The Night is Beautiful...

"The night is beautiful,
So the faces of my people.

The stars are beautiful,
So the eyes of my people.

Beautiful, also, is the sun.
Beautiful, also, are the souls of my people."

When I was very little, I was taught and memorized this poem entitled My People, by Langston Hughes in an acting class at the Elma Lewis School. Both the words and their meaning have stuck with me with perfect clarity even to this day. This is just one small example of the impact that Elma Lewis and her school had on students, and on the Black community in Boston as a whole. Although the school is no longer in existence, her legacy lives on through the National Center of Afro-American Artists, which she founded in 1968 and through the Elma Lewis Playhouse in the Park, which you can check out through the month of August in Franklin Park.

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