Legacy Of Racism In The Water Explored Through One Local Private Swim Blog's Story
Ally Theater Company returns to Joe's Movement Emporium with daring new work, #poolparty.
A thought-provoking play about the history of swimming pools, the desegregation of a private swim club, and how the legacy of racism in the water continues to affect us all.
In 1974 a family was denied membership at a private, neighborhood swimming pool, all the members of which were white. Over 40 years later, that story has inspired a new play by local playwright Jennifer Mendenhall opening in the Meyer Performance Theater at Joe's Movement Emporium's June 23 - July 15, 2018. Tickets are $25 general admission and $15 for children, students and veterans. Tickets can be purchased online atwww.joesmovement.org.Joe's is located at 3309 Bunker Hill Road, Mt. Rainier, MD 20712.
In 2015, the board president of Playwright Jennifer Mendenhall's pool discovered documents that revealed the story of a family in 1974 which was denied membership to the then all-white pool. The father of that family had reached out to the NAACP who in turn contacted the Department of Justice. Eventually the pool offered the family a membership which the father declined fearing for his children's safety. The 2015 pool community acknowledged this part of their history by dedicating a newly build pavilion in the father's name and inviting the surviving family to share their experience at the ceremony. This launched Mendenhall's research into the history of swimming pools, the desegregation of that particular Mt. Rainier private swim club, and how the legacy of racism in the water continues to affect us all. Please click here for the full Playwright notes.
Please stay post-performance for specialty themed cocktails and opportunities to meet the cast of the show and creative and production team.
#poolparty is sponsored in part by Prince George's Arts & Humanities Council and produced in partnership with Black Kids Swim.
Ally Theatre Company produces theatre designed to engage audiences through acknowledging and confronting systemic oppression in America. The company aims to join the vital conversations, sparked by generations of thinkers, writers, performers, and activists by:
-Placing underrepresented populations at the front and center of our narratives and our organization;
-Forming alliances with individuals and organizations who share a similar mission;
-Producing new theatrical works making their world, national, or local premieres; and
-Tackling existing theatrical works that forward the conversation.