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Kamarck, Edward (ed.) / Arts in society: the arts and the black revolution II

Parrott, Wanda Sue
[Notes and discussions: Studio Watts Workshop],   pp. [509]-519 PDF (10.8 MB)

Page 519

Romaine Harris, once a dropout, has now    519 P
completed one semester at the University
of Southern California. Miss Harris played
Rosa in the workshop's 1967 production
of Errol John's MOON ON A RAINBOW
SHAWL. One of her lines was, "I came
to get something . . . it's time you let me    a
in. Can I go inside and get it?"               -
According to James M. Woods, "That's the
motto of our workshop. Everyone's
welcome to come inside. But when someone
knows that he really wants what we have        P
to offer, then he's allowed to go deeper
inside by becoming an Apprentice, by
affiliating with a Master, and by building a
bridge over which he can climb as he
discovers his personal worth."
According to Woods and Harding, "The
principle upon which Studio Watts
Workshop is founded is to make available
to the artist the means through which he
can express himself. By creative interaction,
an environment is created where the artist
feels he is an essential part of a total       P
cultural milieu, and the degree of             -
alienation between himself and society is
Emery Evans, workshop poet and actor,
delivered one unforgettable line at the        P
program last year. "Pay attention. I still
have my kinky hair. I still have my thick
lips, ain't got a dollar in my jeans and
no job, but I don't shuffle." This means, I    U
am what I am, and I'm going to strive          a
to become myself. I don't shuffle.,
Because Studio Watts Workshop has helped
students establish a new personal
image, a UCLA sociologist declared, "Out
of the rubble of the past, a new image         P
of Watts is being conceived. The ghetto is
an embryonic cultural center in Los
Angeles, where artists are active and
productive . .
The premise upon which Studio Watts
Workshop is built is:                          P
"The man, functioning as an artist, will
develop himself. In doing this, man
begins to change the reality of, and the
image of, his community."
The changes which have come to the Watts       I
ghetto are proof that Studio Watts
Workshop's philosophy-in-action is

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