NYU Abu Dhabi marks Earth Day - GulfToday

NYU Abu Dhabi marks Earth Day


The centre will stream Octavia E. Butler’sParable of the Sower – The Concert Version by American singer, songwriter, and guitarist ToshiReagon.

To mark Earth Day The Arts Center at NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) will stream Octavia E. Butler’sParable of the Sower – The Concert Version by the extraordinary American singer, songwriter, and guitarist ToshiReagon and her mother, the pioneering civil rights artistic leader Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon.

The mesmerizing theatrical work-in-progress from 2015 (which later had its World Premiere at The Arts Center, followed by the US Premiere at Carolina Performing Arts, both in November 2017), adapted from Octavia E. Butler’s post-apocalyptic novel Parable of the Sower, will be streamed on Wednesday, April 22 at 8pm (GMT+4) through The Arts Center’s Facebook page.

ToshiReagon and Executive Artistic Director of The Arts Center at NYUAD Bill Bragin will also join the audience online for a live Q&A immediately following the streamed performance, moderated by Clinical Associate Professor at the Liberal Studies Program in NYU New York and affiliated faculty member at NYUAD Deborah L. Williams.

Octavia E. Butler’s Parable of the Sower, was the very first show performed at The Arts Center on September 2, 2015.  It returns as part of Reconnect. – a series of outstanding performances from The Arts Center’s archive, streamed to audiences all over the world. Reconnect. was launched following the COVID-19 outbreak and aims to bring communities together and inspire audiences through the arts, even in the midst of social distancing.

Blending science fiction with African-American spiritualism, the performance reveals deep insights on gender and race. Octavia E. Butler’sParable of the Sower, is a mesmerizing reflection on the future of human civilization. The original novel, written in 1993, is set in our present day and delves into life in a society ravaged by the consequence of corporate greed and climate change. 

Reagon’s interpretation, written in collaboration with her mother, the iconic founder of vocal group Sweet Honey in the Rock Bernice Johnson Reagon, is a work of power and beauty that mixes profound philosophy with wild entertainment.

Bragin said: “I cannot think of a more relevant or resonant experience to bring to our audiences on Earth Day.

 The deeply prophetic narrative is a cautionary tale about the environment, exploring communities born of adversity, the central role of empathy in human relationships, and the building of new societies -- Earthseed -- during a time of great change.

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