The following is a press release submitted by Santa Monica Community College.
Santa Monica College (SMC) will present “Race Relay – Santa Monica,” a multimedia theatrical event & community dialogue on racial issues at March 30-April 1 at its Center for Media and Design located at 1660 Stewart St, Santa Monica, 90404. Performances will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 30; at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, March 31; and at 2 p.m. & 7 p.m. on Saturday, April 1. The free performances are a kick-off to a new series of regularly scheduled community dialogues about racial issues facing our country. The event is free and open to the public. RSVPs are required as seating is limited. To register for the event, visit smc.edu/racerelay.
The event is presented in collaboration with the SMC Public Policy Institute; SMC Associated Students; SMC Division of Equity, Pathways & Inclusion; SMC Student Equity Center, SMC Community and Academic Relations, Santa Monica Bay Area Human Relations Council, and the City of Santa Monica.
With actors recounting true-life situations and including multi-screen images, music, and movement, RACE RELAY brings audiences of various ethnicities together to share their experiences around racism in a safe, non-threatening environment. Director Denise Hamilton is joined by movement specialist Fred Sugerman and master percussionist Christo Pellani in creating an interactive performance combining insightful, frank, compelling, and sometimes humorous stories with news reports while engaging the audience in movement.
Each production is followed by a community circle discussion where personal sharing is encouraged. “It gives audience members opportunities to hear and respect different perspectives, which is one of its major goals,” states Hamilton. “With all the racial violence taking place in our country, one first step is to recognize that we’re all negatively affected and should be able to find ways to speak and work with each other without becoming polarized.”
Hamilton added that the response to RACE RELAY presentations in different communities over several years has been “overwhelmingly positive.”
Additional follow-up community dialogue discussions will take place at the SMC Student Equity Center in the upcoming weeks. RACE RELAY– Santa Monica also leads into the SMC Public Policy Institute’s Spring 2023 Symposium. All events are free, but reservations are required due to limited seating.