Originally aired July 20, 2020. Updated on March 28, 2022.
This Week on One Detroit, Arts & Culture:
A little more than two years ago, March 12, 2020, the Henry Ford Museum, like many other cultural organizations, closed its doors to the uncertain future of the COVID-19 pandemic. As the museum re-opened its doors on July 9, 2020, alongside opening the Greenfield Village, former One Detroit Managing Editor Christy McDonald sat down with Henry Ford Museum President Patricia Mooradian, about the pandemic safety precautions involved in re-opening, as well as the challenges of planning around uncertainty.
Plus, the duo discusses silver linings that have come out of the pandemic and what visitors can expect to see on their next visit to the museum or village.
How much do you know about Detroit’s segregated past? The Plowshares Theatre Company’s latest musical “Hastings Street” takes viewers back to a fictitious Detroit in 1949 where the Black Bottom neighborhood, a segregated Black community that sat where Interstate 75 does now, was on the cusp of being torn down. Following the Carson family, the musical’s writers John Sloan III and Kris Johnson create a tapestry that explores the lives of Detroiters at a moment when the city was rewriting the landscape and displacing those that lived there.
Before the Theatre Company geared up to present a virtual concert featuring songs and scenes from the full musical, One Detroit’s Will Glover sat down with Sloan III, Johnson and the theatre’s artistic director Gary Anderson to talk about the musical’s creation, the history of the Black Bottom neighborhood, and the parallels the writers see in their story to what’s happening in Detroit today.
When national protests and outrage over the death of George Floyd began to seep into the streets of downtown Detroit, Detroit Free Press photojournalist Mandi Wright was there with her camera to capture it all. But how has protest coverage changed from Wright since she began as a staff photographer at the Detroit Free Press in 2000?
One Detroit’s Bill Kubota catches up with Wright to hear how she believes her role has transformed over the past two decades, what it was like to cover 5 days of combative protests throughout Detroit and the importance of photojournalists being at the scene to tell the story accurately and objectively.
All across America, families are ranting and raving about the popular musical “Hamilton,” but metro Detroiters have something else about the musical they can celebrate: its producer, Jeffrey Seller, is a metro-Detroit native who grew up in Oak Park. Former One Detroit contributor and Bridge Michigan reporter Chastity Pratt, who now works with the Wall Street Journal, sat down one-on-one with Seller during his return home to Detroit for the musical’s performance at the Fisher Theatre.
Together, the duo discussed the impact that diversity and representation play in telling Seller’s rendition of American history through “Hamilton,” as well as the $1 million donation Seller made to the Mosiac Youth Theatre, a nonprofit youth theater organization based in Detroit.
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