Created by Vagina Monologues playwright Ensler in partnership with V-Day and the Ashé Cultural Arts Center, Swimming Upstream is penned by 16 women from New Orleans and the Gulf region, who recount their stories of survival in word and song.
The writers include Carol Bebelle, Troi Bechet, Reverend Lois Dejean, Asali DeVan Ecclesiastes, Anne-Liese Juge Fox, Adella Gautier, Briceshanay Gresham, Herreast Harrison, Karen-kaia Livers, Tommye Myrick, Charice Harrison Nelson, Kathy Randels, Dollie Rivas, Dina Roudeze, Karel Sloane-Boekbinder and Carol Sutton.
Performing in the Houston engagement will be Fox, Livers, Ecclesiastes, Troi Bechet, Susan Wentz and singers Michaela Harrison and Leslie Blackshear Smith.
Swimming Upstream will be presented at 7:30 PM on the Neuhaus Stage.
Here's how the work is billed: "As a city of what was once 500,000 struggles to rebuild, the rest of the country have probably forgotten the brown water line that still stains homes, stores, and churches. Many have forgotten the thousands who lived through the terror of leaving their homes, the hours of waiting outside in the rain, the nightmare of the Superdome, the one wet blanket to sleep on amid the masses, the lack of food and water, and the fear of rape in the bathrooms. To document those incidents, for a year and a half following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, 16 women from New Orleans - including a gospel singer, a teenage filmmaker, a former Vegas showgirl, and a Mardi Gras Indian matriarch - met monthly to share stories and develop original writings about their experiences before, during, and after the storms." Tickets are available by visiting AlleyTheatre. The Alley Theatre is located at 615 Texas Avenue in Houston, TX.