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Revolution Club Checks Out
Romeo and Juliet

Updated September 4, 2017 | Revolution Newspaper |


September 4, 2017:

“My first Shakespearean play—I loved it!”

The Romeo and Juliet play was amazing; I couldn’t stop smiling and thinking about it afterwards! I absolutely loved it!

When I heard about the plans to watch a Shakespearean play, I shrugged. I never understood Shakespeare’s writings. I was always glad to have dodged this class in high school because I perceived it as boring and hard. I saw this subject as being only for “smart” people—not for me! There was always a feeling of shame when people spoke about Shakespeare because I never read anything of him. I also had a negative perception of musicals, plays, and museums as being tedious. Growing up, I was not introduced to arts and culture—not even a trip to the public library! The only culture I was bombarded with was television and radio.

However, after recognizing that human beings cannot live simply on “bread” alone, and because we are fighting for a different world with a different approach to art and culture, there was a need to attend this play. But as soon as the play began, I was captivated! I was glued to the characters from beginning to end. I was left wanting more and had a huge smile for the rest of the day. I still think of the play and wish to see it again. I didn’t understand some of the terminology used but was able to follow the story. It was a wonderful experience! This was definitely much better than the Romeo and Juliet Hollywood movie.

This experience made me think of the world we are fighting for. “The sphere of art and culture responds to a profound need of human beings, who indeed cannot live simply by ‘bread’ (the basic material requirements of life) alone,” as written in the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America by Bob Avakian. There are many people among the oppressed who have never left their community and hung out at cafes, visited a museum, or seen a play.

The Constitution continues, “In the sphere of art and culture as a whole, the objective of the government ... is to meet the intellectual and cultural needs and serve the largest interests of the masses of people, to foster and support the all-around development of people throughout society, and to contribute to the development of people throughout the world, whose imagination, creativity, initiative, talents and abilities, are inspired and unleashed to bring into being new relations among people, and a new world in which human beings can flourish in ways and in dimensions never before imagined, in a spirit and in bonds of cooperation....” This is the world we fight for. This is the world Bob Avakian, leader of the revolution, leads to bring into being. This is the world we all should strive for.

August 14, 2017:

“It Was Crazy Watching Some Similar Beefs and Banter...”

Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet is playing in parks all across Chicago. A tale most attributed and alluded to love is in fact one of his great tragedies, with a heavy view on the cycle of retaliation and revenge and how it permeates into every aspect of people’s lives. The Revolution Club went to a performance on the South Side to watch and experience the play, and to meet and talk with people coming to see it. A warning before the play started told the audience that it was going to be in its original language of old English, but encouraged people to not get perplexed but fight through in context. Afterwards in talking to some of the actors and people running the event, they reflected on some initial hesitance to doing a tragedy, but found it powerful to do this play in the parks across the city and, yes, right in the middle of communities torn by similar revenge that kills people not too different than the characters in the play.

About a hundred people watched the play, with a mix of people you don’t always see in this segregated city, white and Black people, university students, families, people from the neighborhood and from the suburbs. Some were being introduced to the play for the first time and some were die-hard Shakespeare enthusiasts. It was crazy watching some similar beefs and banter as well as longing of characters within the play and being in the neighborhoods with people caught up in the same bullshit in another outmoded system. It was a great performance and we all were into it, as was the audience in general.




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