Tallahassee, FL. – The Florida A&M University (FAMU) Essential Theater’s first play of the year, Flyin’ West, will show from October 24 through October 28, at the Charles Winter Wood Theatre in Tucker Hall.
The play is written by Pearl Cleage, an Atlanta based playwright and directed by Valencia E. Matthews, assistant dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and director of theatre. Matthews previously produced the play during the Essential Theatre’s 1995-1996 season.
“If you are familiar with Pearl, you know she is passionate about promoting the education of African American life and that her writing often deals with issues of racism and sexism,” said Matthews. “In this play, she expresses the idea of freedom, not only for a race, but also for women. I think Cleage’s fiercely independent Sophie sums up the themes of the show best, as she states, “Two things I’m sure of. I don’t want no white folks tellin’ me what to do all day, and no man tellin’ me what to do all night.”
Set in 1898 Nicodemus, Kansas, Flyin’ West dramatizes the rich history of a group of strong-willed black homesteaders who left the segregated South for the Western prairies in hopes of a better life and the chance to have their own land. Aside from the racial injustices they face and the fear that white speculators would ruin their plans for an all-black community, they must rescue their youngest sister, Minnie, from her cruel and abusive husband, Frank.
Showtime for all shows from October 24 through October 26 is scheduled for 8 p.m., showtimes for October 27 will be 2 p.m. and
8 p.m. and showtime for October 28 will be 8 p.m. Admission for adults is $12, $9 for senior citizens, $7 for students or children and free for FAMU students with their Rattler Cards. For more information, call (850) 561-2425.
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