This April 1-3 production at Wichita’s Crown Uptown has a special Wichita connection
Depending on your age, you may have heard the old question, “How are you going to keep them down on the farm after they’ve seen Paire (Paris).”
When it comes to Wichita native Micah Watson, we offer a more interesting, but less perplexing question.
Are we going to get Micah back to Wichita after the rest of the world sees just how talented she is?
Well at least for a weekend, the talented playwright, filmmaker and screenwriter will return home for the Wichita debut of her awarding play “Canaan.” However, after that, the sky isn’t even the limit for this talented young filmmaker, playwright and screenwriter.
Micah, the daughter of Attorney and Pastor C. Edward Watson and his wife Gidget, left home for college at the University of Virginia in 2014, and since then she’s been on a path to greatness.
Even before completing her degree in 2018 in Drama and African-American and African Studies, she was an award-winning playwright.
In the two year’s she was working on her Masters in Fine Arts at NYU, she wrapped up a string of awards, recognitions, film festival selections, honors, and golden opportunities to shine, based solely on the quality of her work – not special connections or perks made available to a select perfectly positioned few.
Now Micah, who is back at the University of Virginia completing an artist in residency at the Memory Project, is considering and evaluating the options for next steps being presented to her.
She wants to continue writing and making films. And like many talented filmmakers, she has a script she’s written for a feature film she wants to produce and direct. Micah’s career is ready to take off on a path that likely won’t lead her back home.
Except, Micah will return to Wichita for the Wichita debut of “Canaan,” a production by The Kansas African American Museum which will be on stage at the Crown Uptown in Wichita, April 1-3.
“Canaan” tells the coming-of-age story of a teenager and his community, caught between love, activism, and spirituality during one of the most tumultuous years in American history – 1968. In “Canaan,” generations collide as Washington, D.C. neighbors must decide where their loyalties lie when the Civil Rights Movement takes a downward turn following the death of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King.
In 2018, the play, and Micah as the playwright, were recognized by the Kennedy Center with the best undergraduate playwriting award and with the Lorraine Hansberry Distinction as the play written by a student of African or Diaspora descent that best expressed the African-American experience.
What can individuals expect from the play?
Micah says people who come to the play can expect to have a familiar experience.
“There will be individuals that people definitely recognize,” said Micah. “There are a lot of different characters, someone everyone can relate to.”
While the play is about tragedy, the play is about a lot more.
“It’s about love, community and about growing up,” said Micah. “Ultimately, the play will encourage everyone to press further into what their duties and responsibilities are as citizens.