Skip to content

Forget charts and bar graphs. Turn data into a play, ‘make them more human’

People in this story

A soft recording of piano and oboe swells, and three actors walk across a dimly-lit stage. They’re in a park: one mimes going on a run; a couple sits on a park bench; another scours the ground, picking up plants and bugs. “Greenways are high-quality active transportation and recreation,” one cheerfully recites. “Public spaces for walking, biking, and rolling for all people of all ages and all abilities.” But that idyll, it quickly becomes clear, isn’t actually for “all” people. A pair of white joggers jostles a man played by Northeastern student Donovan Holt, a Black actor, who then sits, relegated, on the side of the stage. “I open my mouth and redline my voice to silence,” he says. “That stuff ain’t built for us.”

Later on, Halle Brockett, a dual theater and sign language student, portrays a woman applying for affordable housing in Boston; another actor embodies the application form, reciting questions about household income and family size. After Brockett gives her answers, the “application” offers her a $1,750/month, one-bedroom unit… in Natick, 16 miles west of the city.

“NATICK??!” the ensemble exclaims in unison, drawing knowing laughter from the crowd.

Continue reading at Northeastern Global News.

More Stories

image of woman gathering possessions to take before a homeless encampment was cleaned up in San Francisco on Aug. 29, 2023

Are bans on homeless encampments, sleeping outside ‘cruel and unusual’? Policy experts discuss Supreme Court case

image of dirty brown water coming out of silver, slightly rusted faucet

Northeastern research identifies inequities in exposure to PFAS in New Jersey drinking water.

graphic of plastic forks aligned at an angle in front of light blue background

Will the US ban the use of single-use plastics like England, India, Hong Kong and other countries?

All Stories