Ars Nova & Lightning Rod Special: “Underground Railroad Game”
presented with the Williams Program in Teaching: “Transforming the Narrative of Race in the Classroom.” How can we create a climate of inclusion and bold engagement in the classroom during sensitive conversations about identity and racism?
Created by Jennifer Kidwell & Scott R. Sheppard, Directed by Taibi Mager
Named one of the top ten theatre experiences of 2016 by the New York Times, Underground Railroad Game is a vivid, piercing piece of experimental performance from Philadelphia-based company Lightning Rod Special. Over its rapid-fire 75 minutes, the piece toes the line between sketch comedy show and excruciating American history lesson, set in a middle school classroom.
Lightning Rod Special’s raucous performance earned them the 2017 Obie Award for Best New American Theatre Work, one of the highest honors in the field. By tearing down barriers of political correctness and challenging the contemporary liberal interracial dialogue, Underground Railroad excavates hidden—and often ugly—truths about race, identity, and historical memory.
This performance is made possible by the W. Ford Schumann ’50 Endowment for the Arts and the Lipp Family Fund for Performing Artists.