…sometimes what one says things they do not think and they hope that people are not offended but then sometimes one has to say that they are just saying what is brought up … for instance with Amina’s play… watching these rehearsals, I think about how awkward it would feel – or be watching Obama be elected – a black man as the president of the United States – and the be a Black person working as a housekeeper / hired help for someone white… these are the icky things in life that maybe we tip toe around, and I felt awkward posting that because I didn’t want anyone to read it and be offended but then I thought- NO, we are all intelligent people – and understand that the world changes and know that we are looking at things in a different way now, and Amina’s play makes us examine these things – or so I feel – but we’ll see how you feel on Monday!



About blackboardplays

Familiar with the collectives for poets and other Black writers that had been created over the years and slightly envious of that sense of community, I became curious about a similar place for playwrights. I wanted to see Black playwrights, actors and directors excited over each others work and supporting each other. I was longing for a “home” as a Black playwright and wanted to see other Black artists in that home, not to be exclusive, but because there was a void. I was also eager to find other Black playwrights who shared a passion for the craft of storytelling. The stories of the Black community are diverse and are often hidden behind the blockbuster stereotyped versions. The non-artistic Black community, not involved in the writing of these stories, is yearning to see themselves in our stories and it is apart of my life’s work to ensure that happens. the cell is any artists’ dream: a new space that supports you as you grow, committed to new work and the art. This allows the writer to focus on the craft - to focus on their story. Nancy Manocherian and Kira Simring welcomed this idea with open arms and instantly became apart of what we later called “Blackboard Reading Series”. Every reading will conclude a twenty minute talk-back with the audience. Dialogue with the community is essential to what we want to do with the series. As we grow, there may be more readings a month, play festivals and of course productions. We want to nurture and develop new black playwrights for this generation! Thank You! Garlia Cornelia Jones Founder, Blackboard Reading Series
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One Response to Worried

  1. Monday night did provide an evening of — yes, awkward self-reflection — on issues of race, identity & sexual politics usually skirted. Unfortunately the hype & hook did not meet the writing demands of such a twisty, thorny examination. This kind of bold outing (of subject matter) really puts the onus on the playwright’s craft. Primarily use of language and imagery in the service of character. For me, the lack of depth in this area was a huge let down. While part of me applauded the bold “hook” of the concept, when it came to execution (despite valiant actors) it fell very short. I look forward to seeing Amina Henry (who revealed herself to be both sharp & thoughtful in the talkback) dive headlong into the task of investigating this work at a much more rigorous level. I believe when she comes to terms with her character Justine’s “veracity” on the page it will open up a (to use the play’s final image) “hole” new aspect of the play…

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