The Grown Folks Tour seeks to engage audiences through spoken word and theater by featuring two solo plays that explore and examine what it means to grow up, love and become yourself.
She Think She Grown by Shannon Matesky is a journey of learning how to grow up without getting ahead of yourself. Exploring the idea that turning 18 makes you an adult Shannon gives her personal experiences as a young woman and the wake-up calls that help her realize that she is not yet "grown" at all. Shannon confesses to her audience that being "grown" is much more complicated than just being legal. Shannon urges young adults to take their time to grow up and to appreciate their young adult years in this powerful one-woman show.
For Those Who Pray in Closets by Danez Smith is a one-man theatre production about Isaiah, a 22-year old man who by day is a quiet church boy and by night is a budding drag princess trying to hide his relationship with the pastor's son. Isaiah tries to dance his way around without his two lives meeting but Isaiah finds himself at a standstill, having to choose between his religion and sexuality, his God and his lover, his saint and his sin. For Those Who Pray in Closets uses Isaiah to explore questions of balance, of whether God and Queer can exist in the same body, to explore what can happen when a person is forced to choose, and asks the question: Why do I have to pick?
Shannon Matesky has been seen on numerous stages across the country as a poet and actress. Some of her theatrical credits include: How Long Will I Cry? (Steppenwolf Theatre), The March (Steppenwolf Theatre Company); Hit the Wall (The Inconvenience, Steppenwolf Garage Rep); Sophocles: Seven Sicknesses (The Hypocrites); and Sonnets for an Old Century (UrbanTheater Company, Steppenwolf Garage Rep). Shannon was a featured spoken word artist of the Brave New Voices College Tour and the final season of HBO's Def Poetry Jam. She has performed with the likes of Talib Kweli, Marc Bamuthi Joseph, Danny Hoch, Rachel McKibbens, George Watsky, Rafael Casal and countless others. She is featured in the award-winning documentary 2nd Verse: The Rebirth of Poetry(Corduroy Media). Shannon is an activist and teacher who has worked with such organizations as Young Chicago Authors, Youth Speaks, Step-Up Women's Network, Kuumba Lynx and others, aiding young adults in technical and life skills. She Think She Grown is her first solo play. shannonmatesky.com
Danez Smith is a poet, performer, and playwright from St. Paul, MN. Danez, A Cave Canem fellow, is published in PANK, Illumination, Orange Quarterly, and elsewhere. Danez is a senior at the University of Wisconsin-Madison as a founding member of the First Wave Hip-Hop Theatre Ensemble. A Slam Champion of the Minneapolis and Madison Poetry scenes, Danez has established himself as a performer, writer, teacher, and personality in his many worlds, recently placing 6th in the world at the Individual World Poetry Slam. His One-Man Theatre Production "For Those Who Pray In Closets" is receiving critical acclaim and standing ovations wherever it is performed. Danez has travelled across the country and the globe to Mexico, Panama, Switzerland, and England to perform poetry and theatre. A young artist walking and writing in the footsteps of Balwin and Hughes, Danez seeks to continue to be a voice for hushed choir boys, the walking shadows, the joy, hurt, and journey of the black, queer men. Pulling from his artistic endeavors in music and theatre, his voice on the page sings of his old soul, his experienced youth, his treasured mistakes, and all the things that imagine him human. danezsmith.com
7 Stages Black Box
1107 Euclid Ave
Atlanta, GA 30307