Artsline - Theatre, literature and cultural celebrations fill RVA with story!
May 15, 2023
“I regard the theatre as the greatest of all art forms, the most immediate way in which a human being can share with another the sense of what it is to be a human being.” ~ Oscar Wilde
For the size of our metro area, Richmond offers an unusually wide breadth and depth of theatre. This week is no exception. You will find deeply relational stories on several stages around town. Not only that, but RVA celebrates Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage month with the 25th Annual Asian American Celebration. Plus, visual art, history and music! What a great week to explore local arts & culture!
To list your events on Artsline, go to vpm.org/artsline.=
1. THE LIGHT
Thursdays – Sundays, Through May 27
Firehouse Theatre, 1609 West Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23220
Not every marriage proposal goes as planned. The Light introduces us to Rashad and Genesis on what should be one of the happiest days of their lives, but their joy quickly unravels when ground-shifting accusations from the past resurface in this gripping two-character drama. Can their relationship survive the growing divide between them over who and what to believe? The Light, by Loy A. Webb, is directed by Lucretia Marie, starring Katrinah Carol Lewis & Durron Tyre, and presented by Yes, And! Theatrical Company. Purchase tickets online.
2. THE STILETTOS MONOLOGUES
Saturday, May 20, 7 PM
Sunday, May 21, 3 PM
Lynn Theatre, Brightpoint Community College, 800 Charter Colony Parkway, Midlothian, 23114
The Stilettos Monologues is a modern, episodic play set on the fictional island of St. Iletto (Saint Ill-let-toe) where the iconic stiletto stands metaphorically representing womanhood in all its complexities. Here, sixteen characters – women and female gendered shoes of various ages – tell dramatic and humorous stories on identity, relationships, love, desire, and female empowerment while integrating African American cultural expressions such as jazz, poetry, storytelling, and oratorial traditions of African American sororities. Monologues journey through personal or public conflicts amid revelations of power, scandal, infidelity and more. Purchase tickets online.
Sunday, May 21, 2 PM
Diversity Richmond, 1407 Sherwood Avenue, Richmond, 23220
DRAGSTRAVAGANZA is BACK! This time with a touch of magic, make-believe, and A Whole New World of FUN! Join Diversity Richmond for a magical Drag Storytime and performances hosted by TransJam Events & MC’d by Michelle Livigne!! Enjoy food from Auntie Ning's Food truck and sweet treats from Davvero Gelato, shop at our all-LGBTQ+ makers market, plus enjoy music, a photobooth, crafts, face painting, and more! Be sure to visit with Community Partner He She Ze & We for fun, crafts, and info about how to support LGBTQ+ youth! Purchase tickets online.
4. RACHEL BEANLAND DISCUSSES THE HOUSE IS ON FIRE
Literary Arts, History
Thursday, May 18, 7 PM
Book People, 10464 Ridgefield Parkway, Henrico, 23233
A gripping fictional account of the Richmond Theater Fire, examining the aftermath, the stories that were told and the blame that was unfairly laid on people without the means to defend themselves. RVA local Rachel Beanland is the author of the novel Florence Adler Swims Forever. She is a graduate of the University of South Carolina and earned her MFA in creative writing from Virginia Commonwealth University. Presented by Book People. No registration required for this free event.
5. ART NIGHT
Thursday, May 18, 6 PM
The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen, 2880 Mountain Road, Glen Allen, 23060
Mark your calendar for a fun evening of art! Invite a friend or the whole family - or make it a date night - and join The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen for a special grand opening for four new exhibits! Enjoy a chance to meet the artists behind the exhibits, explore our sculpture garden, and discover items by local makers in the gift shop. Plus, enjoy live music and a wine & beer cash bar that helps support their outreach programs. No registration required for this free event.
6. MAINE MAKERS: VERNACULAR FURNITURE IN THE 18TH CENTURY
History, Visual Art
Thursday, May 18, 6 PM
Wilton House Museum, 15 South Wilton Road, Richmond, 23226
What can mismatched dovetails, errant tool marks, and leftover layout lines tell us about furniture makers across eighteenth century Maine? Snapshots of maker's lives can be glimpsed through close readings of surviving examples of furniture if one knows where to look. Wilton House Museum brings woodworker and furniture scholar Peter Hudson to speak on how examining vernacular furniture can help reconstruct the worlds of eighteenth-century furniture makers. Purchase tickets online.
7. THE 25TH ANNUAL ASIAN AMERICAN CELEBRATION
Culture, Dance, Music, Theatre
Saturday, May 20
Greater Richmond Convention Center, 403 North 3rd Street, Richmond, 23219
The Asian American Society of Central Virginia is excited to present the 25th Annual Asian American Celebration. Learn about and celebrate Asian American communities in Central Virginia through cultural performances, culture booths, hands-on activities, food, and vendors. No registration required for this free event.
8. HOW TO BRUISE GRACEFULLY
Friday & Saturday, May 19 & 20, 7 PM
Gottwald Playhouse, Dominion Energy Center, 600 East Grace Street, Richmond, 23219
For Ages 16+
A young YouTuber, Vi, is hiding something. What begins as a typical workday at Burger King soon spirals into a deep exploration of fear, trauma, and inner strength through the eyes of women who have both nothing and everything to lose. This is a crash course on survival and how to cope with the reality of not being in control of your own body. Content Advisory: How to Bruise Gracefully contains graphic descriptions of medical procedures and adult content. Presented by Cadence Theatre Company. Purchase tickets online.
9. ICA LIVE: PENI CANDRA RINI
Friday, May 19, 7 PM
Institute for Contemporary Art at VCU, 601 West Broad Street, Richmond, 23220
Master Javanese singer and composer Peni Candra Rini performs new and experimental works for voice, electronics, and gamelan in the ICA at VCU’s Royall Forum, in collaboration with Dr. Andy McGraw, Associate Professor and Chair of Music at the University of Richmond, and members of Gamelan Raga Kusuma. In this performance, Peni uses both traditional and experimental music and theater to present a modern interpretation of the myth of ocean goddess Nyai Rara Kidul, who embodies the contradictions of feminine power: through their love women bring life into the universe, through their anger they can act like a gateway to hell, devouring. Reserve a spot for this free event.
10. AFRICAN AMERICAN CEMETERY SYMPOSIUM
Saturday, May 20
Stratford Hall, 483 Great House Road, Stratford, 22558
Join Stratford Hall for a symposium on memorializing burial grounds of enslaved Africans and African Americans at plantation sites. Keynote Speaker is Dr. Michael Blakey, National Endowment for the Humanities Professor at the College of William and Mary, Anthropology and American Studies. Lunch will be provided and pre-registration is requested. The Symposium is part of a weekend of programming which also includes From the Field to Big House. Purchase tickets online.
If you are an arts or cultural organization with lectures, exhibitions, performances, or even book readings, submit your events to Artsline here.
If you are an artist or an arts or cultural organization in need of resources and tools, check out the list of local and national resources from Richmond CultureWorks.
Cadence Theatre Company, The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen, and The ICA at VCU are sponsors of VPM.