Art Race Matters Uncategorized

One-Man Show: How Blak Kin Eye Bee?

The 90-minute, one-man show, How Blak Kin Eye Be?, has jeff obafemi carr (lower case only please) lifting the veil on the African American family at Nashville’s Belcourt Theatre this week.

Spelling his name without capitalization as a sign of humility, carr explains the misspelling of his play’s title as: “‘Kin’ is spelled that way because we are all in some ways related. . . . ‘I’ is spelled ‘Eye’ because it’s an insightful look into the spirits and souls of many African-American people. . . . and ‘Bee’ has the double ‘e’ spelling because a bee creates honey that’s sweet, that provides nutrients to us, but it’s also something that stings. There’s some stinging commentary, some stinging critique inside the (African-American) family.”

First performed in 2001 at Fisk University, carr earned rave reviews for his hilarious and touching exploration into what it means to be African American in a changing world. His seven characters run the gamut of stereotypes: Senseneb, an ancient father of secrets; Jesse D. Blues, the blues man; Big Mama, the grandmother; The Head Doctor, a barber who “provides young men with their education about what it is to be a black man in America.”; Black Act-Tore, who represents the conflicts African American artists face; and Pass-Tah, a wayward man of God.

Besides juggling characters on stage, carr’s resume includes activist, ordained Baptist minister, radio and TV commentator, journalist, publisher, producer and jazz vocalist.

“I’ve learned that building in life is a step-by-step process,” he said. “That’s what I’m trying to do here, build an artistic life step by step that will contribute something long-term.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *