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Discovering Amistad – A Two Part Cultural Event
August 26 @ 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
PART 1: SUNDAY, JUNE 25, 2023
12:00 – 1:30 PM: Vendors & Food
2:00 PM: Q&A and Film PART 2: SATURDAY, AUGUST 26, 2023
11:00 AM: Djembe Dancers + VIP Tours
$35 TICKET INCLUDES ENTRY TO BOTH EVENTS!
In honor of Juneteenth, The Board of Directors of the Ridgefield Playhouse and Discovering Amistad have joined together to present a unique, two-part cultural event.
Join us – anytime – from 12pm-6pm in our lobby and immerse yourself in the world of African Art presented by Tafika Arts. Tafika Arts is a bi-continental, family-owned-and-operated African Arts import business, with members living and operating out of the U.S., Zambia, and Zimbabwe. The majority of their items come from the Victoria Falls region of Zimbabwe. Come and see all that they have to offer!
Part one takes place on June 25th at The Playhouse, where we’ll feature traditional djembe drummers, African food, and artisanal crafts followed by a screening of Steven Spielberg’s Amistad. The 1997 American historical drama film is based on the events in 1839 aboard the Spanish cargo ship, La Amistad, during which Mende tribesmen abducted for the slave trade managed to gain control of their captors’ ship off the coast of Cuba, and the international legal battle that followed their capture. The film stars Morgan Freeman, Anthony Hopkins, Djimon Hounsou, and Matthew McConaughey, and received two NAACP Image Awards. Please note that the film is rated R and contains graphic material.
The evening concludes with a panel discussion of experts that includes Samuel Pieh (Great great great grandson of Sengbe Pieh, the captive who led the revolt aboard the Amistad when it left Havana), Captain William Pinkney (served as the first captain of the Amistad schooner reproduction and is the first African American to sail solo around the world via Cape Horn), Paula Mann-Agnew (Executive Director of Discovering Amistad), whose organization uses the Amistad as a floating classroom to teach the story of the Amistad as well as learning about slavery, injustice, human rights, and freedom. The interview is led by entertainment reporter Cheryl Washington.
Part two of this cultural event takes place on August 26th at Captain’s Cove Seaport in Bridgeport, where the Amistad recreation will be reserved solely for our ticket holders. Patrons will be greeted with traditional African drumming and dancing, along with welcoming remarks by both Discovering Amistad and The Ridgefield Playhouse. From there, the Discovering Amistad staff will treat you to private tours of the ship, where you can learn about its history and connection to Connecticut. Legal scholars consider the Amistad lawsuit to be the first international human rights trial on record. As Executive Director of Discovering Amistad, Paula Mann-Agnew says, “This initiative is designed to expand knowledge through a variety of mediums; including, a movie viewing, moderated panel discussion and tours on our 129ft Freedom Schooner. To enhance the experience, each event will be infused with Afrocentric arts expressions including drumming, dance and music. Please join us for this unforgettable event.”