By Yasmine Laasraoui
The Logan Center Performance Hall, 915 E. 60th St. will be presenting “Word Becomes Flesh” at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 6.
“Word Becomes Flesh” is written and directed by Marc Bamuthi Joseph, a New York City native and current director of performing arts at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, Calif. Joseph’s third play will fuse together spoken word, contemporary dance and live music.
The performance focuses on themes including fatherhood, race and gender in America and explores contemporary Black identity. The play was originally conceived through a series of letters read from a father to his unborn son, “about what kind of father [Joseph] wanted to be, and the state of the world he was bringing his son into,” explains Mitch Marr, marketing manager at the Logan Center.
“Word Becomes Flesh” was first performed as a solo piece in New York City, and later toured around the world. Next week’s performance will include an ensemble cast of six.
Included in the cast is Khalil Anthony, born and raised in the Chicago area. Anthony describes the play as having several universal qualities and said, “a lot of people can find an entryway” into the piece. Raised by a single mother, Anthony uses his role in the play as a father during pregnancy to better understand his own father. The dilemmas presented are “really honest” and allow the audience to become “immediately involved,” he said.
Joseph highlighted the play’s relevance to current politics, saying there is “so much national discourse on the humanity and justice surrounding young Black males today,” and that he aims to promote these issues through his play.
The public performance will serve as a kick-off to the Brave New Voices International Youth Poetry Slam Festival, Aug. 7 to Aug. 11.
Proceeds will go to Brave New Voices, a national organization that provides safe environments for youth, encouraging the use of voice in creating societal change.
Admission is $25 and $15 for those under 21 with I.D.