Encore Michigan

Podcast: Ashley Lyle and Dan Johnson talk to David Kiley about racism in Michigan Theatre

podcast July 17, 2020

DEARBORN, Mich.–EncoreMichigan editor-in-chief David Kiley spoke with BLAQN (Black Literature and Arts Queens Network) founder Ashley Lyle and actor and BLAQN associate Dan Johnson for a talk about their decision recently to start the public conversation about racism in Michigan theatre and ask his own questions about their experiences with racism in the community.

Ashley Lyle

“If there is anything we should take away from the national and global discussions about racism is that we all need to take a breath and look at everything we are doing anew, with fresh eyes and a fresh mind and fresh heart,” said Kiley. “That means us, too, at EncoreMichigan, because we have not spent enough time and and energy covering black and brown theatre companies, and we have not spent any space writing on the racism issue until BLAQN teed it up last month,” said Kiley.

Dan Johnson (right) in Miss Bennet at Open Book Theatre

In this discussion, Lyle and Johnson talk to Kiley about color conscious casting, race transcendent casting, micro-aggressions in a production, re-thinking casting options with revivals as well as new plays, business decisions that theatre companies make that are part of systemic racism. It is a lively and robust conversation.

Push the play button below on your computer or on your phone.

Week of 8/10/2020

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