Skip to main content
Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Performance: “The Talk”

March 8, 2018 @ 7:30 pm - March 10, 2018 @ 7:30 pm

|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every day that begins at 3:00 pm, repeating until March 11, 2018

The Talk is a one-man performance that draws on the voices of ancestors, elders, youths, and intellectuals to engage in the difficult conversations that we must have with our children as we prepare them to survive and thrive in a racialized America. This eclectic theatrical experience weaves together interactive theater, a dynamic embodied performance, and a multi-media production with the words of James Baldwin, Langston Hughes, W.E.B. DuBois, Howard L. Craft, Ta-Nehisi Coates and others. Written and performed by UNC Chapel Hill Communication PhD student Sonny Kelly, The Talk is directed by UNC Chapel Hill Artist in Residence, and Director of the Process Series, Joseph Megel.

This work was born of a painful conversation that Sonny had with his seven-year-old son Sterling after they listened to a radio report about riots in the streets of West Baltimore, MD, in the wake of Freddie Gray’s death in 2015.  At this point, Sonny had no choice but to explain the cause of all of this mayhem.  Ultimately, at the center of it all, was a black man.  Looking into the back seat, Sonny beheld a beautiful black boy, who would one day grow up to be a black man – a black man, who would look an awful lot like the pictures he had seen on CNN of the now deceased Freddie Gray.  He realized then that it was time to have a father-son “talk” about identity and survival. How do you explain to a child the fact that he faces a world that often condones and enacts violence against bodies that specifically look like his?

The Talk is a dynamic multi-media experience that is about returning to memories (timelessly sacred, roguishly painful, and immediately poignant), returning to the ancestors, returning to faith, and reckoning with a contemporary composite truth.  At its core, The Talk is really about a father’s profoundly abiding love for his son.  With this work, Sonny invites audience members into a complicated, but loving, space where we are all encouraged to imagine new possibilities together.

The Talk world debut will happen at UNC’s Swain Studio 6 (101 E Cameron Ave, Chapel Hill, NC 27514) on Thursday, March 8 through Saturday, March 10 at 7:30pm.  There will be a final matinee on Sunday, March 11 at 3pm.  Admission is $5 for students, faculty, staff, veterans and senior citizens, and $10 for general admission. Tickets can be purchased at the door or online at   



March 8, 2018 @ 7:30 pm
March 10, 2018 @ 7:30 pm


department of communication
View Organizer Website


Swain Studio 6
101 East Cameron Avenue
Chapel Hill, NC 27599 United States
+ Google Map