Say It Ain’t So
September 30-October 4
Pay What You Can
In an effort to lift our understanding of the world as it exists to meet the classical texts with newfound fire, Revolution Shakespeare presents the newly commissioned work “Say It Ain’t So” by Nikki Brake-Sillá. This play will be presented in a workshop capacity for Fringe 2021 — staged (virtual) reading, minimal costume, in flux script — to allow the playwright and artistic team freedom to explore the work and allow a window into the process.
“Say It Ain’t So”, while in conversation with Shakespeare’s “Macbeth” should be considered its own individual work — not in reference to, not in service towards the 400+-year-old Bard. As Nikki says in her synopsis, “the play asks — What do we inherit? What past should we not pass on? Can cycles really be broken?” View this experience with these queries — if Shakespeare is just the trampoline, where do we land? And how can we land together?
“What I love about Brake-Sillá’s work is that it keenly invites audiences to ask questions, whether about themselves, the characters, or culture as we know it. Her work gives my brain the best tingles. And this collab has allowed me to ask even more questions as RevShakes shifts from its traditional performances of yore,” said Tai Verley, Artistic Director of Revolution Shakespeare. “As a Black woman who loves classical texts, yet has always hated the gate-kept experience — whether as an actor, producer, director — I always wanted to see myself in the work. Nikki has achieved that, and then some.”
Working with ASL interpreters, a new script, and a Black artistic team, “Say It Ain’t So” weaves the tale of Sandra, an affluent Black mother on the lam with her Deaf sister, Renny… AND ushers in a new approach for Revolution Shakespeare — one filled with new voices, perspectives, and profound connection beyond the normalcy of supremacy.
Available for streaming Wednesday, Sept 30 until end of Festival
Playwright: Nikki Brake-Sillá
Director: Michelle Banks
ASL Interpretation done by: TBA
Stage Managers: TBA
About the Artists
Revolution Shakespeare (RevShakes for short), helmed by Tai Verley (Artistic Director), Daniel Kontz (Art Direction/Marketing), and Abby Weissman (Education/Artistic Associate), hopes to empower every audience in Philadelphia – and beyond! – to question and reflect on Shakespeare’s relevance through adaptations of the original works. RevShakes’ work focuses on the use of collaborative mediums meant to foster new connections to the classical text, themes, and characters.