A staged reading of a new original play, For Bo: A Play Inspired by the Murder of Botham Jean by Officer Amber Guyger, will be held on the TCU campus during Black History Month. Through a fictional narrative, For Bo explores the issues that lead to Jean’s death and how society grapples with the resulting trauma, TCU said in a news release.
The reading is Wednesday, Feb. 12 at 7 p.m., in Betsy and Steve Palko Hall in room 130 at TCU, 2800 S. University Drive. Visitor parking is available in the lot next to the Palko building.
The reading is free and open to the public but seating is limited, and an advanced seat reservation is required.
More information: www.theatre.tcu.edu and www.blackandmakingit.com After the staged reading, an interdisciplinary panel of representatives from across the TCU campus and other community leaders will join the all-student cast and playwright and director Ayvaunn Penn for a discussion to promote cross-cultural understanding.
Penn, a Theatre TCU professor, was inspired to write For Bo while closely following media coverage of the aftermath of Jean’s death, including watching the murder trial of Amber Guyger unfold in real time.
The community panel discussion, moderated by Dr. Stacie McCormick from the TCU Department of English, will include Adrian Andrews, assistant vice chancellor of public safety; Robert Arrowwood, a Ph.D. psychology student; Dr. Andrew Ledbetter, professor of communications studies; Dr. Michael Miller, dean and executive vice president of Brite Divinity School; Rev. Dr. Russ Peterman, senior minister of University Christian Church; Aisha Torrey-Sawyer, director of diversity and inclusion initiatives; and representatives from the TCU Counseling Center.
For Bo is part of a movement started by Penn’s organization, Black And Making It, which promotes black excellence in all art mediums and education.
The #ForBo Initiative aims to use the performing arts as a catalyst for positive social change by fostering conversations that heal racial divides through empathy, examining issues within the American criminal justice system and promoting healthy relationships between all, but especially African-American civilians and police officers, the news release said.
Other #ForBo Initiative participants include the University of South Carolina Aiken and KD Conservatory College of Film and Dramatic Arts.
To join the initiative, educational institutions and arts organizations are encouraged to host a staged reading and community discussion of their own.