Posts tagged Coppin State University
Mama Rashida in Coppin State University's Tell Pharaoh
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By: Mama Kay

Tell Pharaoh is a play written by Loften Mitchell in 1963. The play was edgy for it’s time period, and progressive for the time that it was in. But for now a few things had to be tweaked because it was written about the black experience in New York City. The professor/director Willie O. Jordan, tweaked the play so that the focus didn’t revolve around New York. It was brilliantly executed by the cast and the singing was excellent. You know, Mama Rashida always complains that she was gonna forget her lines, and seeing her in a play that I did not participate in, I could tell that her hand was deeply involved. I know her rhythm, I know how she thinks, and I know how she embellishes the show with her experiences.\

You know Mama Rashida is a lover of black history. And when she played Rosa Parks, it was amazing. Christian Harris was phenomenal in the show. She played one of the main characters and she is a Nu World actress and singer. Her singing was exquisite and her trained voice was utilized in ways that I hadn’t heard before. Her levels that she used was amazing. My mother, Geraldine Waters, almost fainted when Christian sang, “Everything must change.” The Coppin Repertory Theatre should be proud of a show that was well-executed and brought back to life with their modern touches.

Mama Rashida in Coppin State University's Tell Pharaoh Show
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by: Mama Rashida

“Tell Pharaoh” is a musical written by Loften Mitchell. It is directed by my theatre teacher and a mentor to many…Professor Willie O. Jordan.  As an elder who has returned to school, (I’m a Junior at CSU) I feel so honored to be on stage with my fellow cast members who are such talented young performers.  I feel so honored to once again to be able to tell the story of Africans born in America, whose contributions to this country and to the world must always be remembered. If you can’t find Mama Rashida, I am somewhere studying new choreography, songs, or my lines. My lines!!!! I am being paid back for every time I said to the cast at WombWork, “You had better come back here with those lines memorized.” LOL!!! Hard work and fun!!!! Come join us for evening of music, dance and live theatre.

Press Release:

BALTIMORE—The Coppin Repertory Theatre will conclude the 2017-2018 Social Justice Theatre Season with Loften Mitchell’s concert drama, Tell Pharaoh: The Cries Of Africa’s New World Children. Performances are scheduled December 8-11, 2017 in the Theatre Lab, located on the lower level of the Grace Jacobs Building.  Show times are 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Saturday and Monday; 3:00 p.m. on Sunday.

Tell Pharaoh is a live docu-drama woven with theatre . . . spoken word . . . song and dance . . . on a journey that chronicles the trials, tribulations and triumphs of the African American’s journey to America.

Highly regarded as a playwright, historian, author, librettist and teacher, Loften Mitchell (1919-2001) was an early leader of the black theater movement. His critical works, such as Black Drama: The Story of the American Negro in the Theatre (1967) and Voices of the Black Theatre (1975), documents the contributions of African Americans to the theatre.  His plays include Blood in the Night (1946), A Land Beyond the River (1957), Tell Pharaoh (1963, 1987), the Off-Broadway musical Ballad for Bimshire (1963) and Broadway’s Tony-nominated musical, Bubblin’ Brown Sugar (1975).