Live Garra Theatre Presents
"Talking to America: One Dream at a Time"
"An encore presentation of the well-received, spoken word, dramatic storytelling of performers from multicultural backgrounds."
A reprint of the Arts & Humanities Culture Spotlight Article: The Voice of a 'New' America by Eric Althoff: "Wanda Whiteside believes immigration is what continues to make America great. Thus, the artistic director of Silver Spring’s Live Garra Theatre, is giving “new” Americans a platform for speaking their truths about their adopted homeland. The live show, “America’s Talking: A People’s Mosaic,” which will be filmed by the Silver Spring-based Gandhi Brigade Youth Media group, seeks to explore American identity as seen through not only recent comers to this country, but also via the musical and oral traditions whose ancestry now forms part of the American fabric.
"It occurred to me that there were people who were asking what it means to be an American in this country. Is there a moment in their lives that made them feel that they connected?” Whiteside said of the project, which is being funded in part through a grant from Maryland Humanities. “I wanted to bring the local immigrant community together to tell their story. That’s what became ‘America’s Talking,’ where they engage in poetry and dramatic story telling so we can learn more about each other in this big, beautiful world we live in.”
Whiteside said there always has been a nativist element in the U.S. when it comes to the newest wave of immigrants and that the current border backlash is perhaps little different than previous instances throughout our history. “It’s unfortunate because I believe it really is just a matter of fear of the unknown and what you don’t understand. That’s why that defense is there,” she observed. “So that’s part of the [exercise], why we all are sort of exposing ourselves and saying, ‘I don’t fear you; I’m not afraid to show you who I am. Please don’t fear me.
THIS PROJECT IS SUPPORTED IN PART BY