BSU Show Preview

Eleanor Walsh ’21 and Allison Barker ’21

On Feb. 7, the Black Student Union (BSU) will put on their annual production for the Upper School. The show, which takes place during Black History Month, is meant to raise community awareness about the experiences of African American students in and outside of the school.

According to Equity, Justice and Community Director Hayes Davis, the performance is “the students’ show,” and students have been preparing since October. He “hopes the show says what the students want to say,” as it is their experiences, hardships, and victories being shared on the stage. This characterizes the powerful performance that BSU show offers every year.

This year’s show will follow the themes of struggles and triumphs, as well as justice and love. Senior Michael Adeyi, one of the heads of the BSU, said, “Because we are trying to get a message across, the show can be really negative sometimes… We are talking about a lot of struggles, so we wanted to incorporate a lot of dances and performances this year to make it a little more uplifting...  but it’s still deep and meant to resonate with people.”

On what the group wants the community to take away from the show, Adeyi said, “What we really want to emphasize about this show is that it isn’t something that you can just watch and nod your head at, and then go home and ignore. But at the same time, we want to emphasize that not all we have to talk about is our struggles. There are positive aspects of black culture and of our lives, and we are not just engulfed by some perennial struggle.” 

Additionally, this year’s show will be more directed at the Sidwell Friends community rather than the general “you” that it has focused on in the past. 

When asked about the differences in this year’s show, Davis said, “Every year’s a little bit different, every year’s a little bit the same. You’re always going to have students talking about what it’s like to be black at Sidwell Friends, and you always have students talking about what it’s like to be black in the world. What particular shape that takes, what particular medium that’s through – song, poem, monologue – that’s a little bit different every year, and that’s part of what’s great about the show, that it’s really shaped by the students who are part of this production.”

As we approach Feb. 7, the cast members are bringing the last pieces of the show together while the rest of the community looks forwards to the annual performance. 


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