on April 29, 2014
Richmond teenagers called on their audience to reexamine characters they usually overlook in “Po’Boys Kitchen,” the latest production by RAW Talent, an after-school poetry troupe drawn from different schools in the city. These teenagers, coming out of the fabric of Richmond, once again produced innovative work.
RAW Talent’s first play was a Richmond adaptation of Romeo & Juliet, dealing with gang culture. Their latest production, staged in February and March, also deals with some heavy realities in the lives of local characters on the street. The teenage actors range from 13 year-old students to staff members in their 20s, and they address themes like homelessness, prostitution and drugs.
But this time, the frame through which the audience viewed the action was the African American-owned cornerstore as a place for acceptance and redemption for a cast of overlooked characters who are, in the words of one 16-year-old actress, struggling to break free of stereotypes.
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