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Three short plays, presented on the 100th anniversary of the Black Wall Street Massacre. A virtual presentation.
Theatre companies from Los Angeles and New York unite to create the Black Wall Street Festival. 2021 marks the centennial of the Black Wall Street Massacre, a two-day event that concluded on June 1, 1921. White mobs attacked the Greenwood District of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Greenwood, then the wealthiest Black community in the United States, was called Black Wall Street.
26 Blacks and 13 whites were killed, and 800 people were hospitalized with injuries. 35 square blocks were destroyed, and 10,000 Black people were left homeless.
Harlem’s 1st Annual Black Wall Street Festival is a commemoration to honor the legacies of Black Towns established throughout the North and South post-Reconstruction, communities of men and women seeking equality, justice, and economic independence. Many achieved great prosperity.
The Festival will be a virtual event comprised of three short plays.
The Robey Theatre Company will perform Double V, a short play by Levy Lee Simon (extracted from his full-length play The Magnificent Dunbar Hotel). It’s 1942, and Paul Robeson, Chester Himes, W.E.B. DuBois, and other members of the Black community convene at the famed Dunbar Hotel in Los Angeles to debate whether Blacks should join the U.S. Armed Services and fight in World War Two. Why should Blacks volunteer for combat after whites perpetrated the Black Wall Street Massacre?
The Robey Theatre Company Producing Artistic Director, Ben Guillory directs a cast that includes Garret Davis, Julio Hanson, Melvin Ishmael Johnson, Jason Mimms, Marlaina Owens, Joshua R. Lamont, Damon Rutledge, Jah Shams, Cydney Wayne Davis, Marcus Clark Oliver, and Crystal Nix.
Michael Green, Founder/Artistic Director of Shades of Truth Theatre, is the playwright and director of The Plan. It’s 1920, and various parts of the country are still reeling from the aftermath of the worst series of racial disturbances in recent times: The Red Summer of 1919. In contrast, things could not be better in Greenwood, Tulsa, Oklahoma. The thriving upwardly mobile Black community seems invulnerable to such violence. Zachary Fountain doesn’t think so, and he believes that an attack on Greenwood is inevitable and possibly imminent. He ponders the same question, over and over … What are we going to do!!!? The answer? We need a plan!
Michael Green also directs JuneBug’s Great Plane Ride by Joseph Lawrence Thompson. It’s the summer of 1992, and Los Angeles is on fire. In the wake of the acquittal of the law enforcement officers accused of nearly beating Rodney King to death, as witnessed by millions of TV viewers, the city erupts in chaos. For many, it is the worst day ever as images of people bleeding and buildings burning will forever be etched in their minds. For the aging and convalescing Sophia Toomey, it is a harbinger of things past. She was a child living in Greenwood on its worst day ever, June 1, 1921.
Executive Producer: Voza Rivers.
Presenter / Producer: The Robey Theatre Company, Shades of Truth Theatre, New Heritage Theatre Group, Queens Public Library
Theater > Drama
Event Phone: 213-489-7402
The Robey Theatre Company
514 S. Spring St.
Los Angeles CA 90013
LA - Central / Downtown
Performance Dates: 6/1/2021
1:00 p.m. PDT. 4:00 p.m. EDT.
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