Thursday, February 26, 2009

Jagun Fly

Jagun Fly, a new play by HSU graduate John ADEkoje begins tonight in the Gist Hall Theatre at 7:30, and plays Friday and Saturday, and again next weekend. Because I do publicity for HSU, all I could say about it in my Journal column this week is this: [it is] the winner of the tri-annual New Plays Season national competition at HSU, Jagun Fly by John Oluwole ADEkoje, an HSU playwriting graduate who is establishing a promising career in Boston. It's that Humboldt rarity: A play about Africa and America written by an African American, with an African American cast. (Standard disclaimer: I have professional and personal relationships to HSU theatre, so I will not review it here.)

But this is my own damn blog unaffiliated with anybody, so I'll add this. I haven't seen the play yet (I will Friday) nor a complete rehearsal, and I do know the production is dealing with a last minute emergency that's taken a key effects person away. But I have read the play and ADEkoje has got serious music in his dialogue. He's doing very well in Boston, connected to young black playwrights up and down the East Coast, and it's entirely possible that he will turn out to be an important playwright. In fact I think it's likely. So anybody who cares about the theatre and wants to have future bragging rights about seeing this early work, ought to get to Gist.

I also must say I am very disappointed in how the local press has covered this play, or failed to, for--if nothing else-- the newsworthiness I outlined in my column mention: this is a new play--selected as the best submitted for the New Plays Season--by an African American playwright, with an African American cast. Given what month it is, and given the events of this year so far nationally, it strikes me as utterly tone deaf not to have given this event prominent coverage. And nobody did.

Don't make the same mistake of thinking this is just another opening of another show. There's more information and photos at HSU Stage, which is a site I created and maintain for HSU Theatre, Film & Dance.


Anonymous said...

I'm so glad that you mentioned the fact that something so rare and so beautiful could be swept under the rug.....I wonder why?? and yet, the house still sold out and it was still a hit!!!!

Anonymous said...

i loved it!. it was blunt! out in the open and raw. and i completely stand behind when it comes to showing how America and it conforming materials poisons the nature of not just people but the African American culture along with other affected cultures.

however, there were a couple parts of the show i felt took away from the experience, like the side video and the puppeteers.

other than that it all was raw truth...