Photo Flash: FETCH CLAY, MAKE MAN at The Ensemble Theatre, Playing Through 2/25
The Ensemble Theatre closes its run of FETCH CLAY, MAKE MAN this weekend. The final performance of for the play, written by Will Power and directed by Mirron Willis, is at 3 p.m. on Sunday, February 25, 2018. The remaining performances are on Thursday at 7:30 p.m; Friday at 8 p.m; Saturday at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m; and Sunday at 3 p.m.
Historical icons - Muhammad Ali & Stepin' Fetchit explore friendship at the heart of race relations in 1960s America. The play is set on the eve of the Cassius Clay and Sonny Liston rematch, and based on the friendship between the actor Stepin Fetchit and Cassius Clay soon to become Muhammad Ali.
"One might wonder what these two men could have had in common to build their seemingly unlikely friendship," says Power. "Both were iconic, yet each man has literally or figuratively swung his own combination punches to survive in his era."
FETCH CLAY, MAKE MAN explores how each man handled a life in the public eye as black men in their respective eras Hollywood in the '20s, where a black actor's career depended on playing caricatures, and the middle of '60s, after the assassination of Malcolm X.
FETCH CLAY, MAKE MAN tells its story with "incisive characterizations, crackling dialogue and generous doses of dark humor," says the "Hollywood Reporter."
Remaining performance days and times are Thursday at 7:30 p.m; Friday at 8 p.m; Saturday at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m; and Sunday at 3 p.m. For information call 713-520-0055 or visit EnsembleHouston.com. $23 - $50
About the playwright
Will Power is an award-winning playwright and performer. Plays include "Stagger Lee" (Dallas Theater Center), "Fetch Clay, Make Man"(New York Theater Workshop, Marin Theatre Company, Roundhouse Theatre, True Colors Theater), "Steel Hammer" with Siti Company (Humana Festival, Brooklyn Academy Of Music), "The Seven" (Lucille Lortel Award Best Musical, New York Theater Workshop, La Jolla Playhouse, Ten Thousand Things Theater Company), Five Fingers of Funk! (Children's Theatre Company), Honey Bo and The Goldmine (La Jolla Playhouse) and two internationally acclaimed solo shows "The Gathering," and "Flow." Power's numerous awards include a Doris Duke Artist Award, a United States Artist Prudential Fellowship, the TCG Peter Zeisler Memorial Award, a Jury Award for Best Theatre Performance at the HBO US Comedy Arts Festival, and the Trailblazer Award from The National Black Theater Network. Power's numerous film and television appearances include The Steven Colbert Report (Comedy Central), and Bill Moyers on Faith and Reason (PBS).
Mr. Power spent his early years as a key member in two critically acclaimed avant-garde music groups, Midnight Voices and the Omar Sosa Sextet. With these groups Power recorded and toured extensively. More recently, Mr. Power has traveled on multiple occasions to teach theatre across the globe. He has held a number of artist fellowships and guest teaching positions at institutions such as CCNY, Princeton University, and the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Will Power was a guest of the U.S. State Department on five separate occasions, traveling to South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Turkmenistan, and Kyrgyzstan. On these trips and others, Mr. Power taught community workshops in shantytowns, worked with poets in former regimes of the Soviet Union, and lectured at various libraries, grammar schools, and colleges. Power is currently on the faculty at The Meadows School of the Arts/SMU, and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Playwright in Residence with the Dallas Theatre Center.
The Ensemble Theatre's 2017-2018 Season is sponsored in part by grants from the City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Arts. United Airlines is the official airline sponsor for The Ensemble Theatre. Fetch Clay, Make Man is generously sponsored by Chevron.
About The Ensemble Theatre
The Ensemble Theatre was founded in 1976 by the late George Hawkins to preserve African American artistic expression and enlighten, entertain and enrich a diverse community. In addition to being the oldest and largest professional African American theatre in the Southwest, it also holds the distinction of being one of the nation's largest African American theatres that owns and operates its facility with an in-house production team.
The Ensemble Theatre produces a main stage season of six contemporary and classic works devoted to the portrayal of the African American experience by local and national playwrights and artists. The theatre's Performing Arts Education program provides educational workshops, Artist-in-Residence experiences and live performances for students both off-site and at the theatre; and the Young Performers Program offers intensive summer training for children ages 6 to 17 encompassing instruction in all disciplines of the theatre arts.
Photo credit: David Bray
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