“In the play RED VELVET, pandemonium erupts when American actor,
Ira Aldridge, arrives at a prestigious English theatre to play the title role in Shakespeare’s play, Othello. For the eloquent and passionate Aldridge is a black man, something unheard of on London stages in 1833, even in the role of Shakespeare’s doomed Moor. RED VELVET examines what happens when a courageous few dare to challenge the status quo, how intractable opinions and feelings can be, and how hard it is to bring about change.
Director Benjamin Pohlmeier says, “Resistance to diversity is rooted in the fear of change; a fear of accepting a constantly evolving world, because it will mean the loss of privilege. Privilege, conversely, translates into influence, and, if ruthlessly executed, it will slow the match of progress to a desperate crawl. A play not only about race,
RED VELVET shows how in the face of adversity, passion and persistence inevitably build the kind of pressure necessary to bring about change, but it also tallies-up the costs of losing battles we dare to fight.”
Playwright Lolita Chakrabarti’s play, RED VELVET has been critically acclaimed in numerous productions in London, as well as in New York. Lolita Chakrabarti said, “The acknowledgement of Ira Aldridge and his extraordinary achievements has been so gratifying. Now I feel he stands with Kean, Tree, Garrick, Kemble and Macready to name just a few. For me, that changes everything.”
The cast of 10 of this West Coast Premiere of the play is led by actor
Paul Outlaw (of Silver Lake) as Ira Aldridge/Othello, and includes: Nicola Bertram (Silver Lake) as Ellen Tree/Desdemona; Colin Campbell (of Los Feliz) as
Pierre Laporte; Adam Chacon (of Monterey Park) as Terence/Bernard Warde;
Amanda Charney (of Hancock Park) as Betty Lovell; Sean C Dwyer (of Hollywood) as Casimir/Henry Forrester/Cassio; Kailena Mai (of Silver Lake) as Halina Wozniak;
Erin Elizabeth Reed (of Silver Lake) as Margaret Aldridge; Dee Dee Stephens (of Los Angeles) as Connie and Ben Warner (North Hollywood) as Charles Kean/Iago.
The play’s production team includes: Benjamin Pohlmeier (of Echo Park) Director/Producer, Artistic Director, The Junction Theatre; Dee Dee Stephens (of Los Angeles) Associate Producer/Community Outreach; Jerry Blackburn (of Porter Ranch) Stage Manager; Kiley Hanon (of Silver Lake) Scenic Artist; Douglas Gabrielle (of Silver Lake) Lighting Designer/Technical Director; James Ferrero (of North Hollywood) Sound Designer; Kristina Moore (of Monterey Park) Costume Designer; Rameel Raymundo (of Los Feliz) Postcard Design; Ed Krieger (of La Crescenta) Production Photographer and Steve Moyer Public Relations (of Los Angeles) Press Representative.”
-Steve Moyer Public Relations