More Monologues on Black Life

Overview

In acting classes all over the country, African American students are routinely given monologues either from old Black plays like A Raisin in the Sun or contemporary Anglo plays, prompting them to ask, "Where are the new works aimed at us?" Students need material that is fresh and authentic, material that speaks in their language and to their concerns.

Gus Edwards returns with a second collection of probing and practical monologues on Black life. Whether you are an African ...

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Overview

In acting classes all over the country, African American students are routinely given monologues either from old Black plays like A Raisin in the Sun or contemporary Anglo plays, prompting them to ask, "Where are the new works aimed at us?" Students need material that is fresh and authentic, material that speaks in their language and to their concerns.

Gus Edwards returns with a second collection of probing and practical monologues on Black life. Whether you are an African American seeking audition and performance material written in contemporary language or an educator trying to offer students of color something more than tired, hand-me-down monologues, this collection presents fresh material written in a voice that reflects the modern African American experience.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Nothing evokes as much dread and anguish from both actors and directors as the obligatory audition monolog. The "What-are-you-going-to-do-for-us?" call has all too often been met with the chronically abused Blanche DuBois or Sam Shepard response. Fortunately, publishers like Smith & Kraus and Heinemann have raised the monolog selection bar considerably in recent years, with contemporary collections that often address neglected constituencies like African Americans and women. As he did in his 1997 collection, Monologues on Black Life, Edwards (theater, Arizona State Univ.) addresses the paucity of relevant selections for modern black actors by offering a twist on the orthodox monolog compilation. The 50 pieces he assembles are original, including a beautifully elegaic six-part monolog play, "The Sorrows of Elva." Divided among half a dozen short story-like sections, Edwards's speeches are alternately raw and poetic, reflecting a wide diversity of ages, settings, and contemporary themes that are more individually complete and whole than the typically out-of-context three-minute speech. In the third installment of her popular "Monologues for Women by Women" series, Haring-Smith (English and theater, Brown Univ.) takes a more traditional approach. She gathers 57 selections that collectively represent the freshest and most vibrant assemblage of monologs for women by women now available in the contemporary, fringe, alternative, and international theater (the inclusion of playwrights outside the United States is new). Like Edwards's collection, the monologs included here are all over the emotional and social map. Haring-Smith also provides an extremely actor-friendly subject index that groups the speeches by broad subject headings like "Body Image and Issues," "Race and Ethnicity," and "Aging," among others. She also includes a useful section that offers tips for auditioning with a monolog and brief notes on each playwright. Both titles are most enthusiastically recommended for theater and acting collections at all levels serving the needs of black and female actors.--Barry X. Miller, Austin P.L., TX Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780325002897
  • Publisher: Heinemann
  • Publication date: 7/6/2000
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 176
  • Sales rank: 1,428,304
  • Product dimensions: 5.08 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 0.38 (d)

Meet the Author

One of America's leading playwrights, Gus Edwards is also a director and educator. He has written several books addressing the concerns of African American theatre and is a tenured faculty member of Arizona State University's theatre department, where he teaches film and theatre studies. His first collection, Monologues on Black Life (1997), was also published by Heinemann.
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Table of Contents

WE IS WHO WE WANT TO BE

Just Cause (Lorraine-30s) / The Imposter (Dennis-30s) / In Violence We Trust (Joanie-20s) / The Trainer (Louie-40s) / Sunday Morning Memories (Cynthia-30s) / The Lottery Winner (Sophie-50s) / Hate (Barney-30s) / Dream Lover: Mr. Blues (April-30s) / You Can't Win for Losing (Preston-40s) / The Cellist (Renee-20s) / The Magician (Wilson-50s) / Some Men (Laurie-20s) / The Evangelist (Yannis-30s) / The Living Symbol (Fletcher-40s) / Us (Jamilia-20s) / Silent No More (Harris-20s)

MOODY'S MOOD CAFE

This Business (Nunez-30s) / An Old, Old Story (Ruth-40s) / A Puzzlement (Ronny-30s) / Something Artistic (Tiny-20s) / Taking It Slow (Mr. Aubrey-60s) / Dreams: A Warning (Ben-20s) / Best Excuse in the World (Eugenie-30s) / Man in the News (Olivia-30s)

THE PROJECTS

Moving Around (Tony P.-20s) / Coming to Terms (Maya-20s) / Forty Deuce Street (Ike-40s) / Six Weeks (Venessa-19) / Remembering Teddy (Clarence-40s) / What It's All About (Floyd-18) / A Military Man (Jake-40s) / It Just Goes to Show (Clemmie-40s) / Slow Dancing with Nichelle (Donzell-20s) / A Different World (Wilson-60s)

THE SORROWS OF ELVA

A Monologue Play in Six Parts

A Fool Not to Marry

Nicest man in the World

Ain't Like It Used to Be

Something Happened

Only a Matter of Time

Dreams Die First

RAP TALK

The Professor (Male-16 to 23) / The Other Me (Vinette-20s) / I Used to Be Cool (Male-17 to 25) / Andy's Rap (Andy-20s) / The American Tradition (Male/Female-20s)

FIVE BLACK HEROES IN MONOLOGUES

I Will Raise Both My Hands: Frederick Douglass

Why I Sing Gospel: Mahalia Jackson

My Own Private Blues: Charles "Buddy" Bolden

Coretta Remembers: Coretta Scott King

A Dream of Deliverance: James Baldwin

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