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  • Writer's picturemaramcghee

Sing Songs That Will Change Everything


It's a great feeling when you are able to participate in a show that changes and moves you. I am so lucky to have just closed Freedom High. This was the story of a girl named Jessica. This story was an historical fiction: it's based on real events, but this particular story didn't necessarily happen. However, some of the characters were real people; Bob Moses, Fannie Lou Hamer, Farmer Cy, Rita Schwerner. The 1964 Freedom Summer happened. Hundreds and hundreds of northern, white college students saved up their money, travelled to Ohio, learned how to protect themselves from hate and potential death; all to go down to a place with "an extraordinary amount of hate" to help the black folks of Mississippi register to vote. I loved researching this show. I was able to watch a few documentaries on Freedom Summer, 1964. I learned about the history of the KKK. I even learned to...understand...Southern thinking. It opened my eyes to new perspectives.

I learned about the ramifications of this movement--how people were beaten just for going down there; how parents who had basically disowned their children who volunteered to go help; how their lives were turned upside down due to PTSD. How people were unable to keep a family, hold down a job, move on....

Thank you to those who did.

I'm a jaded voter. I vote not because I believe it will count. I think our politics are dirty and rotted with money. I'm not a billionaire. My vote doesn't mean as much as the Koch brother's dollars. Even still, the candidates are never what I want, and even if they were--and they won--that doesn't mean that they will do what I voted them to do. I vote for the lesser of two evils.

I vote because so many people fought and died for my right. As a woman. As a black person. Maybe one day our voting system will be less corrupt. But when I went to that voting booth this past November, I thought of Andy Goodman, James Chaney, and Mickey Schwerner. **

It's been awhile since I've done a dramatic/serious play. I've done a ton of musicals. I've done a lot of improv. I've done a lot of comedy. Musicals and improv and comedy are great and fun! There is a tendency to think and feel as though M/I/C are more shallow than dramatic plays. Sometimes that can be true. Sometimes that is not true. (I often get such emotional and cathartic satisfaction from some of our darker, dramatic TIM rehearsals.) However, in my recent experiences, it has been more true that not. I needed this as a reinforcement of why I do what I do.

I also loved getting to know some people on a different level, working with old reliable friends, and discovering new (to me) and emerging talents. *April Paul*Andrew Muwonge*Ashley Jordan*T Stacy Hicks*Kelly Doherty*Marques Causey*Darrion Brown*Shayne Steliga*Gretchen Mahkorn* Uprooted is a great company. I've worked with them once before on a play that I also loved. So far, I'm 2 for 2 on excellent experiences with this company. Hopefully I won't disappoint and I won't be disappointed with our next project together Suddenly Last Summer.

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