Set in present day 2013, the play explores the influence Western perceptions of beauty have on us, black women. Through whose 'eyes' do we view ourselves and assess our beauty? In particular, the play explores issues around black women and our relationship with their hair.
The performance opens with a 'DEAR WHITE GIRL' sketch telling the 'white girl' that the world loves her and was made for her. Through a series of monologues messages are conveyed from women with hairstyles ranging from weaves, dreadlocks, 'Bal-ed' and the natural curls of the ‘Halfbreed’.
The play pulled no punches and I found the themes very easy to relate to. There were occasional utterances of, ‘Uh-huh’ and ‘Yes’ from the mainly black female audience. And despite the serious political, psychological and social issues raised through the sketches, there was still room for giggles and laughter. (Although at times I wondered if some of the latter was due to a touch of painful or awkward truth.)
For me the real success of Crowning Glory is bringing into the public arena some of the hidden and unspoken messages we are given as black women about our hair. These messages probably start as early as infancy, from our families, the media and society in general.
I was so affected by the performance that I was inspired to write a short piece: 'He Said...', which you can find in the 'Other Writing' link on my website.
Going to see the performance is an ideal night out and an education for women and men of all ages - whatever your nationality. One thing's for sure, it will get you talking!
The play closes at the Theatre Royal is on Sat 9th November 2013. So hurry along, if you can. You won't regret it.