10-22-2019  12:19 pm   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4

NORTHWEST NEWS

Washington State Ecology Director Objects to EPA’s Proposed Clean Water Act Rule

Ecology Director Maia Bellon submitted formal objections in which she calls the proposal ill-advised and illegal

Washington State to Vote on Affirmative Action Referendum

More than two decades after voters banned affirmative action, the question of whether one's minority status should be considered in state employment, contracting, colleges admissions is back on the ballot

Merkley Introduces Legislation that Protects Access to Health Care for Those Who Cannot Afford Bail

Under current law, individuals in custody who have not been convicted of a crime are denied Medicare, Medicaid, and veterans’ benefits

New County Hire Aims to Build Trust, Transparency Between Community and Public Safety Officials

Leneice Rice will serve as a liaison focused on documenting and reporting feedback from a community whose faith in law enforcement has been tested

NEWS BRIEFS

U.S. Census Bureau Hosts Job Recruitment Events in Portland

There are several opportunities to ‘Meet the Employer’ today through Saturday for more information or to apply for 2020 census...

GFO Offers African Americans Help in Solving Family Mysteries

The Genealogical Forum of Oregon is holding an African American Special Interest Group Saturday, Oct. 19 ...

Third Annual NAMC-WA Gala Features Leader on Minority Business Development

The topic of the Washington Chapter of the National Association of Minority Contractors' event was 'Community and Collaboration' ...

Building Bridges Event Aims to Strengthen Trust Between Communities

The 4th Annual Building Bridges of Understanding in Our Communities: Confronting Hate will be held in Tigard on...

The Black Man Project Kicks Off National Tour in Seattle

The first in a series of interactive conversations focused on Black men and vulnerability takes place in Seattle on October 25 ...

Henry Thomas, star of 'E.T.', arrested for DUI in Oregon

TUALATIN, Ore. (AP) — Authorities say Henry Thomas, the actor who starred as a child in "E.T. the Extra Terrestrial," has been arrested for driving under the influence in Oregon.The 48-year-old Thomas was booked into the Washington County Jail and faces the misdemeanor charge after police...

Scuba divers find truck, remains in Columbia River

UMATILLA COUNTY, Ore. (AP) — A truck and skeletal remains found in the Columbia River have been connected to a 26-year-old missing person's case from Washington state.KOMO-TV reports a couple who went scuba diving last week in Umatilla County, Oregon, reported they discovered a submerged...

AP Top 25: Ohio State jumps Clemson to 3rd; Wisconsin falls

Ohio State edged past Clemson to No. 3 in The Associated Press college football poll and Wisconsin dropped to 13th after being upset ahead of its showdown with the Buckeyes.Alabama remained No. 1 on Sunday in the AP Top 25 presented by Regions Bank, receiving 24 first-place votes. No. 2 LSU held...

Vaughn scores twice, Vandy upsets No. 22 Missouri 21-14

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Derek Mason wants it known he's the best coach for the Vanderbilt Commodores.Riley Neal came off the bench and threw a 21-yard touchdown to Cam Johnson with 8:57 left, and Vanderbilt upset No. 22 Missouri 21-14 on Saturday with a stifling defensive...

OPINION

Atatiana Jefferson, Killed by Police Officer in Her Own Home

Atatiana Jefferson, a biology graduate who worked in the pharmaceutical industry and was contemplating becoming a doctor, lived a life of purpose that mattered ...

“Hell No!” That Is My Message to Those Who Would Divide Us 

Upon release from the South African jail, Nelson Mandela told UAW Local 600 members “It is you who have made the United States of America a superpower, a leader of the world" ...

Rep. Janelle Bynum Issues Response to the Latest Statement from Clackamas Town Center

State legislator questions official response after daughter questioned for ‘loitering’ in parking lot ...

Why Would HUD Gut Its Own Disparate Impact Rule?

"You can’t expand housing rights by limiting civil protections. The ’D’ in HUD doesn’t stand for ‘Discrimination’" ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

5th church vandalized; police consider acts hate crimes

CROWLEY, La. (AP) — A string of church vandalisms in a predominantly African American Louisiana community is prompting local police to get federal authorities to investigate the possible hate crimes.News outlets report five churches in Crowley have each had a glass door or window broken by a...

Court weighing whether judge can unseal lynching records

ATLANTA (AP) — Appeals court judges considering whether federal courts can order grand jury records unsealed in old cases of historical significance pointed out Tuesday that a recently passed federal law could provide another way to win release of those records arising from the brazen...

The Latest: McConnell calls Trump lynching tweet unfortunate

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump's comparison of impeachment to lynching (all times local):2:30 p.m.Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is calling President Donald Trump's use of the word "lynching" to describe the House impeachment investigation "unfortunate."In a...

ENTERTAINMENT

Television's Weather Channel wades into climate debate

NEW YORK (AP) — The Weather Channel is moving beyond cold fronts and heat waves to wade into the politics of climate change, with a special planned for early next month that includes interviews with nine presidential candidates on the topic.The campaign's most prominent climate change...

The most dangerous celebrity online is revealed

NEW YORK (AP) — Actress Alexis Bledel has been bookish and sweet on "Gilmore Girls" and "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants." But the actress herself is now officially dangerous.Cybersecurity firm McAfee on Monday crowned Bledel the most dangerous celebrity on the internet in 2019. No other...

Queen Latifah to receive Harvard black culture award

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) — Music artist and actress Queen Latifah is among the honorees being recognized by Harvard University for their contributions to black history and culture.Harvard is set to award the W.E.B. Du Bois Medal to Queen Latifah and six other recipients on Tuesday, according to...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

AP-NORC/SAP poll: Some workers changing actions amid #MeToo

WASHINGTON (AP) — Barbara Myers started work as an apprentice electrician in 1995, and over the years she...

Autoworkers from closed plants fight new GM contract

DETROIT (AP) — If they can close our plant, they can close yours, too.That's the message from workers at...

Jimmy Carter hospitalized after fall at Georgia home

ATLANTA (AP) — Former President Jimmy Carter had another fall at his home in Plains, Georgia, fracturing...

Oslo police shoot to stop man driving on sidewalk, 3 injured

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — An armed Norwegian man stole an ambulance and drove it along a sidewalk in Oslo...

Chile protests: Death toll rises to 15 after violent clashes

SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — Chile's government said Tuesday that 15 people have been killed in five days of...

Venezuelans buy gas with cigarettes to battle inflation

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Motorists in socialist Venezuela have long enjoyed the world's cheapest gasoline,...

McMenamins
Brian Stimson of The Skanner News


From Left: Stage Manager Autumn Treppani, RaChelle Schmidt (Angela) and Isha Tell (Diane, Imani).


PassinArt: A Theater Company will be premiering their production of Oni Faida Lampley's "Tough Titty" this Friday – a story about one African American woman's struggle to deal with a breast cancer diagnosis.

But don't let the play's main theme fool you. Director A. Nannette Taylor says the performance isn't just for those women – and men – who have experienced breast cancer in their lives. The play is about much more than that.

The performance runs March 11 to 26 on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. at the Ethos at Interstate Firehouse Cultural Center, 5340 N. Interstate Ave. Matinees run at 3 p.m. on weekends.

Playwright Oni Faida Lampley's play is, for all practical purposes, an autobiography of her battle with malignant breast cancer – with names and some details changed.

Lampley's real-life struggle was a chronic one. Her cancer moved from her breast to her brain and other parts of her body – eventually taking her life in 2008.

"When I read the script, I thought, yes, this is a story that needs to be told," Taylor told The Skanner News. "Also, my sister is a breast cancer survivor, so there's some personal kinds of things involved. After reading the script I liked what it said and the way it said it. It focused on a certain segment of the population, but everything that is said in it, applies to everybody."

When Lampley was first diagnosed, she was in extreme denial. After all, every one of those faces on breast cancer pamphlets were White. Hers wasn't. Writing in an article for Self magazine in 2007, Lampley said she had no risk factors, her lifestyle strictly avoided any behavior or substance that could cause cancer. She was mostly a vegetarian.

But yet, it still happened.

Lampley's character in the play – Angela – mirrors the frustrations of a person who did everything right in life, says RaChelle Schmidt, who plays Angela in the PassinArt production.

"Her main way of dealing with everything, is to minimize the circumstances," Schmidt says. "What she's getting from her loved ones, is how she should be dealing with it. I think she's pretty frustrated with the people in her life. She's looking for an answer, she wants to know how this thing's going to be solved, and everyone from her best friend, to her husband, to God, she keeps wanting them explain to her, but they keep explaining that it just happens."

Anya Pearson, who plays Angela's longtime friend Rashida, says she's one such character in Angela's life. Pearson's Rashida is convinced that Angela should be dealing with the cancer her way or no way.

"But really, she doesn't know what she's talking about," Pearson says of Rashida. "So she's one of those friends. She's really fun to play."

Drammy Award-winner Kenneth Dembo, who plays Angela's husband Shaka, says the couple's love story is complicated by their new reality.

"It's easy for him to come off as extremely angry, but I don't think he's angry at all," Dembo said. "He's hurt, he's confused, he doesn't know how to show those emotions without going to those old stereotypes of being weak. So he's really trying to be strong, and it's coming across, for lack of a better word, as an asshole."

As Shaka feels left behind in his relationship with his wife, he picks up the slack at home, taking care of the kids and house work.

"He really loves his wife and it really terrifies him that she's not going to be there," he said. "He's really ticked off about that. He wants to take away this pain but he doesn't know how. He can't."

While the play has been described as a breast cancer pamphlet for Black women, Taylor says she's also tried to make it appeal to the universal impact breast cancer has on everyone who knows someone with the diagnosis. She also doesn't want it to be unfairly pigeonholed.

"The subject matter is what it is," she said. "It's also a beautiful love story. It's a story of friendship, of discovery, of exploration and honestly it has something to say to everybody."

Many of the actors in the play – including Pearson – play more than one role, with shifting ethnicities and relationships with Angela. Isha Tell told The Skanner News it's been a great challenge to take on such a range of roles.

"At first I didn't' think I'd be able to do it," Tell said. "Especially when you switch up the characters, you want one character to be so different from the other. And incorporating different accents and things like that. It was a big challenge."

Taylor said some of the biggest challenges for a director are to find and assemble the right cast.

"It's a hugely collaborative effort," she said. "It's a very moving piece, it's a very powerful piece and it's a very honest piece. …  And one of the things I wanted to do is allow the characters to be created so there is a real true humanity and reality."

For Schmidt's Angela, there was a real life person to deal with. Although the playwright was an actor who had been featured on several television shows, Schmidt said she didn't watch any archival footage.

"I found a lot of information of stories that happened to her that seem to be verbatim to things in the play," she said.

Many of the cast members say their own experiences with cancer have impacted their devotion to the production. For Schmidt, a real-life crisis may affect her performance in unknown ways.

This Thursday, her mother died unexpectedly.

"Ironically, 14 years ago when my father died, I was at the same exact point in a show," she said. "It was a completely different show, it was a farcical comedy. I know that it saved my sanity to go and do the show and immerse myself."

She says she's still not sure how her mother's death will affect her performance -- she just knows that it will.

"When we did the rehearsal the other day, I know, things took on new meanings," she said. "I'm still really glad to be here. Time will tell. It's going to affect it somehow."

In addition to the actors mentioned in the story, PassinArt's production of "Tough Titty" also features Shelley Johnson, Harold Phillips, and Laura Li. Tickets are available at the door and at Reflections Coffee House and Talking Drum Books, 446 NE Killingsworth Ave. and online at www.passinart.net.

mlkbreakfast2020 tickets 300x180

Pacific University Master in Fine Arts Writing
Calendar

Photo Gallery

Photos and slide shows of local events

Carpentry Professionals