Miles Davis would probably pour another drink and throw on some jazz after watching Mad at Miles: A Black Woman’s Guide to Truth. After all, this play mentions Davis is a less than flattering light. The dramatic adaptation of the book by Pearl Cleage enlightens the audience to the poor choices Davis made in his relationship with Cicely Tyson and adds so much more. Cleage is mad at Miles and with good reason. The controversial book attempts to bring power to women through self-awareness of their surroundings, their behaviors, their habits. The struggles of women faced with domestic violence and their will to become stronger through connections with other women are at the forefront of this one act play.
Mad at Milesuses various modes to communicate this strong message including dance, oration, humor, and a little singing to boot. The feature play is part of the African American Theatre Program at the University of Louisville and casts six women in the play. The dialect is clear, blunt, and at some points R-rated. The women in this production must take on several roles as the play begins, ‘before the men came’ and runs through time noting the lowest points for women as they succumb to the wants and desires of men. The women examine their responsibility for their position as Cleage writes, “Either we think it’s a crime to hit us, or we don’t. ” This play transcends race as it written and titled to appeal to black women, women of all ethnicities are wise to heed the advice set forth in this production.
Director of Mad at Miles: A Black Woman’s Guide to Truth, and Program Director of The African American Theatre Program, Lundeana Thomas, Ph.D. is an accomplished author and lives for the theatre. Her dedication to the advancement of women, culture, and theatre is readily apparent to her students and contemporaries.
The need to know on the play-The production runs through Sunday, December 4 at The Thrust Theatre on the Belknap Campus. The start times are as follows: 8p nightly with a 3p matinee on December 4. Tickets are$12 for the general public, $10 for faculty and staff, and $8 for students and senior citizens. For tickets and information, call 502-852-6814 or visit louisville.edu/theatrearts/. The production will undeniably bring awareness to both men and women for a nicer tomorrow.