A Rosa Parks Musical in the Works? Wow. Now that is a sight to see. It almost sounds too good to be true on account of all the colorless productions to date. But, in a positive light, we are moving closer to coloring in the lines that confine diversity in creative spaces.
It is an honor to announce that the triumphant story of Rosa Parks (the mother of the U.S. Civil Rights Movement), is now in early workshop stages. The musical production, Rosa, will appear in the UK under the direction of Matt Ryan and Tom Brady (Musical Director), written by Victoria Gimby (book and lyrics), and with music by Stuart Matthew Price, and Simbi Akande as “Rosa.” The production will begin with Rosa’s life as a seamstress and will continue on to show how she repelled with refusing to give up her seat to a white passenger. The play will highlight the segregated bus rules in the 1950s Montgomery, Alabama era just before the Montgomery Bus Boycott.
With Rosa Parks’ passing (2005), and the heat of the nation’s top headlines, I think this production is necessary. Rosa Parks encompasses fortitude and resembles the fearlessness that we need in our current state. As she sought to achieve nothing short of equality, we remember her legacy and continue the fight for justice on and off stage. We look forward to an unforgettable, true, and victorious display of the Civil Rights Movement.
For more information on Rosa, click here.
Note: It is important that we acknowledge every major player on the creative team (director, book and lyrics, music) is white. It will be interesting to see how that impacts authenticity and nuance.