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NPR’s All Things Considered profiles the America: Here and Now project and its premiere in Kansas City.  Great audio excerpts from Public Space by Zayd Dohrn featuring Chioma Anyanwu and Coleman Crenshaw (follow the link below).

‘Taking The Temperature Of America’

All of the work is loosely organized and curated by the artists themselves. Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Marsha Norman contributed to the program’s theater lineup.

“Instantly the idea was in my mind that what we should do would be a series of dialogues meant to be overheard,” Norman says.

Her peers, including Edward Albee and Tina Howe, created short, conversational works.

In Zayd Dohrn’s Public Space, an apparently homeless man draped in a blanket walks through the gallery and curls up under a painting. He’s quickly approached by a docent, who tells him he can’t sleep there — the gallery is a place for art.

“Everyone understood that they were kind of doing a verbal sampling of American life,” Norman explains. “It clearly wasn’t about them; it was about taking the temperature of America emotionally, in an instant, in a gallery.”

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