For #TACATuesday, Joanie Schultz, Artistic Director of WaterTower Theatre, talks about the upcoming world premiere of BREAD by Regina Taylor and the importance of new works.
At WaterTower Theatre we believe that one of the most important jobs artists can do is to create new works for our contemporary moment. By the attempt to articulate our unique experiences in this place now, we are fostering desperately needed conversation in the most needed human way, though the live experience of other people. It is our passion for this expression and need to develop artists that create this work that has driven our commitment to world premiere plays, to new and unique productions of established plays, and to our creation of the Detour Festival.
When we at WaterTower Theatre encountered Regina Taylor’s play BREAD, we knew immediately that it must be the first world premiere in this new era of our company. BREAD is a uniquely Dallas play, by a uniquely Dallas artist, who articulates with poetry and insight about the accumulated experience of generations of African-Americans in this community and how it manifests in the here and now. This play speaks to the unique and universal experience of the Baker family, whose lives are in a moment of change, in a neighborhood in a moment of change, in a country in a moment of change. Each character is beautifully rendered and complex as they face the challenges of this upheaval in strikingly layered and different ways.
“This play having its world premiere with the incredible talent of our local artists has breathed authenticity and specificity into the text, which is the perfect collaboration to birth BREAD into the world. This play also gives us the opportunity to create a cross-city conversation, from our home up in Addison, down to Oak Cliff, where the play is set. It’s remarkable how many communities live within the Metroplex, and how far away two places that are so close can feel. We started this conversation in January, with a series of small dinners we called “Breaking Bread,” that gathered groups of artists, leaders, and young people to discuss the future of our community. We hope to see these conversations grow through the run of this incredible play.
Our goal at WaterTower Theatre is to connect Addison to the world and the world to Addison through our theatrical work; we believe that this community has something to express to the rest of the world and we believe that BREAD will go on to do just that.
Artistic Director, WaterTower Theatre
Experience Regina Taylor’s world premiere of BREAD at WaterTower Theatre from April 13 – May 6.