The real life tragedy of far too many African-American Males is reflected in a play about a young, fatherless Man lacking direction without an appropriate role model in his life.
By Cleo E. Brown
In Zooman and a Sign a young and a violent gangman named Zooman who, in a random act of violence ,murders a twelve year old girl and then proceeds to terrorize and menace the community in which the girl had lived, is depicted.
The members of the community, which could be any intercity community in The United States but is New York in this production, subsequently are frightened into silence and submission about the crime although they know what has happened and how the girl was killed.
The family of the little girl, consequently, erects a sign to force their neighbors into shame and into admitting the truth. The end result of this ploy, however, are threats from the Tate Family’s once compassionate neighbors who, becoming aggressive ,threaten to burn the Tate Family House down.
This play, which was written by Charles Fuller, won an Obie Award in 1980 for its writing. The play will be performed by The Negro Ensemble Company at the Peter Norton Space from March 3rd, 2009 (Previews till March 24th) through April 26th, 2009. Zooman and a Sign is under the direction of Stephen Mckinley Henderson and stars Ron Canada as Emmett Tate, Evan Parker as Reuben Tate, and Amari Cheatom as Zooman. Charles Fuller is also the writer of A Soldier’s Play for which he won a Pulitzer Prize in 1982.