PC: Accra Shepp,The Covid Journals: Justice Sunday August 8, 2020. Rally marking 150th day without an arrest in the murder of Breonna Taylor at Times Square.
Free admission (all visitors, all hours)
The Civilians presents “Showing Up,” a free livestreamed evening of music and performance inspired by photographer Accra Shepp’s portraits of Black Lives Matter activists. In the spring of 2020, Shepp began taking portraits of first responders at work on the frontlines of the pandemic. Shared on Instagram these images became the first chapter “Contagion” of his Covid Journals, which also include a second chapter “Hunger,” and then, as historic activism filled the streets of New York following the murder of George Floyd, a third, ongoing chapter, “Justice.” The Civilians, a company known for its innovative approach to documentary theater, interviewed some of the activists depicted in Shepp’s “Justice” chapter, each photographed at various Black Lives Matter gatherings in NYC. Showing Up, directed by Colette Robert and premiering on April 16 at 7:30pm, draws on these interviews to create performances by actors and original songs by artists including Rashaan Carter, Jacinth Greywoode & Rebecca Hart; Jaime Lozano; and Katie Madison & Jarrett Murray. A conversation with Accra Shepp frames the evening. To register for this free event, please visit www.thecivilians.org.
Showing Up is co-presented with the International Center for Photography, and Alice Austen House, and with the collaboration of the Alfred Stieglitz Society at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
The creative team of Showing Up includes video director Sadah Espii Proctor, stage manager Fran Acuña-Almiron, dramaturg Phoebe Corde, associate dramaturg James La Bella, associate producer Sarah Boess, and interviews were conducted by Jesse Baxter, Marsha Stephanie Blake, Bailey Jordan Garcia, Dee Harper, Matt Maher, and Riley Tollen.
“I was introduced to Shepp’s Covid Journals this past Fall and was moved by his striking ability to connect with each subject,” says The Civilians’ Artistic Director Steve Cosson. “In Shepp’s photos, I saw an individual assert their presence on his or her own terms, giving a human-scale dimension to these larger, collective events. I’m delighted that Shepp agreed to work with us on this project, offering an opportunity for the voice of the individuals in these photos to ‘show up’ through their conversations with our company of interviewers, and the interpretation of their words by actors and musicians.”
Showing Up is part of The Civilians annual cabaret series featuring new works made from creative investigations into real life; the series is supported by The Axe-Houghton Foundation.
For more information about Black Lives Matter please visit https://blacklivesmatter.com/