The “Every 28 Hours” Plays are inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, with participation by playwrights and theaters nationwide. Founded by One-Minute Play Festival Artistic Director, Dominic D’Andrea and Oregon Shakespeare Festival Producer, Claudia Alick, this national partnership focuses on the widely shared statistic that every 28 hours in America, a black person falls target to systemic violence and is killed by the police, vigilante, or security guard.
These plays about a historic time are written by playwrights across the nation including Keith Josef Adkins, Migdalia Cruz, Kristoffer Diaz, Colman Domingo, Idris Goodwin, Kirsten Greenidge, David Henry Hwang, Neil LaBute, Jacqueline E. Lawton, Lisa Loomer, Tarell Alvin MacCraney, Dominique Morisseau, Stew and Lynn Nottage, Jerome A. Parker, Aaron Posner, Robert Schenkkan, Universes, Anu Yadav among others.
“Every 28 Hours” features 71 one-minute plays, nine of which were written by St. Louis playwrights including Nancy Bell, Marty Casey, Basmin Red Deer, Matthew Kerns, Joan Lipkin, Stephen Peirick, Mariah Richardson, Rick Trumble, and Kelley Weber.
In 2015, the plays were developed in a week-long residency with participation from 22 theatre artists from across the U.S. and a St. Louis cohort which included community members, artists, and activists. The plays debuted October 24, 2015, in Ferguson and St. Louis. The work is being shared across the United States throughout culminating in a national action in October 2016 in which at least 60 theaters and universities are participating.
In St. Louis, the participating groups include The Black Rep, Mustard Seed Theatre, The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Shakespeare Festival St. Louis, Show Me Arts Academy, Slightly Askew Theatre Ensemble, and That Uppity Theatre Company, local student groups, and others. The producing team in St Louis includes Adam Flores, Joan Lipkin, Jacqueline Thompson, and Carl Overly.
“‘Every 28 Hours’ is an invitation to a different kind of witnessing of many different perspectives in the wake of what some have called ‘The Ferguson Moment,’ following the death of Mike Brown. This collection of short plays unfolds like a kaleidoscope, building upon each other. I am touched by the efforts of many different local groups to add these events to their busy fall schedules so we can be part of both a local and national conversation. Significantly, the voices of nine different St. Louis writers are in the collection,” said Joan Lipkin, Producing Artistic Director of That Uppity Theatre Company, who serves on the national board and heads the collegiate initiative around engagement.
People in the St. Louis area have two opportunities to see the show. Center of Creative Arts (COCA, 524 Trinity Ave, St. Louis, MO 63130) will be hosting a performance on Saturday, October 15th at 8pm and The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis (130 Edgar Rd, Webster Groves, MO 63119) will be hosting a performance on Monday, October 24th at 8pm. All performances will be free of charge.
“The Rep feels very privileged to be participating in this exciting and important project. Working together as a community of theatre artists, perhaps we can do some small part to help our hometown laugh, cry, and heal through the power of our art form,” said Seth Gordon, Associate Artistic Director of the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis.
“The theatre community of St. Louis is a representation of the St. Louis community at large. We must come together and embrace our uniqueness in order to work towards a bigger, more diverse, more vibrant, more equitable, more beautiful future. The ‘Every 28 Hours’ Plays are a fantastic opportunity to do just that.” said Adam Flores, assistant professor of theatre at Fontbonne University.
“Every 28 Hours” reflects a crucial time in civil rights and a landmark in our country’s history. The evening will include short performances by Marty C. Casey’s “Spreading the Love Tour” by students from the Show Me Arts Academy on Saturday, October 15th and dance by Ashley Tate as well as the Washington University Dance Collective under the direction of Cecil Slaughter on October 24th. A variety of post show engagement will also be available including discussion, feedback boards, and video. V
Via Press Release