Saturday, August 23, 2008

Not a Genuine Black Man

For our 2nd theatre night out (my parent's gift to us when Logan was born), Jon and I enjoyed a local play, a hit solo show, a comedian and now celebrity: Brian Copeland.

His show, Not a Genuine Black Man, was fantastic. But don't let people like my father fool you. He told me "It's a comedy". And so, I sat through the first 15 minutes of the play thinking, "Well this isn't very funny". And then I sat through the next 15 minutes thinking "When's the comedy going to begin??" and another 15 minutes later I thought "The playbill says he's a comedian, but this shit is pretty dark."

I finally realized, the show is perhaps more akin to your Shakespearean problem play. There WAS (finally) some comedy sprinkled in here and there, but it was disguised amidst the heavy themes of racial prejudice and stereotypes, physical and emotional abuse, community and sense of belonging, inspiration and respect, and of course, family.

Still, it was poignant, touching, ever heart wrenching. Particularly as a native Bay Area kid, and now parent.

Tomorrow (Sunday the 24th) is his last day at San Jose's Hoover Theatre. He will also be back for two matinée shows the first two Sundays in October.

If you're local and haven't seen his show yet, go buy your tickets now. If you're not local (sucks to be you), go buy his book instead. You can thank me later.


Grandma Riedy said...

This reminds me of a group called "Sweet Honey in The Rock". Everyone first thinks they are just a feel good singing group, but they sing acapella and are a political raise awareness group.

I was at their concert and then it hit someone in the audience what they were saying and he started booing. They had to remove him. Ha, Ha, he just thought they were pretty African-American women there to entertain him with feely good music.

Mama Bree said...

Ah yes, I know Sweet Honey in The Rock very well, and love them very much. Inspiring beautiful music....