CHOOSE A PERFORMANCE


March 4 – 13

Lab Theatre

Directed by Tracey Copeland Halter

“I can ruin your life with a stroke of my pen.”

A Black high school student sits under a tree seemingly reserved for whites.  The next day, three nooses appear on the tree.  A few weeks later, a fight erupts. The Black students are charged with attempted murder.  Inspired by the true story of the Jena 6, racial double standards and inequality in the criminal justice system are explored in this contemporary drama from the playwright of Detroit ’67.

Running Time: This production runs approximately 90 minutes, with no intermission.

The Daily Beacon review (pdf)
Arts Knoxville review (pdf)

HIGHLIGHTS

Alan Toney and Abigail McCarter; by Ella Marston

Jasmine R. Handy and LoRen Seagrave; by Ella Marston

Jasmine R. Handy; by Ella Marston

Cast in Blood at the Root; by Ella Marston

Cast in Blood at the Root; by Ella Marston



Advisories


This production uses strong language, racial slurs, and symbols of violence to accurately depict the story of the Jena 6. Recommended for ages 14+.




EVENTS

“What Does Systemic Racism Look Like to You?” Photo Exhibit

March 2-13  |  CBT Lobby
Noon - 5 pm and prior to the performances of Blood at the Root

Join us to view a series of photos created by 15 area high school youth answering that question.

Photo: Rondre’a Peebles
Photo: Rondre’a Peebles

The Youth PhotoVoice Project is an expressive opportunity provided through a partnership of the City of Knoxville's Empower Knox Initiative and the University of Tennessee College of Social Work, funded by a Social Justice Innovation Initiative Grant through the College of Social Work. Fifteen high school students were selected to participate in the six-week project that began January 19 and included weekly discussions on how they are affected by systemic racism, and how to capture those experiences in photos. All sessions were held at the YWCA Phyllis Wheatley Center, and each youth was provided a camera to keep at the end of the project. Special guests for sessions included Saray Taylor-Roman, a Knoxville-based world renowned portrait photographer, and Joe Woods (professionally know as Black Atticus) who is a spoken word artist and poet. These guests helped advise on how to create impact in photos and narratives for PhotoVoice and shared their own experiences of systemic racism as well.

The exhibit will remain in the lobby of the Clarence Brown Theatre for the duration of the theatre's performances of Blood at the Root, a production centered around the story of the Jena 6 that addresses systemic racism experienced by a group of high schoolers in Louisiana in 2006. At the end of the show's run, the exhibit will be shown in the City County Building in the Mayor's corridor.


The Youth PhotoVoice Project is provided by Empower Knox and funded by a Social Justice Innovation Grant from the University of Tennessee College of Social Work.





Cast