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Fountain Theatre speaks out against racism with
live-streamed reading of ‘Citizen: An American Lyric’
LOS ANGELES (June 4, 2020) — In response to current events and in solidarity with #BlackLivesMatter, The Fountain Theatre will present a one-time, live online reading of Stephen Sachs’ critically acclaimed, award-winning stage adaptation of Claudia Rankine’s Citizen: An American Lyric. This compelling portrait of racism in America will stream live on Sunday, June 7 at 5 p.m. PT on Facebook, Twitter, the Fountain’s Youtube channel, and Zoom (zoom ID #959 8241 0639).
“The times have called us, once again,” says playwright Sachs, who is also the Fountain’s artistic director. “Citizen is a powerful, meaningful way for the Fountain to continue adding our voice to the national conversation.”
Citizen: An American Lyric is a stage adaptation of Rankine’s National Book Critics Circle award-winning book of poetry. In this intensely provocative and unapologetic rumination on racial aggression, seemingly everyday acts of racism are scrutinized as part of an uncompromising testimony of “living while Black” in America — from the shooting of Trayvon Martin, to the tennis career of Serena Williams to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
In his “Critic’s Choice” review of the Fountain production, Los Angeles Times theater critic Charles McNulty wrote, “Claudia Rankine’s powerful writings about the trauma of racism make for a staging and message that resonate,” while Stage Raw critic Myron Meisel called it “a transcendent theatrical experience.”
Citizen premiered at the Fountain Theatre in 2015, was remounted at L.A.’s Kirk Douglas Theatre as part of CTG Block Party in 2017, was chosen by the Music Center to represent Los Angeles theater at the 2018 Our L.A. Voices “Best of L.A.” arts festival, and has been produced at theaters across the country.
The online performance will be directed by Shirley Jo Finney, who was at the helm of all three L.A. productions. Original cast members Bernard K. Addison, Leith Burke, Tony Maggio, Monnae Michaell and Lisa Pescia will be joined by Adenrele Ojo. The webinar will be produced by James Bennett.
The live-streamed reading of Citizen: An American Lyric will take place on Sunday, June 7 at 5 p.m. PT. and can be viewed on Facebook, Twitter, the Fountain’s Youtube channel, and Zoom (zoom ID #959 8241 0639).
For more information, go to www.fountaintheatre.com.