Theater: Plays

'A Barefooted Easter'

Casting notice expires: August 5, 2014

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Company

Vincent Terrell Durham
Vincent Terrell Durham, writer.

Production Description

Casting "A Barefooted Easter," a 10 minute play that takes place in a 1962 Jim Crow Mississippi, one day away from Easter Sunday, when Alberta Mae Johnson has a hundred things to do.

Rehearsal and Production Dates & Locations

Rehearses Aug. 25; runs Sept. 12-14 at the NAACP Festival at The Nate Holden Theatre in Los Angeles, CA.

Compensation & Union Contract Details

No pay; producer is working on generating funds for a small stipend. Great exposure during the NAACP Festival.

Auditions

Seeking submissions from: Van Nuys, CA Sign up or Log In to apply.

Alberta Mae Johnson Sides

ALBERTA MAE
Mr. Lewis, I’m afraid there’s something wrong with that tracing. Margaret says these new shoes are tighter than the old ones.

MR. LEWIS
Well, feel free to sit down and trace her foot again. I’ll go get her another pair. But that will be another five dollars.

ALBERTA MAE
I beg your pardon, Mr. Lewis? Why should I need to pay another five dollars? Can’t we just exchange these. She didn’t do no running around in them-- Didn’t scuff them up any. She only slipped them on her feet for a minute.

MR. LEWIS
You know I can’t resell those shoes. What if a white person came in here and I forgot your colored-gal had tried on them shoes? The city of Jackson would close me down. Five dollars, Lillian.

ALBERTA MAE
But Mr. Lewis, nobody needs to know that.

MR. LEWIS
I can’t exchange any shoes that a black foot has been in. Ain’t no room for discussion. I’ll be happy to get your daughter another pair of Easter shoes. Just trace her foot again. Five dollars, Lillian.

ALBERTA MAE
And what if that tracing is wrong? What if those shoes don’t fit either? How many five dollars do you think I got, Mr. Lewis? Maybe my Margaret just needs to sit down in one of these chairs and try on a pair of shoes, proper-like. You can bring her out two or three sizes, like you do for your white customers.

MR. LEWIS
You’re forgetting your place, Girl. And you’re forgetting you ain’t white. Make up your mind on what you want to do. But she ain’t trying on no shoes in my store. How many times do I need to ask for that Five dollars, Lillian?

SISTER LILLIAN
I don’t know what I was thinking, Mr. Lewis. My Sally doesn’t need a new pair of Easter shoes. I’d rather she walk up into that church barefooted like Jesus before I purchase a pair of shoes from you.

MR. LEWIS
Y’all looking for some kind of trouble this morning? Y’all want me to call the sheriff? Get out of my store before I do just that.

ALBERTA MAE
Mr. Lewis, the shoes just don’t fit. Please, I ain’t asking for no favors. Just what’s right.

MR. LEWIS
Get out of my store, Alberta Mae. Now!
(All three women exit store.)

Sister Lillian Sides

SISTER LILLIAN
Good morning, Sister Alberta Mae. I see my daughter isn’t the only one outgrowing her Easter shoes.

ALBERTA MAE
Sister Lillian, how you feeling this morning? I’ve told this girl that we can’t afford for her to keep on growing. Just last week I had to take down the hem in all of her dresses.

SISTER LILLIAN
Somebody needs to tell Sister Martha to do the same thing. Her daughter Ruthie Mae be running around town showing all her business.

ALBERTA MAE
Sister Lillian, don’t try and get me to gossiping one day before Jesus is suppose to rise up from the dead.

SISTER LILLIAN
It ain’t gossip if it’s true. Good morning, Margaret.

MARGARET
Good morning, Miss Lillian.

(MR. LEWIS enters with a shoe-box and the tracing.)

MR. LEWIS
Well, should I be expecting a rush of colored women looking for Easter shoes this morning?

SISTER LILLIAN
You may want to check that inventory, Mr. Lewis. These children are growing like weeds around here, especially Sister Martha’s daughter. How you doing this morning, sir?

MR. LEWIS
Just fine. That’s five dollars, Alberta Mae.

SISTER LILLIAN
Margaret, I know my Sally would die if she wasn’t wearing the same Easter shoes as you. Mr. Lewis, I’ll take the same ones please. Here’s the tracing of my daughter’s foot for the correct size.

About Play

Alberta Mae Johnson's first task is to purchase new Easter shoes for her daughter Margaret. The familiar ritual of taking a tracing of her daughter’s foot to Mr. Lewis’ shoe store seems simple enough. The newly purchased shoes fail to fit her daughter’s feet and an exchange for another pair is not granted, which sends Alberta Mae Johnson marching into the Civil Rights Movement.