FORT GREENE, Brooklyn (PIX11) — Theatre can be a platform for dialogue and social change.
That’s the premise of a new and young theatre troupe rehearsing in Brooklyn, preparing for opening night in three weeks. It is a Brooklyn-based organization called Girl Be Heard, which celebrates the voices of young women of color.
Twice a week for the last nine months, the troupe of young women of color, ranging in age from 15 to 21, has been rehearsing at the Mark Morris Dance Studio. They tackle social justice and activism issues through socially conscious theater, storytelling and performance.
“Girl Be Heard is an organization that supports and holds up young ladies that are very creative and want to use their voices as artivists,” Dr. Angela Fatou Gittens, artistic director of Girl Be Heard, told PIX11 News.
At their rehearsal Wednesday night, the young women were learning words and songs of protest from the Soweto movement, including The National Anthem of South Africa.
“I love learning about history, and all the conflicts that have been happening and the reason we’re a society today,” Bree Webster, 18, told PIX11 News. “This group alone has taught me a lot.”
The performers are hoping to bring some topics that are important to them to the stage, and that’s why they like the term that they call themselves artivists, combining activist and artist.
“I never had the opportunity to speak out in performance with art,” Fiona Grand, 16, told PIX11 News. “Girl Be Heard is the perfect platform for me to speak out with art.”
The rehearsals are for performances of “Organize: Take to the Streets!” on May 23 and 24 at Symphony Space Leonard Nimoy Thalia Theater. Tickets start at $10 and are available at girlbeheard.org/mainstage2023.