(Courtesy of the University of Akron)
The University of Akron (UA) Theatre Arts Program, in association with New York City-based The New Black Fest, is presenting the regional premiere of Hands Up: 6 Playwrights, 6 Testaments, a collection of monologues written by emerging African-American male playwrights.
Produced in conjunction with the UA Black Male Summit, the staged readings of Hands Up are April 10 and 11, 7:30 p.m., at Sandefur Theatre in Guzzetta Hall, 157 University Ave., on the UA campus. Although the readings are free, donations will be collected on behalf of UA’s African American Male Learning Community.
Playwrights Nathan James, Nathan Yunberberg, Idris Goodwin, Glenn Gordon, Dennis Allen II and Eric Holmes were commissioned by The New Black Fest to compose monologues in response to the recent events in Ferguson, Missouri. The production seeks to provide a forum to deepen conversations about race relations in America, asking the audience to step outside of its comfort zone and recognize the experience of others.
The New Black Fest is made up of artists, activists and audience members who are dedicated to elevating and celebrating Black theater around the world. More information at www.thenewblackfest.org.
The University of Akron Black Male Summit was founded in 2008, and is an annual event that brings together African American male leaders in a variety of fields, from educators to policy makers, with the mission of improving and increasing retention and graduation of African American males in higher education. More information at www.uakron.edu/ie/bms2015/.
UA’s African American Male Learning Community is a campus organization that assists in the emotional and academic development of students by focusing on self-esteem, identity development, leadership, resiliency, and professional development. More information about www.uakron.edu/ie/programs/african-american-male-initiative.dot.