See ASF performance of ‘Crowns’

Published 12:00 am Monday, November 6, 2006

To the Editor:

In my opinion, if you are an African American and you are a woman and you are trying to get in touch with your heritage, you need to go to the Alabama Shakespeare Festival’s performance of “Crowns.”

This play traces the roots of the African American woman and her fascination with her hats from the African Crown to the American hat. From slavery to the Civil Rights Movement and beyond.

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To the educated black women who are a sophisticated to the working woman, the hats and the garments that the women wear on stage are bright and colorful.

The play is centered in the church and how the ladies of the church wear hats. Stories about the hats are told and hat etiquette is discussed. Each hat represents different moods of the women at the time in her life.

“Crowns” is a musical full of life, humor, drama, sadness and song of the African American lifestyle. Mothers share stories of life with their daughters, grandmothers share stories of their hats and their life with their granddaughters. This is a family play and the theme of the play is family-centered on the church and how faith plays a role in the black folks’ life in surviving life’s obstacles.

The play is from a woman’s point of view. But men and the

young and old will enjoy it as well. And if you are white, you will be entertained as well as becoming educated to just how spiritual black folks are and learn more about black culture.

This play breaks down all the barriers that separates the white and black ethnic groups.

Songs include “An’t that Good News,” “If I Could Touch the Hem of his Garment,” “His Eye Is on the Sparrow,” “Just a Closer Walk With Thee” and a whole lot more.

The play was written by Dallas native Regina Taylor. She was one of the most successful black women playwrights in America.

She is best known for playing a role as the housekeeper Lilly in the TV series, “I’ll Fly Away.” She has won Golden Globe awards and was nominated for two Emmy’s. She was the first black woman to star as Juliet in the Shakespeare play, “Romeo and Juliet” in a nontraditional cast. She also starred in the movie, “Lean on Me.”

I personally feel that all black women should see this play to be inspired to overcome obstacles in life and achieve your goals and not let barriers prevent you from accomplishing your goals and dreams. Become educated on your past and see just how far you can go if you work hard and become educated. This play will inspire, empower and motivate you.

ASF will run “Crowns” through Nov. 12

William Bowman