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Playhouse on Park Receives Grant from Connecticut Humanities

The Scottsboro Boys at Playhouse on Park, courtesy Meredith Longo

The grant will fund ‘talkbacks’ that follow each performance of ‘The Scottsboro Boys’ at the West Hartford theater.

The Scottsboro Boys at Playhouse on Park, courtesy Meredith Longo

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A $4,675 grant to Playhouse on Park awarded by Connecticut Humanities is enabling the nonprofit professional theater to hold talkbacks after each performance of their final show of Season 10: Kander and Ebb’s “The Scottsboro Boys.”

In the world of theater, show talkbacks entail a question and answer session with the audience and cast members. Talkbacks are generally limited to once a week during the show’s run. Given the content of The Scottsboro Boys, however, Playhouse on Park thought it best to hold a talkback after every performance during its run from June 26-Aug. 4.

Nominated for a staggering 12 Tony Awards, The Scottsboro Boys is not only a triumph of the American musical theatre, but also a true story that still demands to be told nearly 90 years after its occurrence. This gripping musical turns the tables on an infamous event in American history that took place in Alabama in which nine African-American men were accused of a crime they did not commit.

Talkbacks have been facilitated by prominent community leaders who are also people of color; the conversations thus far have been honest and enlightening. It is the hope of Playhouse on Park that its production and talkbacks spark ideas into action through this entertaining and challenging show.

Actor Ivory McKay, who plays Mr. Bones in “The Scottsboro Boys,” commented, “I know that the audiences are listening. Everyone – age, color, whatever – are listening. You know that they are taking it in. I think that [the cast] are reclaiming back a personal identity of our tapestry.”

Playhouse Theatre Group, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide quality entertainment at affordable costs to as broad an audience as possible, embracing opportunity for professional and emerging artists, and to be an integral member of its community.

Connecticut Humanities, a nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, supports cultural and historic organizations that tell the state’s stories, build community and enrich lives.

For more information about Playhouse on Park and its work, please contact the box office at 860-523-5900 x10 or visit www.playhouseonpark.org. Playhouse on Park is located at 244 Park Rd., West Hartford 06119.

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The Scottsboro Boys at Playhouse on Park, courtesy Meredith Longo

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