The four plays by Idris Goodwin, together titled “Plays Towards an Antiracist Tomorrow,” mark your first production as CATCO’s artistic director. Why these plays?
“When I first came to CATCO, one of the first things people told me about was the King Arts Complex’ HeART of Protest initiative. As I was thinking about how CATCO could contribute, I came across Idris Goodwin’s open source scripts towards an antiracist tomorrow.
As a theatre company deeply invested in work that speaks to young people as well as adults, it feels right that our contribution to the HeART of Protest 46 days of Art be work that intentionally speaks to a multi-generational audience. I’ve always believed that shared theatre experiences can be powerful tools for dialogue and I’m looking forward to the conversations – between parents and children, between friends, and in our community – that come from these productions.”
Why is it important to talk to kids about race?
“I believe it’s never too early to talk to kids about race. Race is a factor in all of our lives and research shows that by age two and half, children can start developing and observing racial biases in the world around them. Talking with kids about race starts as simply as answering honestly questions young people have about what they see in the news and in the world around them. On our website, we’ve shared resources for talking with kids about race. If you have young people in your life, I encourage you to check them out.”
What impact are you hoping these plays have on the Columbus community?
“I hope that these plays spark conversation across our community about race in America and the disconnects in racial conversation. I hope the plays are helpful tools for parents talking to their kids about race, for teachers in classrooms, and for the community at large as we all think about and talk about our own racial experiences.
These plays are also a celebration of many Columbus artists. With nine actors, four directors, three stage managers, and even more support behind the scenes, these productions are a testament to the talent of our community.”
What is something special about these plays that you’d like the audience to know?
“Playwright Idris Goodwin, with TYA/USA, has made these plays free and open to “be read and produced across communities.” There’s a wonderful connection between playwright and community there. You can read the scripts here.
As well, for almost everyone involved in these plays, this is our first time working virtually. It has been a new way of connecting. We’re used to being in the same room with each other and with you, the audience. But we’ve found that we’ve been able to connect virtually, to have these conversations, and to engage with this important material. I hope you are able to engage as well and that these four plays spark conversations in your family, amongst your friends, and in your communities.”