Consider this my Black History Month post for the year, okay?
I was in Atlanta last weekend and took the opportunity to visit with one of the "daughters" my wife and I have collected through her work in college theater. Marion Wright is a native of Gainesville (she's been involved with us for more than a quarter-century and our interactions with her began with the University of Florida Upward Bound program), a FAMU graduate, earned a graduate degree from Illinois, and is now lecturing at Spelman College:
Isn't she beautiful? Last weekend they were concluding their production of Crowns, a fantastic play by Regina Taylor and quite an homage to black women and their hats. As it turns out, my wife is directing that very same play at FAMU this weekend.
Yes, that's wifey. Isn't she beautiful? Though that shot is from a trip we took to St. Augustine back in the 80's, she's still got that Carolina Lowcountry beauty -- and she wears her "crowns" particularly well, too.
I'm expecting family and friends from Jacksonville (today is my mother's 77th birthday), Orlando, Miami, Atlanta, Philadelphia and New York to make their way over to The Hill to see the show. So this is going to be a great weekend for me.
I want to close with a shot of the flyer FAMU's Essential Theatre produced for the show; it's just an incredibly good shot of a woman in her magnificent hat and I just hope it comes across on this blog. There's something about the photo; at times, I just can't seem to stop staring at it:
I hear that Valencia has put together an excellent cast and it's a great production. She is supremely talented at what she does so that doesn't surprise me at all. As you probably noticed, T"Keyah Crystal Keymah has come home to headline the show and it is complemented by a good collection of current FAMU students, a four-piece band from the music department, and one alumnus who is also a faculty member, Marci Stringer:
Marci, by the way, will probably be the next star to come from Rattler Nation (she got her graduate degree from U.F., by the way, so she's another one of us RattlerGators) and may very well be heading out to Hollywood soon.
I especially wanted my mother to see this show (she's fierce with her hats!) but she's been battling pneumonia and this winter just won't seem to let up. Hopefully she is able to make it over and enjoy the heck out of her special day.