|Syreeta Banks in "Hair"|
I am a child of the ‘60s. And when I say this, I literally mean that I was a child then. I was born in 1961, so I came of age in the Reagan era. Youth then (myself certainly included) bore little resemblance to the free-loving flower children who took it upon themselves to protest the Vietnam War and other social injustices.
I vividly remember researching sit-ins and protests from the
1960s for a paper I wrote in college. It was very eye-opening. It sounded exciting and energizing to fight
for a cause, and I wished I had grown up just a few years earlier. (Of course, there might have been a bit of romanticizing going on.)
Fast forward to 2015 and Venice Theatre’s production of “Hair:
An American Tribal Rock Musical.” I was thrilled to see the show, not only because it
evoked those memories, but because it was directed by the amazing
|Ben Vereen at aaCT WorldFest|
During the Festival, Mr. Vereen taught a master class to five young actors with a theater full of people looking on. I was amazed at how transformative his quiet words were to the actors. If just a few words could have such an impact, what would community actors be able to achieve after working with him for an extended period?
|Vera Samuels in "Hair"|
Maybe I grew up at the right time after all.