Curio Theatre Company Presents: The Winter’s Tale

Where do I start? I had the most magical time at this production. I love everything about a Bohemian garden and what’s better than a Bohemian garden?  A Bohemian beer garden and taking my love of all things Shakespeare to another level.  That’s right it was like getting a two for one in fun and theatre at the same time.

I am so grateful for being exposed to Shakespeare in High School. It really changed my outlook in plays and poetry. When you combine it and have an outstanding production like Curio Theatre has, it was amazing. Every last actor, played their part. They really played them well. I was in the front row where I love to be and the action captured me. I left the theatre unable to go to sleep.

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I laughed so hard even though a Winter’s Tale is about Leontes, King of Sicillia gets into a jealous rage thinking that his friend, Polixenes had an affair with his pregnant wife, Queen Hermione. If you never read this Shakespeare classic I won’t spoil it but it includes a lot of turns of events that feature violence, death, betrayal, and forgiveness. It’s true what they say about jealousy, it is a killer. What we think when we don’t control our thoughts turns into negativity and can hurt the ones we love! Nonetheless the pure emotion that each actor gave was amazing. Each actor captured their roles and even if you cant get past the Middle English of the time, if you listen with intent, they played their part enough for you to modernize it and understand it beautifully.

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Taking the production from inside and then outside to the Bohemian Beer Garden was the best surprise I didn’t even know I needed. The air was crisp, the wine was sweet and the actors continued to stay in their parts while we enjoyed the best acting intermission I had ever been too. Curio Theatre, this had to be the best part of my night. I had the most magical time. Everyone who attended smiled from ear to ear the entire time. It was a pleasant experience and if they ever have another production, I want to be in the seat.

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You only have 2 days to catch this treat. That’s right make your Friday night magical by getting tickets for the 8pm show or tomorrow’s final night at 8 as well. You can get your tickets here. One thing that Curio Theatre does is that when you get your tickets they encourage their new ticket initiative and that’s with Curiositix.  This is a new initiative that allows those who would have not been able to see amazing theatre and make it affordable. When you order your ticket at the time of ordering you can select how much you want to give toward the ticket. You can also even pay for your another ticket so that someone who can’t afford it can.  This is making sure that everyone has the opportunity to get that amazing exposure to theatre.  Also if you want to just donate, you can do that here as well.  No donate is too small.

I would recommend this production for over 15 years of age due to scenes of violence against women and adult themes.

Follow Curio Theatre on their social media channels so you don’t ever miss another production.  Who knows you may see me in the audience real soon:

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Thank you to all of the actors for a job well done. Thank you Curio Theatre for having me and thank you Carrie Gorn for the invite!

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How to Catch Creation

I had the honor of being invited to attend the opening show of How to Catch Creation. I actually withheld reading any reviews, or any the media write-up before hand because I love coming in without any thoughts of what to expect before hand. I was pleasantly surprised of this production. First of all the set was magnificent. I grew up in theatre so sets matter to me. Secondly the cast looked like me. I loved seeing all of the representation of pretty brown faces.  Third, the play captured my attention and gave me a whirlwind of surprises some subtle and some knocking me over.

Let me give honor to whom honor is due by saying that How to Catch Creation is coming off the acclaimed Kilroy’s list.  It’s a play about discovering legacy as well as what it means to create and how creation shifts during periods of life. Creation takes many forms from art, life, relationships, and how all of the loops come together. As a creator myself it definitely spoke to the hills and lows of life and watching my own work take dips according to what may or may not have taken off.

Christina Anderson, playwright, did an amazing job on capturing the experience of black queer feminist writer and how through her life, life has taken on turns that end up bringing the most unexpected people to unite. When you see the connection I found myself holding back in the audience try not to mess it up for someone who might not have. I laughed so hard during this play.  I loved at moments when the audience interacted right on cue without a notion. I also loved seeing Christina Anderson herself in the audience as well as the director, Nataki Garrett. Seeing them watch their work had to be amazing.

This play is for everyone. I do love how it highlights love and heartache for same-sex relationships.  To be honest sometimes society in my opinion forgets that they have an experience like everyone else. It’s not as easy even with society beginning to open up to what it means to be apart of the LGBTQ community and also be Black.  I enjoyed hearing prior to the show from Amber Hikes who is the Executive Director of LGBT Affairs for the city of Philadelphia. I didn’t even know there was a division first of all.  I also didn’t know that are only 3 other positions in the cities of the United States like it. There is definitely a need for all of us to be aware of what our city is offering. It was great knowing that the city of Philadelphia and the Mayor’s office is representing all walks of life.

So what were some of the themes presented:

Despair, from seeing Lindsay Smiling who played Griffin, try to work his way to normality after being wrongfully accused of a crime and incarcerated for 25 years. His struggle to want to have a child of his own as he learns about his mother and her past was incredible.

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Love, from Tiffani Barbour who play GK Marche a writer who falls in love with Natalie played by Shauna Miles and seeing who their love goes from incredible highs to the lows of breaking up and infidelity. Their love was priceless and unmatched until loneliness lead Natalie into the arms of another.

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Betrayal, Shayna Small plays Riley a young woman who has motivated her boyfriend, Stokes, played by Jonathan Bangs, who is losing his focus and rhythm.  Their beat is thrown off when Riley falls in love with Tami, played by Stephanie Weeks who is opening herself up to this forbidden love.  The beat is so off that now in order to get the rhythm back do they let go?  Do they go back to life before the betrayal? Can they co-exist?

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Explosive, fun, witty, and most importantly colorful are some of the best words to describe my experience. You are not going to want to miss out on this adventure. How to Catch Creation will be playing until April 14th. You can purchase tickets which range from $10-69 by clicking here

I would strongly encourage you to see the play and take some friends or family along as well. Thank you to the Philadelphia Theatre Company for as always inviting me and treating me above well. Thank you to Kory Aversa and Aversa PR for these opportunities as well. Thank you to the amazing cast of How to Catch Creation for such a wonderful time.  You all were professional and most gracious as well after the show.  Thanks to my personal team for always helping me get to these shows and for being the best caretakers for my littles!

 

 

 

 

Hurt People Hurt People But You Can Do Better

It would be nice if we lived in a world where we all could uplift one another.  This is simply and unfortunately not the case.  We live in the world where with the change in political climate we spend hours of a date arguing and tearing one another down. Even politics aside the nature of the human spirit is tested to do the right thing and help one another.  Listen outside of religion and race we are do really share a lot of common experiences.  Think about a new mom who is struggling with life for those first weeks. I don’t know a mom who either experienced or not doesn’t understand what that feels like. What about a new marriage?  A couple unites and struggles with the fusing of this new life.  This is a common experience.

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We need to do a better job in uplifting one another not just when things go wrong like for instance the example of Hurricane Harvey.  Although it’s a beautiful thing to see and is needed, we need to learn to not allow a disaster to come along and THEN we step up.  We have a human right to extend the very best to our fellow sisters and brothers all around the world.  Let me also put things into perspective.  I have some folks that I have a general disdain.  I do not like them, they do not like me, but I give them and anyonelse respect.  I do not have to break bread with some folks to show respect. This costs me nothing. However at the end of the day if I was in a fire, or sick, or drowning would it matter at that moment who saved me?  Most likely not.  My disdain would only come into play when I can control the playing field. With that in mind, I try to make sure that although I may close the door of fellowship based upon personal experience with others that I do not do that with people who have done nothing to me.  Meaning for some when they are hurt they take out on the rest of the world their pain.  Pain is very overwhelming.  However pain I am having with family doesn’t need to spill into my social life.  It’s hard too when that pain resembles and is reminded.  It’s like having a band-aid on and having it peeled off temporarily and the wound hasn’t healed.

I win when I show in spirit, thought, and deed in others’ winning with me or around me. I can’t tell you the countless times as a blogger that I have been asked questions about what to do in a situation.  I am about to celebrate 3 years I don’t even consider myself to be the best, YET, but helping someone get to where I am in hopes that they take off with their site, makes me happy and fulfilled.  Uplifting and wanting what’s best even for those that I may not know is important.  To the ones I don’t vibe well with, I never practice ill will towards them.  It’s a hard balance at times when you have been hurt but me holding onto hurt does nothing but brings me down.  I am not perfect in that category but I am definitely working towards being a better version of myself.  With this in mind, there may come a time when I get to a place where I can sit in their presence and enjoy it.  I can sit in anyone’s presence when I have to and not let it get to me but to be willing to do so when I don’t have to is called personal choice.  I feel that it shouldn’t be forced.  It should be natural.  I can be in a room and say hello, and keep it moving. However to be in the room and chat it up unnecessarily is a personal choice.  I can uplift them and want what’s best for them without interacting outside of the need.

As I see stories of families, friends and strangers coming together during Harvey I am hoping that this continues to spread after the effects of Harvey dies.  I hope this continues in how we interact with one another even on social media.  I am a professional debater but I refuse to tear someone down just because we don’t agree.  Now I may decide to keep it real and not interact with someone who I don’t have to, wish them well and move on but I am at a point that I am not going out of my way to be malicious.  I am going to show support of who you are and your right to be who you are.  No different from knowing a person who is nasty in their spirit.  From a far I can not interact with you, show you respect, but make a personal choice that the vibes you send isn’t right for my spirit and not interact on a personal level.  However I have no right to dislike you and treat you badly, and then say I am a positive person.  Closing a door to a person who means you ill will doesn’t mean you are wishing them ill will either.  You have a right to protect your spirit.  You don’t have a right to be indirectly or directly mean and bash a person for being who they want to.  So I pray for all of those who is reading this blog, that they would be in a place to deal with hurt but don’t continue to hurt others or tear them down.  You have a responsibility to do the right thing towards even your enemies even when you choose to not interact with what they bring to your life.

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I am practicing these things and I am constantly checking myself so that I don’t respond when it’s not pure in heart.  I trust that even if I get it wrong that I can make it right by just doing what works for me and allowing others to do the same.

The Dirty Mirror

Well good morning.  We are all coming off from either a good Mother’s Day or one we would not rather talk about. It is evident in the posts I saw on social media. However let’s shift our gears a bit to relationships this morning.

You ever found yourself admiring another couple?  You love how they love on each other.  Love is supposed to be inspiring.  However inspiration is only a small part in life. I have found myself really admiring a couple to the point where you forget that people are human and just like you are working stuff out on your end they are too.  So here is the dilemma. How much can you take in for face value?  How much of what appears to come from someone or a relationship can we take as the real?  Up to this point I thought I had the whole premise of admiring from afar down pact but I found out that I may not.

So here I go my emotions all over the place in what I thought another couple was showing me.  So here’s today’s nugget, the grass is never greener on the other side.  Yes water your own but stop looking at the grass altogether.  I have to admit often times when you are looking at someone else, what others have, what you don’t have is because of your own insecurities.  How many times had I argued with my husband on what he doesn’t do when in reality I could do it myself.  Not on the level of I don’t need him but doing it for myself to show what I needed from him or anyone to be honest.  People treat you the way you treat you.  So during this new focus on myself I have changed that about me.  I am not looking at what someone can do for me.  I am not looking at other couple and picking at the parts that I like about them because their struggle to get to what I think I see may be flawed.  That is the lesson that I learned over the weekend.

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I have asked myself before I got married what I wanted.  However I never really explored the actual question past fantasy and whimsical things.  The things that I had set up in my head never went as planned.  Nothing has gone as planned.  I could use that as an out and say well it wasn’t meant to be and there is someone else for me.  The reality is no one knows if there is someone else out there for me.  I am not looking let’s be clear.  I am not taking applications.  I am simply noticing that if I treat my mate the way I want to be treated that if he doesn’t treat me in the same high regard than that alone will be what I will use to determine any changes in my marital status and not because he isn’t doing what another man is doing for his wife for me.  That other man can be showing the world all this love and literally could be going through hell behind the scenes.  Same with the woman.  I am learning to have my own expectations.  I am finding out what I do like and what I don’t like.  How about I am doing all this NOW.  This is something I encourage the ones that are not married to do while single.  This is dangerous to do while married but its better to do than to keep going and lying to yourself.  I am not suggesting that while I am doing this, I am finding that my husband is not measuring up. Right now he and I are fine. We are stronger actually than we have ever been and that speaks volumes.  This is about me.  However some other couples can go through this and find that they are no longer suitable.  Please single people figure this out before you get married.  This will save you some time.

What happens if I get to the end of this and find out that my husband and I don’t mesh, I don’t need to worry about that right now.  I believe we will be fine.  We will be fine because this is an important part of maturity. I would hate to have been such a nag, and prolong this out without knowing myself.  Relationships will change. I used to be upset at the thought but they are supposed to change.  I am not the same as I was when we got married almost 5 years ago and 3 children in.  I am different.  I am expected to change. The work gets harder in love.  Love and lovey dovey feelings aren’t the glue to hold it together. It’s about knowing yourself and working things out inwardly.  It requires faith to believe that love is meant to be.  It’s being okay and not falling apart just because it may not. I am not overly concerned about getting to the end so I can feel as if we are okay.  We are okay and that is all that matters.

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So for the other couples that are finding themselves in this wave, ride it out.  Through the ups and down you will find out that the person you looked starry-eyed at will be there and maybe they won’t.  If you are really doing the work on yourself you will find that if things do end it can be amicable and you can move on without carrying the weight of the what ifs.  You will know in your heart that you loved hard and did what you needed to do.  I am not scared in this process.  Oh and for those looking for cracks in my marriage, there are none. My husband and I talk about this more now than ever before.  I am not looking to get out, this is just how it needs to be.  Is it uncomfortable? In the beginning it was because I kept thinking the worst was going to happen. Not that we were or are going to divorce.  Divorce wasn’t the issue, being miserable in my own skin was. Not because I was unloved but because I needed to set my personal parameter on what respect, love, etc looked like for me.  I thought no one can go through this shift and survive it.  No one can began to question marriage and still be okay.  However life is what it is.  Questioning is not an issue, doing nothing and simply existing is the issue.  I needed to take charge of my love life and I am.  I have had moments where I wanted to talk to my friends about it but I choose not simply because there wasn’t any advice they can give me.  Even my married friends this wasn’t about getting everyone’s opinion. This was about my voice, my issues, handling this OUR way.

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For any couple in this shift, it’s okay. Every fear you have someone else has had.  For every question you ask, someone has asked those same questions.  You can love someone to infinity and beyond, but you have to be able to know you are giving that same love to yourself.  This will either propel your husband or wife to do the same or show you that they aren’t and never was.  Could I honestly say that my husband was doing all he can if I wasn’t?  No and there was the issue it started with me not him.  I don’t have all of the answers but I love that I have someone who sees the shift, embraces the shift, and we are doing our work together and although it seems as if it may being done separately it’s not.

Why I am not being nice to Side Chicks

Today is side chick appreciation day.  This is the day when the memes come out hard.  I heard someone say that we should be nice to a side chick and this is my response to that, hell naw I won’t.  I know that came a bit left but that is my real life rated G version of my response.  Why should anyone feel sorry for a side chick.  Often times side chicks can be side blinded.  The men who side line a side chick really are a piece of work. This means that not only do you not respect your wife or girl but you don’t respect the one you messing with to come correct and at best tell them they are a side chick.

Now the issue with the side chick first let me deal with the man first than I will bring this thing back to full circle.  You have NO game.  Its sad but the reality is that some side chicks will play their “part.”  Yes you can find a raggedy woman who is patiently waiting on the sidelines for any love before she turns up with no love.  This I will address when I swing almost literally to the side chick herself.  If you as a man really had it like that you could tell that side chick that she’s a side chick and she may go for the okie doke.  But often times that side chick is lied to just as much as the lie the man is keeping with his committed girlfriend and wife.  Um let me just say you don’t have enough dick or money to entertain one woman let alone more than one.  Straight like that, no chasers today.  I am not coming from a bitter been burnt by side chick games either but the truth is the truth. So while you may get away with the game of hurting the one you are with you will find out sometimes when it’s too late that it’s not worth it.

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The chances of your woman taking you back is slim or at least it should be.  Ladies I know some men go to counseling and attempt to do better but you better be 1000% sure you can handle that.  The amount of distrust that is done after someone cheats is unimaginable.  If you are the type that brings that back up a million times, you would be better off leaving that cheating man and sending him a clear message that this type of behavior is not acceptable with you than to stay and drag yourself and him through it.  If one of you should go through the ringer shouldn’t it be the one who committed the offense?

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Now to the actual side chick or side dude especially the ones who know.  Why?  Like legitimately why? There isn’t another man who isn’t already connected?  This one that appears like a good catch is the one?  What makes him or her a good catch?  Cheating is a turn on?  He or she won’t do that to you right?  Like for real, what is your motivation.  You are dipping yourself sometimes literally in the same pot.  That doesn’t seem sexy to me. So the nights like Valentine’s Day when a man or woman can’t make a viable excuse for not being home, what do you do?  Hold your pillow tight?  Look at your gifts he had to send to you because he’s not there loving you.  Let me guess, you think he’s not with his wife or her husband?  I know that’s what they told you.  How come he or she hasn’t left their wife or husband?  Your stuff not bomb enough to make him roll?  Oh yeah the kids, yeah that’s called an excuse.  No one should ever stay for the kids.

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Listen if being second to the main is good for you, than you will never have much.  No one cares about your place.  You have none.  Once that wife and husband finds out trust me they are going to make your side boo’s life hell.  Once that happens the spark you once saw won’t be as strong as you think.  They the wife and husband and your boo will blame you. This isn’t anything new that you haven’t heard its just time out for being the sloppy second to another woman or man’s main.  Let people figure their relationships out without being the one sliding in between them.

So not I don’t sorry for a side piece today.  You get what you deserve.

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We got to speak up about the boys club!

So if you follow me on Facebook you know that I recently read an article published by Essence.com regarding Jamal Bryant who is a pastor in Baltimore, Maryland.  He was married at one point and cheated on his wife and as a result of the cheating fathered children outside of his marriage. His wife left him and he almost lost his church.  He made every declaration that he was a changed man.  Then flash forward to now where he is in the midst of yet another scandal where although not married he has fathered another child.  So….where do I begin?

I am fully aware of God’s grace and even though God can do a quick work still on Mr. Bryant the truth of the matter is that I think we more accountability in the house of God.  I know this conversation is going to go left fast.  I have received so much backlash that I decided to write about it today.  I have grown up in the church my whole life.  Being the case, at the end of the day being a Preachers Kid I will not sugar coat where Jamal is right now.  Had this been a woman pastor and she cheated on her husband and had a baby the conversation would have been over.  She would have been sat down, put out the church, and that would have been the end.  Well not in the boys club.  In the boys club men are allowed to not step down from position and continue in the same behavior after everything dies down.  Wow so a man can use the member between his leg to defile his marriage, disrespect God and his call, and continue to use that same member between his legs like nothing happened?  That’s good stuff right there.

The boys club has no place in the world let alone the church.  So we are okay with the man of God who is full of lust to speak over our souls day in and day out.  This same man of God is allowed to tell us where we are wrong and need to get it together or else, right?  Wrong. What I am saying is simple.  Sit him down.  He needs to get in control his desire to have sex.  Let’s keep this real and I mean all the way real, he cheated on his wife and now is fathering a baby out-of-wedlock and he ain’t get that nor the rest of the kids simply by reading the Bible.  No, he got that from having sex to whomever would allow it.  So if he likes sex that’s fine but his desire don’t line up with what the good book says so he needs to either line up with the good book or sit down and wait until he does.  Oh and you know he ain’t lay down with the new baby’s mother one time, that means he was having sex with her and anyonelse but just got caught.  You up to speed now.  That’s how it works. Okay, lesson over.

Bishop Eddie Long is another mega church pastor who used his money and influence on boys and is accused of having sex with them.  We already know from the mere fact that Jamal Bryant is still in position that Long is too.  Who woulda thunk it?  So he’s allowed to be out here doing his thing.  Now it hasn’t come out if he still bending over little boys but end of story there was no accountability.  I’m overly exhausted by this. I just had a friend online get “dragged” for wearing a bathing suit to the beach.  Yes you read that correctly the beach but the same men who came for her were married men with kids who you guessed it are pastors.  Another tidbit openly they drug her for not being saintly but was in her inbox sliding her their number.  You get the point.  We need to stop.  I’m so tired of men getting away with this mess.  Like I said on Facebook it’s not all pastors and its not all men before my male crowd go left.  But if you as a man high-five your boys, sons, cousins etc. for getting it with a woman but want to lock up your precious little girls you are apart of the problem.  You are teaching a double standard. The same men you tell your daughters to avoid you mass produce these same men for them.  Yup the boys club isn’t all chummy when your daughter is crying on your shoulders and you want to get shotguns to handle it. It’s only okay as you sit and slide in in-boxes and emails of women that aren’t your wives for that quick gratification.  It’s only good when you find yourself with a young woman in your bed when you should have been home putting your kids to sleep.  Or wait the boys club is only good when you take on someone else’s kids but you leave yours at home with their mother.  I’ll wait.  Before you get all self righteous you should talk to your daughters but talk to these boys not slide them a condom and tell them the whole world is theirs to conquer.

Sex is good don’t get it twisted but its supposed to be in the right context.  I’m not going to be all holier than thou when 2 of my 3 kids were conceived out-of-wedlock but I also don’t go around telling young mothers that they are worthless or call them hoes like so many of even women who forget their hoe miles don’t have an expiration.  So let’s be clear never throw stones out of a glass house.  The boys club needs to end.  We need to hold all of us on the same lines.  No separate rules for men and then we want to spiritually lock the women up.  Nope.  Any and all pastors male or female who thinks that this backward way of thinking is okay be bold, drop the name of your church so we can all know where not to go. All I am asking is to keep it on the same lines and make these men sit down with the women not the women sit while they have to listen to the same male pastor preach knowing right well at the end of the sermon he going over to sister Watermelon’s for some “fellowship” later.