“Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player, that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more; it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.” – William Shakespeare
The articles The Ground on Which I Stand by August Wilson and Steps toward the Negro Theatre by Alain Locke were both phenomenal read. Wilson and Locke discussed the design of black theatre and how it needs to be and can be structured for the future. They also discussed the
The 19th century was a time period full of disagreements and wishful thinking. During this time, African Americans were trying to become free from slavery. This led to a Civil War. The 1800’s were a hard time for African Americans, after the Civil War many expressed their thoughts and feelings through plays like Minstrel Shows and other forms of theatre.
The article is about black creative production (theater) since the play is directed by African American playwright Richard Wesley. In addition, the predominantly black casts are spectacular and deliver a strong performance. The ability to be multi-skilled in your craft displays creativity and versatility where the actors can utilize their many talents.
Robert Townsend, writer, producer, director, and actor, was born in Chicago, Illinois on February 6, 1957, the second oldest of four children to Shirley and Robert Townsend. Growing up on the Westside of Chicago, Townsend was raised by his mother in a single parent home. As a child Townsend watched TV where he learned to do impersonations of his favorite actors such as Jimmy Stewart and Bill Cosby for his family and classmates. Eventually his abilities caught the attention of Chicago’s Experimental Black Actors Guild X-Bag Theatre in Chicago and then moved him out to The Improvisation, a premiere comedy club in New York City. Townsend also had a brief uncredited role in the 1975 movie, Cooley
The United States has long been a country that has accepted that change is a necessity for prosperity and growth. However, each change within the nation's history was hard fought against those who resisted such change either through racism, bigotry, and blatant discrimination. African American cinema is enshrouded in history that depicts these themes of racism, struggle, and deprivation. Yet, this same cinema also shows scenes of hope, artistic spirit, intellectual greatness, and joy. Black actresses, actors, directors, producers, and writers have been fighting for recognition and respect since the great Paul Robeson. The civil rights movement of the 1950's and 60's was fueled by black cinema through films like A Raisin in the Sun.
The Union enjoyed overall success in the Western Theater in 1862, but the year also brought defeat and setbacks between the times of Grant’s River War and the Battle at Stones River during the Civil War. These events contradicted the Unions success with strategic embarrassments that demonstrated the Union’s youth
June 1st, 1921 will forever be remembered as a day of great loss and devastation. It was on this day that America experienced the deadliest race riot in the small town of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Ninety-four years later, that neighborhood is still recognized as one of the most prosperous African American neighborhoods to date. With hundreds of successful black-owned businesses lining Greenwood Avenue, it became a standard that African Americans are still trying to rebuild. The attack that took place in 1921 tore the community apart, claiming hundreds of lives and sending the once prosperous neighborhood up in smoke.
This year, to celebrate Black History Month, we pay tribute to the contributions made by African-Americans in Musical Theater. The medium of musical performance theater has always been a vibrant and unique entity enriched by ancient West African folklore, and European theatrical practices. A continuum of the African folk traditions of storytelling that uses music, song, and dance to help us understand our difference, as well as celebrate the sameness of who we are as people.
It was one of the most important cultural institutions in Harlem. The relationships that formed over time in and around the Apollo strengthened the community as a whole. The Apollo’s lush history became an economic and cultural anchor for Harlem. The Apollo became the principle employer of African American theatrical workers in their community. One of a few main theaters to hire blacks for backstage and performance positions. The Apollo helped blacks come of age socially, professionally, emotionally and politically. The community in Harlem exerted common values and understanding in how they faced discrimination and prejudices. They rose above the hate and became stronger as an organization and community.
Over the course of approximately one-hundred years there has been a discernible metamorphosis within the realm of African-American cinema. African-Americans have overcome the heavy weight of oppression in forms such as of politics, citizenship and most importantly equal human rights. One of the most evident forms that were withheld from African-Americans came in the structure of the performing arts; specifically film. The common population did not allow blacks to drink from the same water fountain let alone share the same television waves or stage. But over time the strength of the expectant black actors and actresses overwhelmed the majority force to stop blacks from appearing on film. For the longest time the performing arts were
Players in Los Angeles the most. The theater has introduced to the world over one hundred interesting plays and musicals that talk about the Asian American stories. From the early days of development, Asian American actors were very interested in playing roles of well-known characters in the history such as Shakespeare in traditional way, but Asian American writers couldn’t create a suitable program that worked best for actors in expressing the truly Asian American culture until the 1970s. As the result, nowadays plays and musicals produced by East West Players Company are all written in an Asian sense. The one thing that I like about the theater is that they work not only in favor of any specific Asian culture, not only about Chinese, Vietnamese
By the Way, Meet Vera Stark, a play written by Lynn Nottage, delves into the complexities of the African American struggle while trying to gain equality the arts. As with all other facets of American culture blacks also had to fight not only to be a part of the
The first one, the play that is marked as the very first African American play produced was The Drama of King Shotaway (Penumbra). This played to mixed audiences for a year in The African Grove Theater in New York (Penumbra). This was the first theater, founded by William Henry Brown and James Hewlett, to take African American perspective plays and produce them onstage (Penumbra).
Final Essay Over 400 hundred years there has been slavery, racism, and discrimination in America with blacks, and other minorities. A famous man once said “I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality... I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word” – Martin Luther King Jr (brain quote). The movies ‘Miracle at St. Anna’ directed by Spike Lee, and ’12 Years a Slave’ directed by Steve McQueen both show the struggle African Americans went through during a tough racial period in American history. Even today in Modern society African Americans still deal with racism. Spike