Every 28 Hours One-Minute Play Festival

Phase One Oct 20-24, St. Louis County

A Real Life Superhero

Bree Newsome became an Internet and media sensation when she did what many were longing to do but didn’t dare. She scaled a flagpole outside South Carolina's statehouse and brought the flag down, while police officers waited to arrest her below.

Every 28 Hours One-Minute Play Festival

Coming soon across the nation! Oct 20-24!

What is The Ferguson Moment?

We call on artists across the nation to share their responses to the oppression, violence, and resistance to racially motivated police brutality


Marcia Chatelain, an assistant professor in the Department of History, created the #FergusonSyllabus in response to recent events in Ferguson, Missouri.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Every 28 Hours: Creating a Performance for Ferguson

Ferguson’s Aftermath: Art and Unity in light of Mike Brown- Joe Wilson, Jr.

My time spent in Ferguson has been an unforgettable moment in my life. I have met some of the most generous and extraordinary people of diverse races, creeds, and socio-economic backgrounds. These individuals share a common belief that what happened on August 9, 2014, was an egregious travesty of justice, and an absence of common decency and humanity. An unarmed, African-American teenager was shot by a police officer. His dead, uncovered body was left in the middle of a street in his neighborhood as both young and old stared in disbelief. Michael Brown’s mother pleaded to make contact with her dead son. Yet, for four hours, she watched his body bleed onto the ground on a hot, summer day. After his body was finally removed, Mike Brown's blood was baked into the hot asphalt, making it impossible to wash away. The city had to literally remove the blood soaked pavement from the street! This place still and will forever exist as a memorial to this young man. Flowers and teddy bears rest within the narrow, empty sliver of concrete where this young man’s blood ran.

Some community members I met on this trip immediately assembled to bear witness to what was happening in Ferguson. Many of these folks were artists who came armed with art supplies. They administered council to community youth by providing them with sketch paper and markers, hoping to offer children with ways to cope with this traumatic scene. I heard about a very young child around the age of three who wrote the word “Justice,” but with the “J” spelled backwards. I thought: “out of the mouths of babes,” as the old folks would say. Here was a child who had been to funerals before his first school field trip.

Like Mike Brown’s blood on the hot asphalt, activist art making is “baking into” this political and social justice movement. Artists insert themselves as a critical component of this community’s response to the tragedy. In Ferguson, like so many communities of color, the choice to remain silent is a mode of self-preservation. Preserving the status quo was safer than unleashing their voices of discontent. But artists, civic leaders, concerned citizens, and like-minded police officers are on a quest to seek justice and fundamentally change the conversation from victim blaming to critical, communal self-evaluation. The Ferguson Movement demands accountability by those in power, while creating a space for people to find common ground.

The movement also demands an end to the years of silence that has maintained those in power and the status quo, while acknowledging that the community itself is responsible for creating a culture of silence. Local artists are providing a mechanism for everyone to speak because making art is a process that bears witness to our humanity. Through compassion and imagination, artists provide safe spaces for the purpose of building consensus. Creativity and empathy are slowly helping to create an environment that reflects of the dreams and desires of each and every individual in this region.

- See more at: http://howlround.com/every-28-hours-creating-a-performance-for-ferguson#sthash.AbsCHSgZ.dpuf

Friday, October 23, 2015

Ferguson Events Reverberate at One-Minute Play Festival

Ferguson Events Reverberate at One-Minute Play Festival By JOHN ELIGON NY Times

The “Every 28 Hours” project taps into the integral role that the arts — through songs, paintings, exhibits — have played in helping people to absorb, and protest, what happened in Ferguson — from the killing of Mr. Brown and the unrest that followed to the issues of racial inequality that it raised.

The idea to do a Ferguson-themed production emerged after Claudia Alick, associate producer of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, went to the city after the killing of Mr. Brown in August 2014. She did volunteer work with young people. She met with artists to ask what the community needed. They told her to bear witness to what was going on in Ferguson, she said.

So Ms. Alick created a blog, The Ferguson Moment, that became a bulletin board of sorts for artists to talk about work inspired by the events in Ferguson, where there were huge demonstrations and spasms of looting and vandalism. Then, she said, she thought to go to Mr. D’Andrea, who had approached her years earlier about collaborating.

“It’s a project that’s reflecting on history that’s being made now,” Ms. Alick said.

In the past, the festival drew on writers in a particular community, and they chose their topics; in Chicago, for instance, many focused on gentrification, Mr. D’Andrea said.

read more here

Thursday, October 22, 2015

1-Minute Play Festival Tackles Race, Police Brutality

The TakeAway with John Hockenberry PRODUCED BY: Kristen Meinzer
The show is a co-production of WNYC Radio and Public Radio International, in collaboration with The New York Times and WGBH Boston.

Playwrights from around the country are gathering in Ferguson, Missouri this week to create a series of one-minute plays about police violence and the African-American community. The theater project is called “Every 28 Hours,” which comes from a much talked about and much disputed estimate of police shooting statistics that says a black person is killed by a police bullet every 28 hours. "Every 28 Hours" is being co-produced by the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and New York’s One-Minute Play Festival, in cooperation from many of the nation's top theaters. The "28 Hours" festival, which begins this weekend in St. Louis, is co-produced by Claudia Alick, the associate producer of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. She discusses the project here. What you'll learn from this segment: How a one minute play can delve into something as serious as police brutality and misconduct. How the festival was designed and how the plays were chosen. What an audience member will see when they attend the festival. Listen to the interview Here


Tuesday, October 20, 2015

About Time: "Every 28 Hours" Unites National and Local Theater Artists to Examine Ferguson and #blacklivesmatter

"About Time: "Every 28 Hours" Unites National and Local Theater Artists to Examine Ferguson and #blacklivesmatter"  By Eileen G'Sell, St. Louis Magazine

In October 2014, thousands gathered in downtown St. Louis from around the country to march peacefully in the spirit of “Ferguson October,” one of many ongoing demonstrations responding to the death of Mike Brown, Eric Garner, and other unarmed casualties at the hands of the police. One year later, similar momentum has drawn playwrights, producers, and directors from coast to coast for a different kind of St. Louis demonstration: theatre as direct civic engagement.

Titled Every 28 Hours—referring to the contested statistic that an African American is killed every 28 hours by a member of the police—a host of the country’s most celebrated playhouses are joining forces with local talent in a week-long collaboration culminating in a day of performance Saturday, October 24. Chief among these players are the nationally recognized Oregon Shakespeare Festival (OSF) and New York’s One-Minute-Play Festival (#1MPF), the nation’s largest and longest running grassroots theater festival company. During their week-long residency, participants will tour important area sites and collaborate with St. Louis playwrights, directors, and actors, to create 60 to 90 “one-minute plays” inspired by the exigency and complexity of the #blacklivesmatter movement.

“What we’re hoping to do in St. Louis is to give the country a chance to talk to itself,” says OSF associate producer Claudia Alick. “Some of the collaborators are coming from a pure theater space, some from a very pure activist space, and many are coming from a cross-section of each. Our project is informed by thoughtful leaders in activism, performance, civic leadership, and communications. The work is hard and inspiring and necessary. I’m really glad that the project is going to be birthed in Ferguson.”

Saturday’s premiere in North County promises to be a capital-letter Big Deal for artists and activists alike. #1MPF founder Dominic D’Andrea describes the “plays” as 60 to 90 “heartbeats or pulses” building into a larger narrative and conversation within the local and national community. Those in residency will be scripting and choreographing based on their days directly engaging a comprehensive St. Louis population. “We meet on Wednesday, write on Thursday, rehearse on Friday, and open on Saturday,” D’Andrea explains.

University of Missouri-St. Louis theater professor Jacqueline Thompson, who has teamed up with Alick and D’Andrea to make Every 28 Hours happen, emphasizes the project’s magnitude for the region. “I can’t think of any project in the last five years where this many people came from all over the country to do work like this—it speaks to the dire needs of our time.”

read more here