Nick’s Flamingo Grill
through October 28, 2018
This world premiere of Phillip DePoy’s latest work is lighting up the Hertz Stage at Woodruff Center. The playwright has had an astounding career with dozens of books and plays, and is well known and respected in our community. In this work he goes back decades to the days when hotels, clubs, restaurants and so much more were still being segregated. He recalls a club that may, or may not, have actually existed where black and white folks met, and jazz ruled.
Directed by Tinashe Kajese-Bolden, the stage has been turned into a trashy old factory facility that is being transformed into a jazz club by two former GIs who want to follow the beat and the sound. Nick (Cordell Cole) and Bechet (Antwayn Hopper) are from different backgrounds. They had been playing in clubs in Paris, and feel it is time for Atlanta.
They’re joined by a French former resistence fighter, Claudine (Shakirah Demesier) and the Cubana, Chi-Chi Lopez (Diany Rodriguez). The property owner is Harold Napier (Robin Bloodworth) and they get visited by a record producer, John Hammond (Daniel Triandiflou).
The stage is set as if you are in that old place, with doors that open, and problems that exist. It starts just after WWII, when explosive devices left by the Wehrmacht might still be around, and care and concern were everywhere. And, as the time line comes up to the 1950’s and to today we are compelled to think about not only how far we may have come in our fights for equality; but how much more we have to go to reach the desired results.
A very well done production, especially for those of us of a certain age. More info at AllianceTheatre.org