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This week, we talk to Christopher Jackson, one of the lead actors in Broadway’s ‘Holler If Ya Hear Me’, the musical based on Tupac’s legacy. When ‘Holler If Ya Hear Me’ first hit Broadway, it was marketed as not just a story about Tupac’s music, but as a story about love — and that’s just what it is, a story about love within a world similar to that which Tupac lived, experienced, and rapped about. The play tackles issues such as gun violence, poverty, and racism head-on — all through the lens of a community that feels its pains together. ‘Holler’ is a play that fights against Broadway’s increasingly homogenized landscape, daring to tell a story that doesn’t fit into the cookie cutter Broadway mold.
We talked to Broadway vet Christopher Jackson, Vertus in the production, about Broadway’s changing landscape, the significance of co-star Saul Williams’ work as a slam poet and actor, the cultural relevance of Pac, and how ‘Holler”s reviews revealed an ugly truth about Broadway culture today.
Annotated excerpts on Genius.com:
- Excerpt #1, “The Michael Jordan of spoken word poetry”
- Excerpt #2, “The cultural relevance of Pac”
- Excerpt #3, “Fighting against a homogenized Broadway”
- Excerpt #4, “Generic review and misrepresentation”