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23 Black Pearl Sings Background_V5

Black Pearl Sings!

By Frank Higgins
June 28 - August 06, 2023 Keating Theatre

Black Pearl Sings!

By Frank Higgins
June 28 - August 06, 2023 Keating Theatre

In 1935 Depression-era Texas, two women from very different backgrounds discover the other holds the key to everything they’ve each been searching for. Susannah is an ambitious Library of Congress musicologist, determined to record undocumented slave songs. Pearl is an African American woman with a soulful voice, a steely spirit, and a sentence in a high-security female prison. Pearl’s memory is a treasure-trove of unrecorded slave era music, but can she hand over her ancestors’ songs without giving up something of herself? Black Pearl Sings! tells the evocative story of an unlikely bond, preservation of musical heritage, and the human need for hope and healing.

Running Time

2 hours with a 15-minute intermission


Chicago Tribune


Alice M. Gatling*

Pearl Johnson

Rachel Moulton*



Director | Kate Alexander
Scenic Designers | Isabel & Moriah Curley-Clay
Costume Designer | Nia Safarr Banks
Costume Coordinator  |  Suzie Sajec
Lighting Designer | Ethan Vail
Sound Designer | Louis Vetter Torres
Stage Manager | Roy Johns*
Stage Management Intern  |  Sam Powers

* Member of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.



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