June 18, 2015
Pay What You Can at the Door
Red Circle Sponsor: J. Crayton Pruitt Family Foundation
As a series, "Say! What?" will strive to bring plays and people together as a way to promote community and culture. The series will introduce little known plays and playwrights to a broader audience as well as give an opportunity to re-visit some well-known works. All plays will be presented with the anticipation that it will provoke discussions around the relevance, and resonance of the play to the community.
This month's featured play will be "Ceremonies In Dark Old Men" by Lonne Elder, III which premiered Off Broadway at St. Mark's Playhouse in a production by the Negro Ensemble Company in 1969 and was later adapted for television. The play centers around Mr. Russel B. Parker who owns a floundering barbershop on 126th Street in Harlem. According to the Oxford Companion to African American Literature, the play "is a dramatization of rituals—of survival, of friendship, of deception and manipulation, of self-deception, of black male friendship, of shifting intrafamilial allegiances, and of black manhood."