African Community Theater director looks forward to auditions for musical

Akilah Porter

After a year of planning, the African Community Theater is ready to hold auditions for the musical “Stagolee.”

Francis Dorsey, associate professor of Pan-African Studies, said he is excited for his first play of the season.

“I’m just ready, y’all,” Dorsey said. “I’m ready and I just can’t wait to do it.”

Auditions for “Stagolee” are September 29 and 30 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. in room 230 of Oscar Ritchie Hall.

Every semester, Dorsey, director of the African Community Theater, puts on a play written by a black play writer. The plays tend to highlight the African-American culture. This year’s performance is a 13-person musical ensemble titled “Stagolee.”

“Stagolee” is about a strong African-American man who travels throughout different historical time periods from the Garden of Eden to the civil rights movement.

Dorsey said the character symbolizes the black man’s presence during many moments in history.

“We’ve always had these strong, black characters throughout history,” he said.

Wendy Wilson-Fall, associate professor and chair of the Pan-African Studies Department, said “Stagolee” is a production that holds importance in the discussion of black history.

“‘Stagolee’ is a real black classic,” she said.

She said she believes it is crucial for a play such as “Stagolee” to be preserved.

“There are certain classics that we have to embrace,” Wilson-Fall said. “If we don’t embrace them, then they will disappear.”

Daejah Alexander-Irby, sophomore anthropology major, said although she doesn’t act, she still wants to support African Community Theater through a production role.

“I’m not an actor, so it gives me comfort that I don’t have to play such a serious role,” Alexander-Irby said.

Contact Akilah Porter at [email protected].