET June 26. 
All live streams will air on Playbill.com/PridePlays

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PAULA VOGEL'S NEW DIGITAL SERIES BARD AT THE GATE

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel's new digital series Bard at the Gate, intended to spotlight works not seen by a wide audience, has been revamped in support of Black Lives Matter. The series will now begin June 25 at 7 PM ET on a YouTube pre-taped web-stream with Kermit Frazier's 1978 work Kernel of Sanity, which was already slated as a part of Bard at the Gate. 
The play examines the close relationship between a young Black actor and an older Caucasian actor with whom he had previously appeared in a production of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. The reading will be followed by a live online discussion of the play.  To register for the discussion and for the streaming link, click here.

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TWILIGHT: LOS ANGELES 

PBS will offer a stream of Anna Deavere Smith's drama Twilight: Los Angeles through August 7. Filmed by Marc Levin in 2001, Smith stars in a solo show that explores the aftermath of the 1992 Rodney King riots in Los Angeles. To watch, click here.

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THE MADNESS OF GEORGE III

National Theatre at Home is streaming the Nottingham Playhouse's The Madness of George III, starring Mark Gatiss beginning Thursday, June 11 at 2pm ET. The production, which you can watch below, will stream for free for a week.  Click here:  https://www.broadwayworld.com/article/VIDEO-Watch-National-Theatre-At-Homes-THE-MADNESS-OF-GEORGE-III--Live-Today-20200611

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REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS FOR THE 1ST ANNUAL THE CITY [CLE] IS OUR STAGE

The sponsors of City Is Our Stage, are looking for representations of how members of the CLE artistic community are dealing with the Covid-19 crisis.  

Priorities for inclusion are for individual artists or groups of artists sheltering together in the fields of Music, Theatre, Musical Theatre, Poetry, and/or Dance and reside in a place that is within a 15-mile radius of downtown Cleveland. 

The mobile audience members would receive a map to drive to 5-10 different addresses to witness a 5-to-10 minute performance.  These performances would take place on private property and could be on the front porches, lawns, driveways, sidewalks, parking lots or venues of area artists. Performing artists must own the property or have permission to use the location for this purpose from the property owner.

All proceeds from this event will be split evenly between the participating submissions. Ticket prices will range between $20 - $40 per motor vehicle depending upon the number of performances available.

Proposals will be accepted Tuesday, June 30, 2020. Artists would be informed of their acceptance by July 15th.  Performance dates would August 15-16 and/or August 22-23, depending upon the number of participants and audience interest.

Information requested:
  • Artist/Group Name & Contact information:
  • Type of performance: Dance, Theatre, Musical Theatre, Music, Poetry:
  • Address of performance location:
  • How many cars can you legally accommodate at your location? (i.e. 2: one in my driveway & one on the street if I block off a space with cones.):
  • Artistic Performance Specifics: 3-5 sentences describing the performance and where would you perform this at your residence (i.e. front yard, porch, balcony, stairwell, sidewalk, etc.):
  • Technical Performance specifics: what you wish to perform, is it live or recorded music, is there video, props, etc. (no more than 1 page):
  • Online video links of previous work, excerpts (preferred); please indicate how the work sample submitted is relevant to the work you are proposing for this event. Preferred clips demonstrating ability to integrate your art within a unique venue if available:
  • Professional reviews; artist/company bio, history; YouTube or Vimeo links to demo reel (for publicity purposes):
  • Any press quotes about the artist(s):
  • The approximate number of performers (keep in mind that social distancing rules should apply for those not sheltering together):
  • Approximate length of the performance:
Please send proposals  or questions to thecityisourstage@gmail.com with “The City Is Our Stage” in the subject line.

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PLAYBILL’S PRIDE SPECTACULAR CONCERT 

Four-time Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein, two-time Tony nominee Brandon Victor Dixon, Tony honoree Michael McElroy, Jagged Little Pill’s Celia Rose Gooding and Lauren Patten, as well as Tony nominee John Tartaglia, Eden Espinosa, L Morgan Lee, Mars Rucker, and John McGinty will perform on June 28 at 8PM ETas part of the free Playbill.com/PridePlays benefit for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. 

Featuring iconic musical numbers that highlight LGBTQIA+ stories in musical theatre the concert caps off a month of programming from Playbill and Pride Plays. Learn more and tune in to the free broadcast here and donate to Broadway Cares.


Tuesday, June 09, 2020

Relevant PLAYGROUND FESTIVAL OF NEW WORKS places spotlight on Black Americans





The PLAYGROUND FESTIVAL OF NEW WORKS is a leading showcase of new plays and new playwrights. This year, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the festival marks its 25th anniversary, by presenting its offerings on-line.  The resulting fest is a 25-event covering 5-weeks, all live-streamed via Zoom, and largely free of charge.

On June 5 and 6, 2020, the offering was Genevieve Jesse’s THE RENDERING CYCLE, directed by Margo Hall.  The original development was by Lauren Spencer.  

Genevieve Jesse is based jointly in the Bay Area and Puerto Rico.  She was a semi-finalist for the 2019 O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, and is the recipient of a California Arts Council Artists-in-Communities grant for THE RENDERING CYCLE.

The 2-hour, without intermission production, was a series of ten short plays.
  
Appropriately, in light of the Black Live’s Matters protests that have turned this nation’s streets into a hotbed of unrest, the spotlight was on the African American community’s tradition of trauma and joy across continents and characters, ranging from present-day United States to West Africa of a millennium ago.

The offerings, with such titles as, DOMINION, which took place in 1997, ABIDE (1708), TWO THING BLUES (1910), MAGIC (1845), MOTHER OF INVENTION (1987), PERSIST (1952) and SOWN (1048), were somewhat interlinked tales, in a non-chronological order.

The stories introduced such topics as the slave trade, voter registration, generational differences, “holding strong to faith,” “Black bodies who belong to them,” “coon” theater, the intentional breaking up of the black family unit during slave times, the role of the black woman, and the encouragement for members of the African American community to “do something.”

The production used a creative stage device for keeping the actors a safe distance from each other.  For each scene, there was a panel on the screen with a photo of the setting and, as each actor entered into the environment, a panel showed that actor.  The device worked well, and the lack of real interaction between the performers became irrelevant.



Nicely textured performances by Cathleen Riddley and Champagne Hughes helped flesh out the multiple characters portrayed by each.  They were competently supported by Armando McClain and Caitlin Evenson.

For more information about the 24th Annual PlayGround Festival of New Works go to https://playground-sf.org/zoomfest-playbill/