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NYC one-man show in Troy

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Abby Taylor 

Assistant News Editor

The Troy Arts Council has coordinated with Troy University to present the professional New York City production, “Rhapsody in Black,” on Tuesday, Oct. 16.

“This is a very powerful show,” said John Jinright, the event coordinator of the council and an associate professor of music.

There will be student show at 10 a.m. and a public show at 7 p.m., both performed in the Claudia Crosby Theater.

The one-man show, which explores racism in America, was developed at NYC’s Actors Studio and will be performed by LeLand Gantt.

“It’s an auto-biographical journey that LeLand Gantt has turned into a one man play that confronts racism, not only in others, but in himself,” Jinright said.

According to kidsentertainment.net, the play takes a look at Gantt “from an underprivileged childhood in the ghettos …  to teenage experiments with crime and drugs to scholastic achievement and an acting career that lands adult LeLand in situations where he is virtually the only African-American in the room. 

“How he manages to cope with the various psychological effects of consistently being marked The Other is recounted in remarkable and exquisitely moving detail, guaranteed to leave lasting impressions.”

The show is free to students with a student ID.

“The student show is about 60 minutes and it is a toned-down version of the mature audience’s show,” Jinright said. “He tries to save a minute or two for questions at the end.”

“He’s confronting racism in his life and he takes us kind of behind the scenes of what’s going on in his brain as he deals with it and also discovers a lot about himself in the process,” Jinright said.

“The purpose of the play is to give everybody in attendance some tools to confront racism as we encounter it in our own lives,” he said. “Your mind will be expanded. 

“I think that just hearing his point of view is something to very valuable to all of us.”