Written by Carol Eglash-Kosoff. Directed by Michael Arabian.
Running Fri., Oct. 25 – Sun., Nov. 24
Friday and Saturday 8 pm Sunday 3 pm
The Matrix Theatre
657 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90046
The Matrix Theatre is an iconic L.A. theatre, home to some of the greatest actors of our age. So it’s fitting, perhaps, that a play with such an important subject is produced at such an important theatre.
“The Double V” is a historical play set in the era of World War II and during the very beginnings of the civil rights movement.
The story revolves around the Pittsburgh Recorder newspaper, which served the large Black population based there. They receive a letter from a young Black man angry he was unable to enlist in the US Army because of the color of his skin.
The letter moves one reporter so much that she travels to meet its author and brings back a story of far more depth and relevance than she could have ever imagined.
This story is based on true events and reminds us that maybe we haven’t come as far as we had hoped, given the current racial divide.
The bigots are portrayed on stage with in-your-face racism and a hard to stomach hatred of men with far more worth than they. It’s tough to watch honestly, but important to remember. It was men such as this one, a young Black man who stood up to something long since tolerated that turned the tide. A man whose only purpose to do so was to be able to defend a country who didn’t even allow him to vote.
It’s a stunning piece of historical drama, with a lot of love and humor and its own victorious conclusion.
This man’s letter sparked a movement, The Double V, one V for victory in the war and another for victory at home for Black people. Why should they be allowed to fight for a country that didn’t even see them, that didn’t value them as individuals, that didn’t protect them in the country of their birth?
The performances are truly wonderful. All stand-outs and all moving beyond words. This terrible history is, as always, a difficult thing for a country to face, but face it we must. Bigotry and racism still run through this land and these days it’s far easier to see than ever. Sadly.
Stories like this one, which have outcomes that make a real difference, a difference we can still feel, are so important to hear. We can change things, things can truly change. But only with pressure and courage and unity…and many, many more letters from brave people with much to lose.
Beautifully staged with exquisite set designs and ingenious direction, “The Double V” is a must-see play, full of excellent actors putting their hearts into every word and their souls into every scene. I cannot recommend this play enough…Bravo!!
Nic Few, Brie Eley, Preston Butler III, Terra Strong Lyons, Cary Thompson, Joe Coffey, Jamal Henderson, John Apicella
Scenic Design, John Iacovelli
Produced by Leigh Fortier
Lighting Design by Dana Rebecca Woods
Music/Sound Design by Christopher Moscatiello
Projection Design by Fritz Davis
PR by Kuker & Lee PR