E. Patrick Johnson performs Pouring Tea: Black Gay Men of the South Tell Their Tales
, based upon his book of the same name, today at Rice University. Pouring Tea
is a dramatic reading of some of the oral histories that Johnson collected through interviews with gay black men of various generations, revealing not only the struggles they face but their ability to thrive in an often hostile world. Since hes telling other peoples stories, Johnsons priority with Pouring Tea
is to respect the material. He says, I strive in every performance to find the truth of their experience in the rendering of their story and when I do that in an ethical way, I feel Im doing these stories justice.
As with his previous stage play, Strange Fruit, Johnson examines the question of what it means to be a black person whose racial identity is called into question because of his sexuality, class, gender and religion. While hes made a career out of investigating the rather somber issue of racial authenticity, onstage, Johnson is first and foremost a performer. The audience can expect to be both challenged and entertained. 7 p.m. 6100 Main. For information, call 713-348-2162 or visit www.rice.edu. Free.
Thu., Jan. 27, 7 p.m., 2011