A young man with dark skin attracts the attention of a white police officer. The police officer, not busy with anything else, takes the opportunity to develop his own particular style of neighborhood relations, stops the young man’s car and shakes him down. One thing leads to another, and the young man is beaten severely. Then, more things lead to more other things and charges are filed. From this point forward, it is pure nightmare for the young man and his family. Such is the nature of police-citizen relationships in pretty much every city and town in the US.
Sleep Deprivation is a play about one such incident, an incident which one reviewer called “as common as rain.”
After a college student is brutally beaten by the police, his mother begins a campaign to protect her son from the officer who claims the boy struck first. Sleep Deprivation Chamber is the harrowing autobiographical story of a mother fighting for her son’s life at the risk of her own sanity.
The play is by Adam P. Kennedy and Adrenne Kennedy, directed by Robbie McCauley. It is showing at the Penumbra Theater in Saint Paul until Octoboer 10th. I’m hoping to get to it over the next few day; I’ve only heard good things about it so far. Check it out!