In September of 2020, we launched the Voices of Democracy initiative as a way to highlight the importance of voting and the need for racial justice—two inextricably-linked pillars of our democracy. While the election may be over, your voice is still needed. Your voice has the ability to instill courage and hope, to call out injustice, to build the bridge from empathy to action. Your voice is the greatest tool you have to create positive change in this country we all call home. Your voice is your power and your gift. Use it!

TheatreWorks began 50 years ago during a time in our nation’s history of uncertainty and hope for a better world. Like today, everyday people were marching in the streets, making their voices heard, and demanding more from their democracy. When “Popcorn,” our first show, premiered in July of 1970, a divided community banded together behind a fledgling group of theatre artists who had a vision and a dream. 

These artists hit a chord by providing space for ideas, allowing for beauty in our lives, and answering a need in our community. We are still bonded together by that need. Great theatre, great art, can provoke thought, provide much-needed different points of view, open hearts, and make us, as the late US Representative John Lewis once said, “stand up, speak up, speak out.”


Land Acknowledgement

TheatreWorks acknowledges that our offices are on the traditional territory and homelands of the Ramaytush Ohlone peoples who lived in the southern part of the San Francisco Bay Area to Monterey. Prior to the arrival of the Spanish in 1769, the Ramaytush Ohlone numbered approximately 1400 persons and lived in eleven tribelets.

TheatreWorks is working with members of the local Ohlone community to expand our understanding of the lands on which our theatres in Palo Alto and Mountain View sit.



Table of Contents 

Celebrating Black History MonthPoems for DemocracyWomens Equality Day
Actor James Monroe Iglehart on Racial JusticeQuotes for Democracy • Anti-Racism Update


Celebrating Black History Month

August Wilson Interview

"I write the Black experience in America, and contained within that experience—because it is a human experience—are all the universalities."

An undisputed titan of American playwriting, the late August Wilson spent his career chronicling Black life in the twentieth century with honesty and poetry in equal measure. In this Kennedy Center interview from 2001, Wilson reflects on his life, his work, and his many influences for a group of students at C. D. Hylton High School in Woodbridge, VA. It's a frank and engaging conversation, and a fascinating peek into the mind that gave the world the Century Cycle, which includes FencesMa Rainey's Black Bottom, and Gem of the Ocean.



Lorraine Hansberry: Sighted Eyes/Feeling Heart

Hosted and created by PBS. Explore the inner life and works of the activist, playwright and author of "A Raisin in the Sun," Lorraine Hansberry. Narrated by actress LaTanya Richardson Jackson and featuring the voice of Tony Award-winning actress Anika Noni Rose as Hansberry.


Poems for Democracy

Courage Rising

by Beau Sia

Performers: Roneet Aliza Rahamim, Aldo Billingslea, Khalia Davis, Jomar Tagatac, Rinabeth Apostol,
Steven Flores, Juan Amador, Leigh Rondon-Davis and Phil Wong

I, Too

by Langston Hughes
Performer: Tim Bond

Let America Be America Again

by Langston Hughes
Performer: Aldo Billingslea

Womens Equality Day

Celebrate Womens Equality

One hundred years ago, the 19th Amendment, giving women* the right to vote, was ratified. In 1965, The Voting Rights Act was signed into law, outlawing discriminatory voting practices and ensuring that women (and men) of color were also given the right to vote.



Actor James Monroe Iglehart on Racial Justice

 Tony winner and TheatreWorks alum James Monroe Iglehart speaks with Founder, Artistic Director Emeritus Robert Kelley.

Quotes for Democracy



Anti-Racism Update

Anti-racism work at TheatreWorks Silicon Valley

 Here is an updated message to the TheatreWorks family and community.


Resources to Help Make a Difference

Learn how you can help stand with us in support of Black Lives Matter