Those of us who came of age reading A People’s History of the United States might have noticed how the mainstream arts world shamefully lacks widespread visible presence by Native talent. For the second year, the Public takes initiative into the matter by hosting the Native Theater Festival. It’s a truly multicultural affair: Native Hawaiian, Onondaga, Chickasaw, Cherokee, Métis/Dené, Choctaw, and Odawa nations are represented in three new play readings. The festival opens tonight with a concert at Joe’s Pub by Martha Redbone, who weaves her Native and African-American heritage into her music. On Sunday, the Public’s artistic director, Oskar Eustis, moderates a panel with Native theater artists on politics and performance.
Nov. 12-15, 2008