Thursday, March 7, 2013

"Countdown To Boom" by Kimmika Williams-Witherspoon


For Immediate release---Four black girls died on a September Sunday morning in 1963, at the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama.  Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson and Denise McNair’s senseless deaths became one of turning points for the Civil Rights Movement.  Countdown to “Boom”: We all fall down, written by Kimmika Williams-Witherspoon and choreographed by Kariamu Welsh depicts a Sunday morning and its explosive aftermath through dance, gospel music, freedom songs and theater.  Williams-Witherspoon and Welsh joins a plethora of artists who have given voice to the tragic violence at the 16th Street Baptist Church that occurred fifty years ago this coming September. The bombing, revisited, symbolizes and acts on memory in the form of a question; “Who would these four young women have become if they had grown to womanhood?” Countdown to “Boom:” We All Fall Down! has a cast of 20 including actors, dancers, spoken word artists, singers and musicians. This is the second collaboration between the  PEW winning playwright (2000) Williams-Witherspoon and Guggenheim-winning choreographer (*) Welsh—both, professors in the Center for the Arts at Temple University. In 2010, they produced “La Baker,” a work about the life and times of Josephine Baker, which, likewise told an untold; but necessary story. When asked about driving force behind their collaborations, both artists/scholars echoed each other-- affirming how much they respected each other’s work and then they went on to say; “ we tell the stories that need to be told and that should never be forgotten.”

Temple Performing Arts Center
1837 North Broad Street 19122
Saturday, April 27th at 1:00 and 8:00p

For further information or to schedule an interview, please contact Jana Henry at