‘Indian Head’ at Luna Stage takes on offensive mascots

Nikkole Salter’s world elite”American native Head, Commissioned by West Orange’s Luna Stage group, Is a play with a vital message and not a whole lot of nuance. Flirting precariously with the place of after school special, The play seeks to show the damaging effects of rendering Native American iconography and spirituality as athletic mascot. Salter’s meaning is as timely as ever: As an NFL team in our nation’s capital persists in its use of a name and persuits grounded in willful bigotry, And after an unambiguously racist mascot printed caps during the World Series, Tourists would do well to reassess exploitations of primitivist stereotypes. The play was inspired by the controversy that ensued at Parsippany university in 2001, When the faculty decided to change its mascot name from the Redskins to the Redhawks. Luna’s process for”Indiana Head” Shows that there remain 76 schools in New Jersey still using Native American mascots. Yet,American native Head” Could use some improvement. It is a play coloured in broad, Didactic cerebrovascular events, Where characters fit neatly into their types and everybody learns typical lesson in the end. Socially important though the play is really, Entertaining theater it is not. The racists at the play’s center are the Chipeekany university Warriors football team. Coach brenard(Donivan Dain Scott) Is a proud alum who has returned to teach the squad(Regularly identified as”The indigneous group”) Back to glory behind chief Brian(Ollie Corchado, A cast stand apart), The team’s star qb nicknamed Chief Long Arm for his deep ball prowess. During the time Rachel(Quarterly report Battle), A Nanticoke Lenni Lenape student vandalizes this scoreboard on the eve of the team’s playoff game, Coach Smith tempers his disgust by cutting a finish Rachel’s mother Patricia(Carla Rae) Not to press expenditures. In trade, Rachel must serve as the team’s units manager. Why the coach will need a defiant activist on the sidelines during the playoffs is never entirely clear. The team’s exploitation of Rachel’s personal history goes well beyond just their logo and name: Brian does an offensive war dance before each game while fans cry out slogans and chants meant to greatest Indian pride, The aristocracy, And community forum. Crucial team, Their mascot is the culture, Albeit a culture they truly want to entirely not at all. As the play moves along, Rachel makes inroads into opening Brian’s eyes to the dilemna, But Coach Smith digs in his heels in defense of the team’s heritage. For my child part, Patricia, An active person in her people’s cultural outreach program, Struggling to take the measured approach. The moral of this story is a valuable one that him and i should hear, But eventually”American native Head” Feels more like one of Patricia’s cultural competency workshops than a well toned play. Long scenes of dialogue arrive precisely where we know they are meant to; Loose ends in the plot dissipate without settlement; And we are given little chance to research the depth of any of these characters. Kareem Fahmy’s focus does not help matters, As he struggles to use the inventively effective set design of Tina Pfefferkorn and Libby Stadstad effectively. With the target audience on three sides of the rectangular playing space, Sight lines often suffer from stagnant bodies that seem too busy delivering homilies to change position much.