Working: The Musical in DC
Working in DC (2021)
Directed & Produced by Shanara Gabrielle
Choreographed by Ashleigh King
Music Direction by William Yanesh
Working in DC was my first theatrical experience in the DMV after the pandemic. The production was directed and produced by Shanara Gabrielle, who guided us with her expansive vision of inclusivity. Working is a piece that explores our relationship with our jobs: from the good, to the bad, to the ugly. The diverse characters vary in age, race, and socioeconomic class. I played six characters: a grocery clerk, a receptionist, a prostitute, a waitress, a cleaning professional, and an unemployed activist. The experience brought me so much growth as a performer and as a citizen of this country. Working in DC was an incredibly special project that took place during a critical time in our nation's history. I am so fortunate and honored to have been a part of it.
"With a celebratory performance at BLM Plaza on the streets of DC and by sharing 'the extraordinary dreams of ordinary people' through the lens of history, justice, activism, and the arts, Working In DC brings the spirit of the legendary Studs Terkel to life for the Washington, DC community. Proudly presented in collaboration with Labor Heritage Foundation, this project uplifts the working class during our pivotal time of racial justice reckoning, COVID-19, and political unrest.
Our site-specific, multidisciplinary, outdoor performance of Working: A Musical is paired with Something To Point To – our civic engagement and education programming. Join labor leaders and local artists in this unique and joyful cross-disciplinary celebration of frontline workers and the American labor movement through the songs of Stephen Schwartz (Godspell, Pippin, Wicked), James Taylor, Micki Grant, and Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton, In The Heights)."
"Working, A Musical is the sort of truthful theater that may prompt one to reflect on one’s own truth — the experience of one’s own workaday work life. It’s also the sort of honest theater that makes plain the work it took to make it. After months of pandemic-imposed unemployment in the theater community, this outdoor production is a bold showcase of arts workers at work."
- John Stoltenberg, DC Metro Arts
"The production’s vivacity is an asset, too. Backed by a four-member band, the cast imbues the 14 songs with charm."
- Peter Marks, The Washington Post
"To change the typical structure of theatre production, Gabrielle and her team are facilitating deep conversation, conducting extensive implicit bias and anti racism training, and creating consensus for core principles centered in social and racial justice. To ensure accountability for these principles, Working in DC has become the first official Allied with Broadway for Racial Justice (BFRJ) organization in the region, creating oversight and practices with BFRJ to deconstruct racism and create a new theatrical community."
- Chloe Rabinowitz, BroadwayWorld