LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The University of Louisville African American Theatre Program is staging “Baltimore,” a play about the complexities of race on a college campus, July 26-28 before the show travels to the National Black Theatre Festival.
The African American Theatre Program produced “Baltimore” in February, but wanted to give Louisville one last chance to see it. The prestigious festival, in Winston Salem, N.C., receives hundreds of entrants from colleges and theater companies from around the world and selects only 40 or so to perform.
“It is an honor to be selected and an incredible opportunity for our students to see and be seen by top producers, playwrights, actors, casting agents and directors,” said Nefertiti Burton, theatre arts chair, who is directing the play.
This is the fourth time UofL’s African American Theatre Program has attended the festival. The unique program offers the only minor and graduate certificate in African American theatre in the country.
“Baltimore,” written by Kirsten Greenidge, tells the story of Shelby Wilson, an African-American resident adviser for a diverse group of freshmen. When a racist caricature is drawn on a black student’s dorm door, Wilson is forced to confront her belief that she lives in a post-racial society as she finds the courage to facilitate honest conversations about difference.
Performances are free, but donations are encouraged and will be used to help pay for travel and lodging for the 20 students attending the festival.
“I’m hopeful people understand this is an opportunity to support our students,” Burton said. “We’re representing UofL on a prominent, national stage. It is a great way to show our strength as a program and as a university.”
Performances are 8 p.m. July 26, 27 and 28 in Thrust Theatre, 2314 S. Floyd St.