(Note from Editor: the following press release was written by City Neighbors High School student playwright, Constance Green in her role as Assistant Producer of Black Blues.)
Baltimore City, Maryland-April 10th and 11th, 2014- City Neighbors High School launches their drama department by performing the award winning play, “Black Blues”.
Already integrated through the arts, City Neighbors High School has stepped away from the tradition of performing well known plays and has taken a different route. This year the school will be performing a play by one of their very own students. “Black Blues,” written by senior Constance Green. The play was first presented at Center Stage as a winner of the Young Playwrights Festival in 2013.
City Neighbors is pleased to partner with Baltimore TheatreWorks on this production. Baltimore TheatreWorks was founded by actor-comedian Rain Pryor in 2012 with the mission to increase theatre performance opportunities for students in grades 6-12. Co-founder Joan Weber is acting as producer, working with all aspects of the production in partnership with Constance Green, who is also acting as Assistant Producer, and Jamani Epps, the Assistant Production Manager. Still Pointe Theatre Initiative Co-Founder, Amanda Rife, is directing and choreographing. Heather Mork is working with design and tech students as a technical advisor.
The City Neighbors High School Drama Club is a hands on learning project in which students work with professional theatre artists in all aspects of producing a play. Students are on stage, back stage, designing and in the office. Committees of students are working on public relations and marketing, fundraising, design and construction in order to apply the skills they’ve learned in class in an organizational setting.
The school is looking forward to the partnership with Baltimore TheatreWorks. Mrs. Bobbi McDonald, founder of city Neighbors stated, “This partnership is an example of what we were hoping for at City Neighbors High School. I can’t wait to see the show!” City Neighbors High School is a public charter school in its fourth year of operation with 386 students from 9th through 12th grades. CNHS is a progressive school, located in Northeast Baltimore with an integrated community. The school was designed to answer the question, “What would it take for every student to be known, loved, and inspired academically?” The principal, Mr. Dolly states, “Endorsed by Rain Pryor, I am excited to see the first theater performance put on by our students. I am proud of them and look forward to watching the play come to life!”
Rain Pryor founded Baltimore TheatreWorks to help schools build theatre programs in their school. She worked with the students in the fall to build ensemble, find their voices and make decisions about what they wanted to produce as a company.
“The voice of the student is key to building a sustainable theatre program for our students and community,” Pryor states, “When we empower our young people to be creative, we empower them to be great thinkers and builders of society. Black Blues is that work, that voice we need to hear from such a young playwright as Constance Green.”
DeShaune Carter……….. Tommy
Nyshai Charles ……….. Sam
Louis Dixon ……….. James
Kayleigh Fore ……….. Sherry
Nia Jean-Baptiste ……….. Mae Belle
LeVar Lewis ……….. Charlie
Destiny Watkins ……….. Mercy
Tanajia Whittington-Mackall ……….. Shirley
Amanda Rife Director
Joan Weber Producer
Sherry Wheatley Stage Manager
Jamani Epps Asst. Production Manager
Constance Green Playwright/Asst. Producer
Eva Hellerbach Asst. Choreographer