Thursday, April 29, 2021

Play a Day: Fremont Junior High is NOT Doing “Oklahoma”!

Paul Michael Thomson
For Thursday, I read Fremont Junior High is NOT Doing “Oklahoma”! by Paul Michael Thomson and posted at New Play Exchange.

“A lot of classics are racist. And sexist. Or even homophobic! That doesn’t mean we stop doing them. We just take the good with the bad and maybe, you know, make a comment about it or something.”

And here we are.

The drama coach at Fremont Junior High has chosen Oklahoma for that year’s musical, and in a short period of time those dedicated, fourteen year-old students who will compose the company have broken into factions which reflect the current moment in national theater: do we produce a problematic yet popular American musical featuring a diverse cast, which may serve to undermine the worser aspects of the work and provide visibility and advantage to BIPOC these performers OR create a new, so-called divised play reflecting Gen Z anxiety and concerns which may not actually be good and no one’s going to want to see but at least it’s not fucking Oklahoma?

This play is so funny, even Thomson’s stage directions are hilarious.

Who should I read tomorrow?

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