Arts & Culture Editor
On Tuesday, February 18 at the Ware Center, the performing arts and Black History Month come together to perform “Rosa, A Tribute to Rosa Parks”, a historically accurate piece about Rosa Parks and her stand for justice.
“Rosa, A Tribute to Rosa Parks” is the second of four one person shows at Millersville’s performing arts center in downtown Lancaster. Director, Barry Scott, has been in the process of putting the show together bringing JRA artists out of New York with Jessica Townsend starring as Rosa. Being the only actor on stage, Jessica will act as Rosa through her experience starting with her normal life, her experience and emotions when making the decision to not get out of her seat, followed by the changes in the country after her brave defiance on the bus. Though this is a one person play, it’s not to be doubted in any sense. Jessica brings the emotion and talent to the stage playing Rosa as if there were a cast on the stage with her.
Produced by The American Negro Playwright Theatre based in Nashville, Tennessee, this powerful play that is based on the prominent figure during the Civil Rights Movement will be performed for one night. ANPT is a non-profit entity with a mission to bring together and sustain the most talented, visible, and viable professional African American Theatre in America and is devoted to outreach, educate and empower through the arts.
This one actor play will tell the story of Rosa Parks on that forever memorable day, December 1, 1955 in Montgomery Alabama when pride was a dangerous emotion for African Americans to have with the threat of brutality, violence and death it was clear why many didn’t speak out until Rosa took a chance by claiming her seat on the bus. What now seems to be a simple decision was a life changing moment for her and the country for racial segregation that put into action a boycott of the public transportation system that would change the course of American History.
A legacy that still lives on today, this enticing, award-winning, one-woman show drives into the story behind this prominent figure in the Freedom Movement giving the audience a look into the faith and courage of Rosa Parks’ stand and the events that followed bringing the audience to a realization and touching experience that could be close to tears. This play based on influential events from history reminds today’s society how much our country has changed through the years with the chance now to reflect on this country’s progress and what more it should do today to end this negative attitude all together. Celebrating Rosa Parks and her stance on civil rights has gained much attention not only in the media but within the performing arts. February is Black History Month and the Ware Center will bring this performance of Rosa Parks to celebrate this historical, brave and changing moment to the stage.
“Rosa, A Tribute to Rosa Parks” will be performed at the Ware Center in Lancaster on Tuesday, February 18 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets cost $18 for the general public, $15 for seniors and $5 for students as there will be reserved seating. Tickets are available online at artsmu.com, by calling 717-871-2308 or in person at the Ware Center Box Office or at the SMC building on Millersville University’s campus.