I Shall Be Released - Marion Williams
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Shirley Chisholm, Robert E. Lee, & Me

2019

Written by Ashley Christopher Leach

Directed by J. Andrew McNeal

Starring Ashley Christopher Leach

Produced by Laura Klein

*Premiered at the Tenth Annual Dream Up Festival at Theater for the New City

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As one statue goes up, another comes down.  As the political and social divide in America grows increasingly untenable, Ashley Christopher Leach invents a new humanistic approach at viewing seemingly contradictory, historic American figures.  By sharing aspects of both Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm’s life as well as the life of Confederate General Robert E. Lee, Leach seeks to demonstrate how both individuals transcended the constraints of their time and made unpopular decisions that spoke to their humanity rather than the contemporary ideologies they commonly represent.  Relating their stories with his own life, Leach celebrates the unpopular choices each of these Americans made and reinterprets how each of them should be viewed.  Shirley Chisholm, Robert E. Lee, & Me urges Americans to seek commonalities, even amongst the most unlikely characters, in hopes of healing an already mercurial political climate.

Official Selection of the 2021 ONE Festival

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