“The Harvest” theater dinner in Valley to honor Black History Month on Saturday

Published 11:30 am Wednesday, March 13, 2024

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For anyone interested in some entertainment along with their dinner on Saturday, “The Harvest” Dinner Theater will be held at The Corner Shaq in Valley.

“The Harvest,” an original script by Valley High School teacher Darian Howell, focuses on issues of racism and discrimination in American history by following a fictional family.

“You’re going to experience what happened during that time,” Howell said. “And it basically talks about how back then, you had to put in so much work but this family just never got a chance to see their harvest. They put in so much hard work, but they never got a chance to see the fruits of their labor. ”

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Howell said the goal of the play is to highlight the hardship that many Black folks faced and overcame in honor of Black History Month.

“I just thought that it would be a great way — since it was Black History Month — to kind of just shine a light on some of the things from the past that happened just to kind of reflect on those things on how far we’ve come and how far we still have to go,” Howell said.

The dinner theater event is in partnership with Team WHIP, a local nonprofit organization that works to bring breast cancer awareness and resources to cancer survivors in the area.

Founder Narfunda Ross, who is active in many community events, approached Howell about the event because of his interest in acting, writing and production.

“This opportunity was really, really special to me,” Howell said.

During COVID-19, Howell filmed the second installment of his web series production, “Vengeance is Mine Part 2.”

In 2023, Howell held a showing of his second production at the New Horizons Community Theatre.

Howell graduated from Alabama State University with a degree in Theatre Arts. He now works at Valley High School as a Theater teacher.

Howell praised his cast for their hard work and dedication to the challenging roles.

He said he hopes the community will come out to see the fruits of their labor.

Howell said some of the cast will be familiar to “Vengeance is Mine” viewers but there will be new faces as well.

“The way that they have taken on these roles is absolutely extraordinary. Their performance was amazing,” Howell said. “… I’m just ready to showcase to everybody the hard work that they put and the dedication in practice. It’s really paid off.”

The show will begin at 7 p.m. ET and dinner will be served during the intermission.

Howell said guests will be able to make their entree choice when they purchase their tickets online at The Corner Shaq website.