This past Tuesday, students at Armstrong HS put on Church Hill: A Changing Neighborhood, a play looking at the present and immediate past of the greater Church Hill area. The play was followed by a panel discussion on gentrification featuring Lynn McAteer of Better Housing Coalition, Lydell Poag (student and member of the Armstrong Leadership Program), UR student Ashley Vines, and Maurice Sydnor (Armstrong ’65).
Michael Paul Williams wrote about it for the Times-Dispatch:
Those two different cultures — one black, one white, not always coexisting comfortably — played out at Armstrong during Tuesday’s performance of “Church Hill: A Changing Neighborhood.” The documentary drama was written, performed and produced by students from the University of Richmond in collaboration with students from the Armstrong Leadership Program.
Laura Browder, a UR professor who worked on the project with colleague Patricia Herrera, hopes the play will generate discussion among people “who might live very close to one another but might not talk together all that much.”
The evening was a powerful experience from the beginning. The crowd was as racially mixed gets around here. One playgoer told me that the event had been heavily shared at East End Fellowship.
It’s always great to see former students of mine, 5 or 6 years later, who are engaged and accomplishing extraordinary things. New Armstrong and Old Armstrong – and Kennedy – were well represented.
I shot video of the play. The video itself did not turn out well – it was too dark, and the students were not using microphones. I have embedded it below anyway, hopefully enough of the dialogue comes through.
The panel discussion had better lights and microphones, and is also embedded below.
SEE ALSO: Community dialogue begins conversation on gentrification in Church Hill (9/24/2014)
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Church Hill: A Changing Neighborhood
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