LA Writers Center and Howlround TV Present
The Breathe online play reading series
The LA Writers Center is proud to be a diverse organization. We have developed new work that has amplified BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ stories for almost two decades. But we can do better.
We think instead of speaking, it would be better to listen.
Instead of making promises, it would be best to take action.
With that in mind, LAWC is partnering with HowlRound to present “Breathe” an online play reading series
designed to advance these stories.
The first play in the Breathe Reading Series is Strange Fruit by Jon Bastian
A tale of the 20th century, Strange Fruit is a non-chronological and kaleidoscopic interweaving of multiple interconnected stories. Ultimately it is the story of Matthew Shepard as he finds his place in American history. When we open Matthew has been brought to the fence where he ultimately dies. While at the fence, he is experiencing the history of other key people who are part of the systemic story of bigotry in America. He meets historical figures such as James Baldwin, Oscar Wilde, Billie Holiday, Walter White, Anne and Abel Meeropol, Ethel and Julius Rosenberg and Mary and Hayes Turner. As he learns about their history, he is simultaneously learning the role HE plays in our country's history and he, in a way, is taking on the mantle. Crossing lines of gender, race, religion, and sexuality, “Strange Fruit” strives to remind us that, ultimately, our commonality is in being human, and the danger is in focusing upon our differences rather than our similarities. The play tells us that hope is a fleeting thing, and that the advances of one generation can never be taken for granted when removed so easily in the next.
If you missed the live online readings, just hit play below!
Director Che'Rae Adams Playwright Jon Bastian (click on photo below for more info) (click on photo below for more info)
Special thanks to our partners, Pro Bono ASL and HowlRound TV!