The Ladies Ring Shout
The Ladies Ring Shout is a 90 minute performance work combining spoken word, movement, and an original soundtrack. The multimedia work journeys through contemporary women of color’s experiences. LRS meditates on four frames integrated into our lived realities – the statistics and sociological condition of women of color, our mundane everyday acts, the codes and rules we are disciplined into, and the myths we conjure to imagine our future possibilities. Booking information
The Ladies Ring Shout is a sounding ground and witness space acknowledging the roadblocks and pressures experienced by females of color. Tackling topics such as gender representation, trauma, ways of nurturing, achieving work-life balance and finding contemporary spirituality, the Ladies Ring Shout invites today’s women to shift and heal their own perceptions of personal power through creativity. Performance is our therapy, our catharsis and our way to community. Performance is the haven that welcomes us to rediscover our own worth.
The Ladies Ring Shout seeks to widen the scope of representational possibilities for women of color. We feel compelled to do it both in the private space of a workshop and the public testimonial space of performance, revitalizing the call to action articulated by our black/women of color feminist foremothers – Audre Lorde, Nikki Giovanni, Barbara Christian, Gloria Anzaldua, Cherrie Moruga, M. Jacqui Alexander, Octavia Butler, Patricia Hill Collins, Ntozake Shange.
While envisioning our performance work as a measure of feminist-focused social justice, the Ladies Ring Shout also uses performance as a workshop curriculum encouraging women to utilize wellness strategies of deep reflection, play and experimentation. The Ladies Ring Shout uses the tools we use every day in our smaller circles of female support – sharing words and laughter, divulging secrets, engaging images, text, rhythm, movement and other forms of expression – in order to cope, function, heal and thrive.
Chicago Reader: Sketchbook 2011 review: ”Suspect Politic…provides a stiletto-sharp rundown of Strong Black Woman cliches in mass culture and a pungent reminder of the limited representations of black female experience, both in feminism and movies.”
Chicago Tribune: Sketchbook 2011 review: ”Part police interrogation, part poetry slam, the piece features some of the wittiest writing in the festival as it tears down stereotypes.”
WBEZ Morning Rehearsal: Chicago Theater 6/9: “Amid a placid pool filled mostly with inoffensive offerings swimming in circles, Suspect Politic is the fish that’s taking a walk up the bank.”
Time Out Chicago: Sketchbook 11 review: ”A sharp take on African-American female experience.”