As a working class actor that is not classically trained, I have finally found a Shakespeare monologue that I understand both literally and emotionally. And subsequently, I feel an odd (yet intense) sense of joy. I dunno, as someone that loves words and often flirts between standard and non standard speech –
I find the blending of Shakespeare’s words and my MLE magical.
That being said, Shakespeare was DEFO not the only one penning classical speeches. Equally classical text may not be your ting. (Don’t let these purists fool you.) Thus, below are some plays for black, black-mixed and brown (MENASA) actors that include great classical and contemporary monologues to read, study, perform and enjoy.
Flesh to a Tiger (Barry Reckord)
Chiaroscuro (Jackie Kay)
The Dragon Can’t Dance (Earl Lovelace)
Smile Orange (Trevor Rhone)
Superhoe (Nicôle Lecky)
For Black Boys Who Have Considered Suicide When The Hue Gets Too Heavy (Ryan Calais Cameron)
Off the Endz (Bola Agbaje)
I Am Yusuf and This Is My Brother (Amir Nizar Zuabi)
Snookered (Ishy Din)
To Rahtid (Sol B River)