Piece Comment

Review of The Plan- Race

"February is Black History Month and we are playing the race card." With those words, producer Barrett Golding begins this 29-minute show on America's most taboo topic: Race. The first piece is funny and chilling. It tells the story of a black woman who likes to sit on city sidewalks and ask white folks for money: "Do you all want to pay some reparations?" The scene made me wonder what I would do as an uptight whitey strutting down the street. Would I ignore her? Would I stop and talk? Would I give her money? And if so, how much? The woman asking for reparations for slavery is damali ayo, an engaging artist who interacts easily with strangers, both black and white. She's polite, yet her direct questions ("What do you think about reparations?") get passers-by pondering our shared history. The other two pieces in this show --- a radio diary by a mixed-race Boston teenager and college students reflecting on what it means to be black --- aren't as provocative, but how could they be? A couple of notes on the music: There's a great music/poetry piece in the show, something by Ruth Forman called "Stoplight Poetry." It's funky and fun. In short, I have three words to stations: License this piece.