UNIVERSITY PARK | Governors State University Center for Performing Arts opens its 2012-13 “One More Night” Series with a significant theater event – playwright Shepsu Aakhu’s “Speaking in Tongues: The Chronicles of Babel.”
The play is coming to GSU Center for one performance only at 8 p.m. Saturday.
“Speaking in Tongues,” presented by MPAACT Productions, is the story of an extended family living in Chicago’s now-demolished Washington Park housing project. Aakhu based his play on many hours of oral history recollections that he gathered from family members.
“My family and their collective voices helped to define a way of life in the Washington Park projects that no longer exists,” Aakhu says. “The world that we revisit here now exists only in our collective memories.”
In “Speaking in Tongues,” the mosaic of voices honestly portrays the life of this extended family, the housing project, and the greater American experiment with housing for the urban poor.
Andrea J. Dymond directs “Speaking in Tongues.” Castmembers include Eddie Jordan III, Felicia McNeal, Sidney Miller, Delali Potakey, Mateo Smith, Demetria Thomas, and Tina Marie Wright.
Critics applauded the play when it was first performed at Chicago’s Greenhouse Theatre Center.
“This is a brilliant play to which I give my highest recommendation,” wrote Chicago Theater Beat.
“Aakhu's insightful, engaged, articulate interviewees make extraordinary company, and director Andrea Dymond's exquisite cast speak with the kind of graceful candor that makes everything ring true,” wrote the Chicago Reader.
Tickets for “Speaking in Tongues: The Chronicles of Babel.” are $30. To purchase tickets, or for further information, contact the GSU Center box office at www.centertickets.net or (708) 235-2222. The box office is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday and two hours prior to performances.
“Speaking in Tongues” is the first of four One More Night productions in GSU Center’s 2012-2013 season. “One More Night,” funded for a second year by a grant from The Chicago Community Trust, brings the finest in Chicago-area theater to local audiences. Other shows in this year’s series are “Braid Tales,” presented by Kuumba Lynx/FootworKINGz, featuring the South Shore Drill Team, on Jan. 26; “Shakti Chakra – The Energy Cycle,” presented by Natya Dance Theatre on Feb. 16; and Orbert Davis’ Chicago Jazz Philharmonic, on March 10.
MPAACT Productions, a professional, nonprofit theater association based in Chicago, was founded in 1990. MPAACT’s mission is to develop, nurture, and sustain original Afrikan Centered Theater as a multidisciplinary art form of American theater.
Multibuy/Megabuy packages are available at GSU Center. Choose any three or four shows and receive the Multibuyer discount; choose any five or more shows and receive the Megabuy discount. In addition to big savings, package holders receive ticket exchange privileges with 72-hour notice or more, priority seating, and more. Packages are available for purchase through the box office only and are not currently available online.
GSU Center is located on the campus of Governors State University, 1 University Parkway.