Brooklyn Readings Spotlight African-American Women Playwrights

Performers stage “Sleep Over Stories” on Feb. 28, the first in the “Second Century” spring reading series organized by New Brooklyn Theatre. (Photo by David Willems via Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

Performers stage “Sleep Over Stories” on Feb. 28, the first in the “Second Century” spring reading series organized by New Brooklyn Theatre. (Photo by David Willems via Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

A spring reading series from New Brooklyn Theatre features the works of five up-and-coming African-American women playwrights. Christina Anderson’s “Man in Love” will be performed March 13 at the Akwaaba Mansion in Bedford-Stuyvesant, the second reading of the series, entitled “The Second Century,” reports Mary Frost for Brooklyn Daily Eagle.

The play takes place in a bleak, Depression-era city, where a disparate group of characters—including a white transwoman, a once-popular black nightclub singer and a student with a secret — manage to find love and a good time. But when a series of black female bodies turn up, fear causes the characters to search for protection from potentially dangerous individuals.

The Second Century marks the centennial of Angelina Weld Grimké’s “Rachel,” the first play staged by an African-American female playwright. The New Brooklyn Theatre presented the work in August 2015. Frost notes the play’s “eerie presentiment of the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement.”

Go to Brooklyn Daily Eagle to read about “Sleep Over Stories” by Wi-Moto Nyoka which opened the series on Feb. 28. The short plays “explore second-class citizenship set in alternate realities involving werewolves, aliens, ghosts, and zombies.”

The Second Century series runs through June 2016 at the Akwaaba Mansion.

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