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Soul Rep Theatre Company Kicks off its Season with TRAVISVILLE, a Play Inspired by Jim Schutze’s THE ACCOMMODATION

William Jackson Harper
William Jackson Harper

In December, Soul Rep Theatre Company will kick-off its 2022-2023 season – TO DALLAS, WITH LOVE – with Dallas native, celebrated television/film actor and playwright, William Jackson Harper’s searing drama, TRAVISVILLE, inspired by Jim Schutze’s book, “The Accommodation.” The regional premiere production is directed by Soul Rep’s Artistic Director, Guinea Bennett-Price, and will run December 10 – 11 and 15 – 18 at the Margo Jones Theater located in the Magnolia Lounge at Fair Park, 1121 First Avenue. Tickets can be purchased at www.soulrep.org and range from $25 – $30. Group Tickets are also available.

TRAVISVILLE is a straight-forward and brutally honest statement to the world by African Americans of their plight in gentrification. Penned by Harper, the play is set in 1960’s Texas, in a city (Dallas) that so far has avoided the tumult of the Civil Rights Movement. Through the efforts of an alliance of black church leaders, a wary peace has been maintained with the city’s white mayor and citizens. But when the mayor partners with a private developer to gentrify the black neighborhood and uproot its residents, and a movement organizer from Atlanta comes to town, the Minister’s Alliance will need to choose between the nonconfrontational status quo and standing up for the interests of their community.

The relevance of Schutze’s book and this play in 2022 is astounding! Soul Rep is privileged to be the first theater company in North Texas to produce TRAVISVILLE, of which the company recently held staged readings at four area libraries, in collaboration with the Dallas Public Library and Big D Reads. The company will hold talk-backs with audience members after two of the performances.

Soul Rep’s season will continue in February 2023 with a two-week run of Canadian play-wright, Michele Riml’s delightful comedy, SEXY LAUNDRY, about a middle-aged couple’s attempt to revive their sex life. The production, directed by Co-Associate Artistic Director, Dee HunterSmith, will run February 10 – 12 & February 15 – 18 at the Margo Jones Theater. On April 22, the company will debut THE TUCKER NEW WORKS PROJECT, an official play development series, made possible by a generous TACA New Works Grant and named in memory of prolific area playwright and Soul Rep mentor, dianne tucker. The “project” will include a staged reading of a newly commissioned comedic play about being Black and queer, by up-and-coming Dallas playwright, Erin Malone. A full production of Malone’s play will be featured in Soul Rep’s 2023-2024 season.

Accomodation

Soul Rep’s season will conclude with its well established biennial new play festival, THE SHINE PLAY FESTIVAL, in June 2023 at Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. The festival will feature performances of several short comedic and satirical plays exploring Black lives, Black history, Black love and so much more! It will also include a staged reading of company Co-Founder/Executive Director, Anyika McMillan-Herod’s newest play, ELM THICKET, a two-person comedy set in Dallas. Herod’s critically acclaimed historical drama, DO NO HARM, was featured earlier this year as part of ATTPAC’s Elevator Series to sold out performances at the Wyly Theater.

Season Passes for Soul Rep’s TO DALLAS, WITH LOVE season can be purchased for $65 or $80 at the company’s website, www.soulrep.org. The current season is sponsored in part by generous support from TACA, City of Dallas Office of Art and Culture, Moody Fund for the Arts, and the Holloway Family Foundation.

SOUL REP THEATRE COMPANY’S MISSION & VISION

Soul Rep Theatre Company exists to provide quality transformative Black Theater. Our vision is to shift the paradigm of how the Black experience is valued.

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