Birmingham 1963 performing at Downtown Art 2/19 – 2/27


b7ff0281-4660-4fb0-ac28-5cfbb7017dac

BIRMINGHAM 1963 is the story of the struggle for civil rights based on oral histories and interviews of those who were there.  Performed by an ensemble of young women, ages 14-17, BIRMINGHAM 1963 highlights the critical role of young people in the campaign.

“Young people today ask me .. ‘When are we all gonna be able to get together like you all were in the 60’s?’  Nobody was together in the 60’s.  It was a small group of dedicated people who got it started… and then the kids took it over.” – Andy Young, Southern Christian Leadership Conference.

Please join us for performances:

Fridays – February 19 & 26
Saturdays – February 20 & 27
All shows 7:30pm

One hour performance followed by dessert & conversation with the company.

Downtown Art, 61 E. 4th Street, NYC
Adults $10 / Youth 18 and under $8
Purchase Tickets

Company members include: Juanita Andrade, Sanique Delpesche, Zola Gray, Mae Hardman Hill, Sierra Christine Johns, Samantha Levine, Fatou Niang, Anais Quiles-Lewis, Mariah Rivera, and Yelena Virovlyanskaya.

Directed by Ryan Gilliam, and music by your friendly Man About Town.

The Great Struggle for Cheap Meat


The Great Struggle for Cheap Meat (Downtown Art) – Photo R Gilliam

Just about 110 years ago, the price of kosher meat pretty much doubled overnight.  If you were a Jewish homemaker who had to make every penny count in order to keep your family fed, this wasn’t just an inconvenience:  it was a serious threat to your economic stability.  What’s more, it smacked of racketeering by wholesalers who had a captive market of consumers for kosher foods, and recalled anti-Jewish oppression levied through taxes on Kosher foods in other countries.

Jewish women fought back.  They organized a massive boycott of butchers and meat wholesalers that not only succeeded in bringing the prices back down, but became a seminal act of defiance in community organizing and paved the way for major rent and labor strikes to come (including the 1907 Rent Strike and the Uprising of the 20,000).

We’ve made it into a rock musical.  And it opens tomorrow, so buy your tickets here.    Continue reading