One of South Philadelphia High School’s students, Kristopher Jackson, had his winning monologue performed by a Philadelphia actor at the Young Voices Monologue Festival at Bluver Theater at the Drake. Jackson’s “Wondering Why?” received professional production treatment thanks to a month-long rehearsal process preceding the festival. His monologue was chosen from entries from more than 400 students. The performance took place on March 17, and was attended by the following students from the AP English Literature and Composition course:
Kynan Chambers, Jr.
The Young Voices Monologue program at Southern is coordinated by English teacher Roberta Emanuel. Also involved in the program is Dwight Wilkins. Wilkins has been in Emmanuel’s classroom as a Theatre Exile teaching artist. He’s helped produced the Young Voices festival for eight years. “It’s something I look forward to every year,” he said.
Steven Gravelle is another Theater Exile visiting teaching artist aiding Southern’s program. “I feel that the work they do, giving them a voice and giving them a safe space for self-expression, is very important in their lives. Building communication skills as writers and performers but also as listeners, being able to listen to one another’s work and be able to respond to other students’ work is one of the cornerstones of what we do,” says Gravelle.