My first and last theater experience was in the second grade, and I played a deer. I drew a deer on a shirt, cut it so that it had an inexplicable fringe, and tried my darndest to give off deer vibes on stage. I can’t really remember anything else, but needless to say, the stage has never been my calling. I have never been a part of a theater community, which to me always seemed like groups of people with loud voices and expressive eyebrows, and who somehow aren’t mortified at the thought of standing on a stage in front of hundreds of people—and none of these are things I can relate to. I also had never read any playwrights of color until I got to college and actively sought them out, which is awful. Why had I read no fewer than 10 Shakespeare plays and yet none of Lorraine Hansberry’s? Luckily, Black Theater Ensemble and last semester’s women-of-color production of The Vagina Monologues opened my eyes to a wealth of nonwhite artists, making campus theater relatable, welcoming, and even uplifting.
In this week’s lead story, which is debuted on a snazzy new longform format which we are thrilled to introduce, AJ Stoughton analyzes just where we’re at in terms of relations between race and campus theater. From yellowface in Top Girls, to unfounded criticisms launched at the last production of The Vagina Monologues, to an unsurprisingly white and heterosexual Annual Varsity Show, there are certainly serious issues that need to be addressed before we can really call campus theater inclusive. Also in this issue: a gorgeous photo essay from this weekend’s People’s Climate March, 20/20s grappling with Danny’s striptease on The Mindy Project, and the personalities of student groups described through emojis. Most importantly, though, make sure you scroll up and down our lead story’s web page a few times. It’s that good.