By UNIVERSES (Steven Sapp, Mildred Ruiz-Sapp, and William Ruiz, aka Ninja)
Developed and directed by Liesl Tommy
Limited Season · Thrust Stage
October 17–November 16, 2014
Get ready for a hyperkinetic mix of live video, hip hop, jazz, rock, gospel, blues, Latin rhythms, and spoken word as the explosive theatre ensemble UNIVERSES rocks and unlocks the radical and complicated legacy of the Black Panthers and Young Lords. These seminal activists fought injustice, provided free food and medical care for their communities—and struggled against a government determined to suppress them. Based on dozens of interviews, Party People imagines the Black Panthers and Young Lords reuniting today at an art opening curated by a couple of young counterculturists, where old wounds open and generations collide. What is the price of being a revolutionary, and what happens to those who come after?
Party People was developed in The Ground Floor, Berkeley Rep’s Center for the Creation and Development of New Work.
We expect this show to include one 15-minute intermission. We’ll update this information, and add running time, once we have confirmation.
Berkeley Rep offers an advisory about any stage effect of potential concern to patrons’ health. We will post this information as soon as it’s available. We don’t offer advisories about subject matter, as sensitivities vary from person to person. If you have any concerns about content, please contact the box office.
“A dazzling creation by the New York-based theatre collective known as UNIVERSES…Party People is an artful mixture of spoken poetry, hip-hop theatre, blues, jazz, gospel and rap. Mesmerizing monologues punctuate this well-balanced theatrical potpourri.”—KLCC Radio Eugene
“High-energy, vibrant, roller coaster ride—via dialogue, monologue, poetry, music and dance—of the rise and fall of the Black Panther Party and the Young Lords, two minority-based revolutionary groups of the 1960s and 1970s.”—Ashland Daily Tidings
Introducing Party People
Michael Leibert Artistic Director Tony Taccone introduces us to the explosive theatre ensemble UNIVERSES and their new show.
Docent talks and discussions
Pre-show docent talks
Meet us in the Theatre an hour before the show on Tuesdays and Thursdays for an engrossing presentation about your subscription-season play. Hear about the playwright’s perspective, dive into the historical context, and discover why the script is relevant right now. Each 30-minute talk includes plenty of time for your questions.
Post-show docent-led discussions
Join your fellow audience members after all matinees and share your thoughts on the show.
Our docents also offer talks off-site
- Monday, October 20 · 6:30pm—Berkeley Public Library
- Wednesday, October 22 · 2pm—Moraga Library
Page to Stage
Every season, Berkeley Rep hosts Page to Stage, a series of free discussions with eminent theatre artists, designed to give audiences additional insight into the plays and playwrights produced at Berkeley Rep. Past programs have featured theatre luminaries such as David Edgar, Sarah Jones, Tony Kushner, Delroy Lindo, Donald Margulies, Terrence McNally, Charles Mee, Rita Moreno, Salman Rushdie, and the Chicano performance trio Culture Clash.
- Monday, October 6, 2014
A discussion with UNIVERSES, moderated by Berkeley Rep’s Madeleine Oldham
Each talk starts at 7pm and runs about 60 minutes. No tickets are necessary for these free events, but seating is limited. The lobby opens at 6pm, and doors to the Theatre open at 6:30pm for general admission seating. Berkeley Rep donors at the Friend level or higher ($75+) enjoy reserved seating. For more information about Page to Stage or how to become a donor, call 510 647–2906.
Teen Night gives local teens the opportunity to meet for dinner and a behind-the-scenes discussion with a member of the artistic team before attending each subscription-season production at an extremely discounted price.
- Friday, October 17, 2014
Past Teen Night guests have included: Tony Taccone, Berkeley Rep’s Michael Leibert Artistic Director; Ray Garcia and Salvatore Vassallo, dancers in Rita Moreno: Life Without Makeup; and Michael Suenkel, Berkeley Rep’s production stage manager.
Cap off your night with us after select evening performances throughout the season and sample wine, spirits, and other culinary delights from local vendors—all for FREE! Samplings begin immediately following the performance.
- Saturday, October 18, 2014
Stick around after select performances for lively Q&A sessions with our artists on Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday nights.
- Friday, October 31, 2014
- Tuesday, November 4, 2014
- Thursday, November 13, 2014
Talkback with UNIVERSES
In addition to the docent events and post-show discussions listed on this page, UNIVERSES will be hosting talkbacks after the evening performances on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays.