‘Red Summer’ is this week at the Bijou

Sandra ClarkArts 865, Inside 640

Carpetbag Theatre is marking its 50th anniversary with a series of special productions – the highlight of which is “Red Summer,” scheduled for this week at the Bijou Theatre. “We are pulling out all the stops for the finale of our 50th anniversary series and we can’t wait for you to see what’s in store,” writes publicist Kiame Biandudi.


2019 is the 100th anniversary of the events of the Red Summer, a time of social turmoil and even a two-day Knoxville race riot that culminated with the execution of Maurice Mays, a biracial man accused of killing a white woman.

Playwright Linda Parris-Bailey and visiting director Leilani Chan have planned some special events surrounding the performances, Biandudi says, “in case you’re wondering what day you’ll choose to come.”

Read my earlier interview with Parris-Bailey here.

  • Thursday, Sept. 12, a catered reception and talkback with the cast will immediately follow the performance in the theater.
  • Friday, Sept. 13, Carpetbag Theatre will host a meet and greet in the Bijou Theatre’s gallery with light snacks and refreshments immediately following the performance. It’s another chance to meet the performers.
  • Saturday, Sept. 14, Carpetbag will host a digital story showing just before the performance, also in the Bijou’s gallery. “Come learn what digital storytelling is all about and see a few stories of other locals similar to that of Red Summer.”
  • Sunday, Sept. 15, celebrate the finale of the 50th Anniversary Series at the Jackson Terminal immediately following the performance with snacks, libations and Afro-Caribbean beats by Grand Hustle Records’ DJ PrymeTime.

Tickets are $25 for adults, $10 for children and are available at the Bijou ticket office. Info: https://knoxbijou.org/

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