A night of theater, dance, spoken word and visual art responding to the movement in 2016
January 27, 2016
CONTACT: JEFF GILLILAND
Student Response to #BlackLivesMatter Movement Takes Stage at Anacostia Playhouse in Silence Is Violence: Who’s Next?
Young Playwrights’ Theater to Feature Work of Young Artist Fellow Dominique Butler
Washington, DC – One year after the highly successful Silence Is Violence: A #BlackLivesMatter Event, DC-based arts educator Young Playwrights’ Theater (YPT) is providing further space for artistic response to the #BlackLivesMatter movement at Silence Is Violence: Who’s Next?. On Monday, February 29, at 7pm, student and professional artists will gather at the Anacostia Playhouse (2020 Shannon Pl. SE, Washington, DC 20020) for a night of theater, dance, spoken word and visual art responding to the movement in 2016.
Silence Is Violence: Who’s Next? will center around the work of Dominique Butler, a Cardozo High School junior who is YPT’s inaugural Young Artist Fellow. Dominique wrote his first play, Like Father, Like Son, in YPT’s In-School Playwriting Program in 2014, and was featured in YPT’s 2015 New Play Festival. He began work on a follow-up play, Who’s Next?, at the Curious New Voices National Collective in Denver, and has continued to develop it through YPT’s Young Artist Fellowship, a year-long mentorship program designed to help promising young playwrights further their craft and cultivate valuable skills for college and the workforce. Who’s Next? follows Trayvon Martin, Freddie Gray and Dominique’s own friend Davon—who was shot and killed by DC police—through a dangerous confrontation with a police officer.
“Dominique's writing captures the dynamic voices of young men of color, often marginalized in our society,” says YPT Creative Programs Director Thembi Duncan. “He crafts emotionally poignant narratives that question the status quo and challenge audiences to examine their assumptions about race, privilege and abuse of authority.”
Falling on the last day of Black History Month, Silence Is Violence: Who’s Next? will weave the voices of DC’s young people together with those of adult artists and community members to create a tapestry of self-expression unique to Southeast DC. “It is critical to Dominique that his work is seen and heard in his community of Anacostia, as he feels that many of his peers ‘have a lot to say, but don't bother because they don't think anybody will listen,’” Duncan continues. “He believes that if other young people in his community bear witness to his voice in action, they will be inspired to share stories of their own.”
Silence Is Violence: Who’s Next? is free and open to the public. Recommended for ages 13 and up for adult language and content. Tickets can be reserved in advance on Eventbrite. For more information, visit yptdc.org/Events/SilenceIsViolence or silenceisviolencedc.tumblr.com.
Young Playwrights’ Theater inspires young people to realize the power of their own voices. By teaching students to express themselves through the art of playwriting, YPT develops students’ language skills, and empowers them with the creativity, confidence and critical thinking skills they need to succeed in school and beyond. YPT honors its students by involving them in a high-quality artistic process where they feel simultaneously respected and challenged and by engaging professional theater artists in producing student plays for the community. More information can be found at www.yptdc.org.
Members of the media who would like to attend and/or feature Silence Is Violence: Who’s Next? should contact Jeff Gilliland, Communications Associate, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (202) 387-9173.
Follow YPT (@YPTDC) on social media for updates.
Silence Is Violence: Who’s Next? is presented by Young Playwrights’ Theater:
2437 15th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20011