Harlem Renaissance stage drama 'Blues For An Alabama Sky' tests friendships as the Great Depression closes in

The character of Angel loses her job and her man to another woman before meeting a man from Alabama who is new to Harlem.

News 12 Staff

May 19, 2023, 12:47 AM

Updated 393 days ago

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Friendships are put to the test, the Great Depression closes in and the struggle to survive are all part of a new stage drama in Princeton.
In "Blues For An Alabama Sky," the character of Angel has lost her man to another woman and her job. The nightclub singer is down on her luck just as the Great Depression closes in.
Her best friend, a costume designer named Guy, played by Kevin R. Free, hopes he will be hired by the famous singer Josephine Baker.
Then Angel, played by Crystal Dickinson, meets a man from Alabama who is quite new to Harlem, where "Blues for An Alabama Sky" is set -- and life takes unexpected twists.
The play is set in a very interesting period in American history the Harlem Renaissance. The surge of creativity and feeling is a sense of freedom and also a sense of responsibility.
"There's been this fantastic creative time where you had a lot of benefactors, and now that money is drying up . And we meet my character Angel at a time where jobs are scarce. So what do you do as an artist? How do you survive?" Dickinson says.
And that is what her character confronts -- how far will she go to survive? And how much strain can her relationships take, especially with Guy?
He is willing to put it on the line for her and to risk for a friend.
"We're not harboring any ill will toward each other. Whether we end up together or not as friends, I know that we still love each other," Free says.
"Blues for an Alabama Sky" is being performed at McCarter Theatre in Princeton. Its five characters find themselves divided over issues involving race, sexuality, class and how to best live one's life.
"Blues for an Alabama Sky" is a limited engagement and is scheduled to close at McCarter Theatre on Sunday.


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