On Juneteenth (the African American holiday celebrating slavery's end), five writers spend the night in a cellar kitchen where enslaved people were once held enchained by the town of New Paltz's colonial founding families. Crafting reflections on their transformative experience, they performed their monologues -- in a program titled "Reclaiming Our Time" -- before a live audience at the historic Reformed Church of New Paltz.
"I know what you're all thinking: what does one wear to a slave quarter sleepover?" With that, Victory Reese opened the evening with the first of five monologues -- a meditation on slavery and "a conversation on race," if ever there was.
The singers and musicians: Theresa V. Briggs, Rev. Evelyn Clarke, Rita M. Worthington, and members of the New Progressive Baptist Church choir.
Here's what makes this show extra-special:
Both Dr. W. E. B. Du Bois (Co-founder of the NAACP and the "Father of Pan-Africanism") and Sojourner Truth (self-emancipated ex-slave, abolitionist, and human rights activist) are connected to the families of Historic Huguenot Street.
Also heard on the show:
"Tears for Johannesburg" from "We Insist! Max Roach's Freedom NOW Suite" performed by Max Roach, Abbey Lincoln, Booker Little, and Olatunji.
Tags: Historic Huguenot Street, The Slave Dwelling Project, TMI Project, #BlackStoriesMatter, Terry James, Joseph McGill, Reformed Church of New Paltz, SUNY New Paltz, WJFF
Hear the full show (uploaded Mondays):