'Nearly five decades of on-the-job training have equipped O'Neal with the skills and charm of a master storyteller.'The Drama Review 'A dramatic tale spinner with a canny sense of humor and a winning, engaging stage presence. . . . O'Neal's shows mix folksiness, a sophisticated sense ... of theatricality and astute observation that are a pleasure to watch.'The Philadelphia Inquirer Artist and activist John M. O'Neal is best known for his Junebug Jabbo Jones cycle of plays, a remarkable collection of tales and anecdotes drawn from African American oral literature, which he has performed all over the globe. Four of these plays are included in this volume, along with four of O'Neal's other works: large-scale ensemble productions, first performed by his ensemble company Junebug Productions, as well as in collaboration with A Travelling Jewish Theater (San Francisco, California), Roadside Theater (Kentucky), and Pregones Theater (Bronx, New York). John M. O'Neal co-founded the Free Southern Theater in 1963 as a cultural arm of the southern Civil Rights movement, as well as Junebug Productions, a professional African American arts organization in New Orleans. For FST, O'Neal worked as a field director for the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee and worked as national field program director with the Committee for Racial Justice. He has written eighteen plays, a musical comedy, poetry, and several essays, and has performed throughout the United States, Canada, France, and Scandinavia. He is the recipient of the Award of Merit from the Association of Performing Arts Presenters, the United States Artists Award, and a Ford Foundation Award.
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