BLACK LIGHT is a revival for turbulent times. Jomama Jones invites us to the Crossroads to contemplate what we must choose at this moment in our own lives, in our civic relationships, in our country, and our world(s).
Commissioned by Joe’s Pub, produced at Under the Radar, Penumbra Theatre Company, The Public Theater, and Greenwich House Theatre.
“Jomama invites us to see her, to witness her, and to go from Black Light back out into daylight with our senses somehow both sharpened and softened: more able to hear others, more able to see ourselves.” -Sara Holdren, New York Magazine
A LITTLE SLICE OF MAGIC. FULL-THROATED, LIGHT-HEARTED, ENRICHINGLY ALIVE.
-The Daily Beast
IN DIFFICULT TIMES, JOMAMA JONES IS AN ARTIST WHOSE COMPANY YOU WANT.
IT'S A PEP RALLY FOR THE SOUL, AND JOMAMA JONES IS WINNING NEW CONVERTS EVERY NIGHT.
Jomama leads an intimate journey – through the darkness of personal and political upheaval, and the shards of shattered illusions – illuminated by spontaneous humor and what The New Yorker calls her “very particular radiance.” BLACK LIGHT draws musical influence from Prince, Sade, Diana Ross, and Tina Turner, and is marked significantly by the Black American Freedom movement, Afromysticism, goddess mythology and divination. This immersive performance piece removes the barrier between artist and audience through inquiry, story and song.
BLACK LIGHT OPENING SEQUENCE
[The room is crepuscular, then, swiftly dark. Bells sound. From away, a voice intones: “Ellegba-a-a!” Jomama enters in the dark. She carries a blue glass altar candle. She speaks to us.]
What if I told you it’s going to be alright?
What if I told you not yet?
What if I told you there are trials ahead beyond your deepest fears?
What if I told you you will fall down, down, down?
What if I told you you will surprise yourself?
What if I told you you will be brave… enough?
What if I told you you nobody’s coming to save us?
What if I told you our hearts are on the line?
What if I told you that we won’t all make it through?
[Luminaries above stay dark for now, but a subtle indigo glow blooms along the walls, so we just barely see the edges of things. Jomama places the candle in a nook.]
What if I told you that is as it must be?
What if I told you that I’ve seen it come to pass?
What if I told you that I have seen the future?
What if I told you I’m from the future?
What if I told you it began tonight?
[The first chords of Black Light are played.]
Here, at the Crossroads.