The Nebraska Repertory Theatre and the Saint Louis Black Repertory Company continue to collaborate for real change at 6 p.m. Nov. 6 with “#realchange Baldwin and the American Theatre” happening online.
The event focuses on contributions to the American theatre by noted African-American playwright, novelist, essayist, poet and activist James Baldwin. Included is “A Conversation with Dick Cavett,” in which The Black Rep’s Ron Himes will talk with Dick Cavett about his historic 1969 interview with Baldwin, as well as discuss what he might ask Baldwin in 2020 about race in the current climate of the Black Lives Matter movement. The event is free and open to the public.
The evening also includes performance excerpts from Baldwin’s “Blues for Mister Charlie” and “The Amen Corner,” featuring The Black Rep’s Professional Acting Intern Company members Christian Kitchens, Theorri London, Brian McKinley, Jesmelia Williams and Christina Yancy. There will also be a panel, hosted by Himes, The Black Rep’s producing director, that includes panelists Michael Dinwiddie, associate professor of dramatic writing at New York University; Nkenge Friday, assistant vice chancellor for strategic initiatives at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln; Woodie King, Jr., founder and producing director of New Federal Theatre; and Jeffrey Q. McCune, Jr., associate professor of African and African American studies and women, gender, and sexuality studies at Washington University in St. Louis.
The Nebraska Rep and The Black Rep launched a two-year partnership with “The Continuum: Civil Rights to Black Lives Matter” on Oct. 2. This partnership aims to bring about positive social change at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln and beyond.
“This collaboration with The Nebraska Rep and the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film is consistent with our mission to heighten the social, cultural and educational awareness of our audiences,” Himes said. “Our company was cast in the spirit of the Black Arts Movement, and our work has always addressed issues of social justice and disenfranchisement of the BIPOC (Black, indigenous and people of color) communities in America, then and now.”
“It is particularly important for current UNL students to know about Baldwin’s writing, his activism and his profound influence on the way we think about race today,” said Christina Kirk, Nebraska Rep’s executive director. “Baldwin’s life work is especially relevant to the current Black Lives Matter movement.”