Theatre Mirror Reviews - "Black Nativity"

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"What Happened in Boston, Willie"

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note: entire contents copyright 2003 by Carl A. Rossi


"BLACK NATIVITY"

a gospel song-play by Langston Hughes
Executive Producer and Director: Elma Lewis
Producer and Musical Director: John Andrew Ross
Choreographer: George Howard

Narrator (Principal): Voncile Ross; Hon. Milton L. Wright
Narrator: Danny Morris; Terri Taylor
Narration: Sele ‘Fana Kamau
Mary: Shaynah Barnes; Toni S. Jackson; Mercedes Neves; Desiree Springer-O’Neal
Joseph: Wyatt “Mo’gee” Jackson; Michael Shannon, MD; Bi-Kim

with

Voices of Black Persuasion and Children of Black Persuasion

Musicians:

Organ & Piano: John Andrew Ross; Pearl Allen; Stephen Hunter, Sr.
Electric Bass: John (Lennie) Bradford; Langston Smith; Tim Ingles; Thomas Hebb
African Percussion: Mamadou Ndiaye; Stephen P. O’Neal I; S Korliss O’Neal II; Herbert Maisonet, Jr.; Salim A. Rahman; Dares Ware

Langston Hughes’ BLACK NATIVITY has concluded its 34th season in Boston. I first attended a performance about seven years ago; many things in my life have changed since then but BLACK NATIVITY remains as fresh and joyous as ever.

Mr. Hughes’ gospel song-play is exactly that: a celebration of the Coming and Birth of Christ, done with a minimum of plot and a maximum of song: hand-clapping, soul-stirring song. To debate whether BLACK NATIVITY is a musical, a concert or a mass is moot; it will sweep you up in its loving embrace and leave you a round-eyed child learning the true meaning of Christmas --- spiritual, not material. I wouldn’t say this was the one show you had to see this holiday season, but it was certainly the best one on which to end your holiday theatergoing.

"Black Nativity" (28 November-21 December)
THE NATIONAL CENTER OF AFRO-AMERICAN ARTISTS, INC.
The Tremont Temple, 88 Tremont Street, BOSTON, MA
1 (617) 423-6398

THE THEATER MIRROR, New England’s LIVE Theater Guide

| MARQUEE | USHER | SEATS | INTERMISSION | CURTAIN |