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MSU Doctoral Student’s Play Exploring Responses to a Police Shooting to be Featured at Kennedy Center in DC

Morgan State University student, Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman, a third-year doctoral student in the Community College Leadership program will be presenting a staged reading of her short play “BuildingBeautiful” at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC on Saturday, September 1, 2018, at 8 p.m., on the Millennium Stage. BuildingBeautiful explores the emotional responses to the nationwide rash of police shootings resulting in the tragic deaths of African-American men.

The play will be featured at the Kennedy Center’s 17th Annual Page-to-Stage New Play Festival, a free three-day celebration of local theater highlighting more than 60 companies from the DC metropolitan area with a series of readings, workshops and open rehearsals of plays and musicals. The Festival, which focuses on new plays that are often still in the development phase, provides audience members with an opportunity to engage in the creation through participatory activities or partake in post-presentation discussions with the artists, helping to shape future productions of the playwrights’ works. This year, Page-to-Stage embraces the Center’s season-long exploration of The Human Journey by tackling subjects such as migration, identity, and discovery.

Ali-Coleman wrote her first play in 2008 when she served as assistant director for the Office of Residence Life and Housing at Morgan. She began using theater as an intervention practice for students who were challenged academically and began writing plays for students to participate in. After writing and staging her first play at the University in 2008, she went on to form an arts organization, Liberated Muse Arts Group, which celebrated its 10th anniversary this year. She has been awarded a 2015 Maryland Arts Council Individual Artist Award and her plays have been staged at more than a dozen festivals and theatres, including the Baltimore Theatre Project during Baltimore’s ARTSCAPE festival this past summer. She returned to Morgan State University in 2016 to begin doctoral studies after teaching Communication Studies and Theatre since 2011 at various community colleges throughout Maryland.

Congratulations to Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman on her accomplishment!

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