American King Umps: A Midsummer Night’s Melodrama on the Tragedy of Slavery
Teaming up with East Coast director Jaye Austin Williams and Damaris Webb, New York–veteran playwright Don Wilson Glenn creates “a unique twist on the American slave experience.” Named after Glenn’s great-great-grandfather, Umps is loosely based on Glenn’s personal family history of slavery in Texas. But it turns the narrative of a slave family wrestling with newfound freedom (we saw it last year in PCS’s The Whipping Man) on its head by twisting it into high comedy—a “parody of Gone With the Wind and Comedy of Errors meets Roots.”
“Looking at the success of movies like 12 Years A Slave and Django Unchained, it shows that our county has matured a great deal,” says Glenn. “My team and I feel that audiences are ready to have a funny and raw conversation.”
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