Published: April 24, 2017

Student performance commemorates Detroit 1967 uprising

Contact(s): Katie Wittenauer RCAH office: (517) 884-6290

A new collaborative performance honoring the 50th anniversary of the 1967 uprising in Detroit will debut at 7:30 p.m. April 28 at MSU’s Residential College in the Arts and Humanities Theater in Snyder-Phillips Hall.

AFTER/LIFE is a powerful piece based on the true stories of young women and girls who chased police, lit fires, threw bricks, shoplifted and much more during the upheaval that took place in Detroit in July 1967.

Written by Lisa Biggs, assistant professor in the Residential College in the Arts and Humanities, and the students in her RCAH 291 Arts Workshop course, the Detroit ‘67 Performance Project, the stage reading will illustrate the determination of Detroit women to rebuild their city and their lives.

“In the ‘60s, women were largely prevented from taking public leadership roles in business and in politics,” Biggs said. “Women are always the workers, but too often they don’t get the recognition they deserve. As a result, stories of the uprising don’t represent their experiences. AFTER/LIFE is an opportunity for audiences to learn about the events that led up to the rebellion and its aftermath through the eyes of women and girls who were there.”

Students in RCAH 291 conducted interviews with women involved in the 1967 rebellion and incorporated their stories into the show. After the student workshop performances at MSU, the show will be performed during the July commemorations of the uprising at the Joseph Walker Williams Center in Detroit.

Following the AFTER/LIFE debut, a second preliminary performance will take place at 2 p.m. Saturday. Both performances are free and open to the public.

For additional information about the performances, visit

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