Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Check Out What's Happening This week In Brooklyn, NY

Color Between the Lines
Presented by Brooklyn Historical Society, Irondale Ensemble Project & Weeksville Heritage Center

Final Performances

Tues May 22 7pm $10
Wed May 23  & Thur May 24 8pm $35 General Admission; $20 Student Rush

For tickets: Visit www.irondale.org, call 866.811.4111 or
Irondale Center Box Office | 85 South Oxford Street | Brooklyn, NY
30 minutes before the performance

Color Between the Lines is a new play about the antislavery/abolitionist movement in Brooklyn. The play is part of In Pursuit of Freedom, a public history project, which is a collaboration between Brooklyn Historical Society, Irondale Ensemble Project & Weeksville Heritage Center.

Meet Victoria L. Ward. She is part of the Irondale Ensemble Project. Here are some details about her participation in the project in her own words:

Victoria L. Ward in Color Between the Lines

This project literally came out of no where for me. Jim [Neisen, director, Color Between the Lines] emailed me on a Saturday saying that an actress in the show needed to leave because of complications with her pregnancy, and he needed a replacement ASAP. He gave me a brief description of what the show was about, but all I needed to read was "a show about Brooklyn's involvement with the abolition of slavery"...I read that and knew it was the show for me. I love black history and the chance to be in such a monumental production, was something that I couldn't pass up. I called him as soon as I was done with the email and I said, "I'll be there Monday morning". This is my second "new work" but first show where there is no "playwright". I've never been in a production where the cast creates the peice from the ground up. It took me a few days to wrap my head around the process, but once I released my expectations of "how a production SHOULD be put together" the process became freeing. I would come home and tell my husband, "I can't believe they're paying me to play." Thats what it was: play. We would read the history as a group, disect it, digest it, then put the books down and play!  However I was feeling on the day of rehearsal I could come in and use it, and the group always said YES, everyone was open to any idea. No one ever shot anything down.  It was try it and then after we'll see if we like it or not, and does it serve the purpose of the peice? The Irondale ensemble is different than any place I've ever worked before because the ensemble alows themselves to play. Just be who you are in your true self and the create work will flow out of you like a fountain. That's what I've learned here, and that's what I'll take with me. Jim would always say to me, "We don't know what it is yet, but we'll find it." That is how art should be created, don't think, just go...be...live. From that comes magic, through that we were able to find the voice of these people. I specifically say people because they were not characters in a story book or script. These were real live human beings striving for a better tomorrow. And it was our duty to bring them back to life via the history that we read. This experience will stay with me for the rest of my career. This process reminded me why I became an actress in the first place. I was put on this earth to tell the story of those who cannot tell it themselves. This production is necessary to today, to this community and I am honored to be the voice of these poineers."

Make sure that you catch Victoria and the rest of the Irondale Ensemble in this seminal work that gives voice to our fore mothers and fathers.

--Marcia Pendelton

One more thing! Check out DANCEAFRICA at BAM. Programming is now underway with the huge vendors market slated to begin on Friday, May 25th. Vendors from all over the globe will gather in the People's Republic of Brooklyn to sell their wares. Dance, music, food, film, fashion and DANCE will be in full effect this Memorial Day Weekend. Baba Chuck Davis has an amazing festival in store for us all! For more information about DanceAfrica at BAM  visit 30 Lafayette Avenue, call 718.636.4100. or visit www.bam.org/danceafrica.

By the way -- I attended an amazing concert on Sunday, May 20th at the BAM Opera House that featured some of the original companies and dancers who participated in the very first DanceAfrica in 1977. My favorite? Arthur Hall's African American Dance Ensemble? Why? Because they are from Philadelphia, PA and so am I! Arthur Hall really changed the arts and culture landscape in Philly. I am grateful for his infusion of a bold and unapologetic celebration of the African Diaspora.


  1. Hope you can see this production by Karimah!

    Ticket Reservations

  2. Livin’
    Set in urban Detroit, 'Livin' takes a hilarious look at the 'questionable' good fortune that deposits itself on the Sellers' family doorstep. Eugene Jr. a recent college graduate has returned home with high expectations. He takes a job as a janitor at the local bank just to hold him over until he is able to get his own business off the ground.
    The bank is robbed and the robbers inadvertently drop some of the stolen money in his bucket. His attempts to return the money are dismissed in the chaos--now he is faced with a difficult decision. Does he tell his family-who are deeply religious--about the money? Does he keep it a secret? Or What?
    The family comically tosses their views of right and wrong between the generations. As a family, they have to decide what to do! The heartwarming and funny events that follow make an evening of theatre suitable for your entire family.
    Performance Dates
    June 13 & 14th – Previews @ 8pm
    Opening Night – Friday June 15th – 8pm
    Saturday June 16th – 8pm
    Sunday June 17th – 3pm
    Wed – Saturday - June20-June 23 – 8pm
    Sunday, June 24th – 3pm

    Ticket Prices $18 full price

    Ticket Reservations

    Playroom Theatre
    151 W. 46th Street (bet Bway and 6th Ave.)
    New York, NY