The Black Swan Collective
This Month’s Feature: Shawn Harris
The Project: A Stage Play
I am sending out the January edition of The Black Swan Artist Collective a bit early because of the artist I am featuring this month. I have decided to support Shawn Harris as she works to stage her independent production Tulpa, or Anne&Me. This original play explores race in a grassroots theater setting in New York.
Unfortunately from my Madison location, I will not be able to attend a performance, but having not seen any indie theater featuring many people of color here, I still want to support it any way I can. I have enjoyed corresponding with Harris via social networks and commend her efforts in giving this play another run. However, she has only raised a fourth of the funds she needs to get this play moving again and is working on fundraising effort until January 12th.
With this work, Harris seeks to find new, more productive ways to discuss race issues without relying upon stereotypical representations or old archetypes that continue to plague people of color in all kinds of media. From its first run, she has gotten much critical acclaim and a very positive response from those fortunate enough to see the work onstage. She has posted some of these responses on http://afro-dyte.livejournal.com/35818.html to explain why she is continuing to work toward getting this work back in the theater.
Why I Am Supporting This Project:
I rarely get the chance to see live theater, even less to see quality theater with people of color portrayed as three-dimensional, complicated human beings. Even with my brief but always colorful correspondence with Harris, I can see that she will bring a refreshing if sometimes complicated voice to theater. So for the month of January, I would like to welcome Shawn Harris, aka RVCBard to the Black Swan Artist Collective.