Sharing Our Legacy Dance Theatre has beautifully memorialized Mary Ann Shadd Cary and her legacy through its newest production entitled “Shadd’s Daughters.” The team of University of Delaware dance students directed by Dr. Lynette Overby previously presented Shadd Cary within a larger cadre of nineteenth-century Black women activists in their production called, “Women of Consequence.” Dr. Overby’s collaborations with Colored Conventions Project founder and faculty director Dr. Gabrielle Foreman led to the their teams of dances and researchers to work together in developing the dance out of historical records. Their interpretations of the histories and reenactments of speeches by Black women, including Shadd Cary and her contemporaries like Frances E.W. Harper and Harriet Tubman, serve to elevate the voices of women often silenced or confined by the official records. 

“Shadd’s Daughters” turned their focus to Mary Ann Shadd Cary, to engage her story beginning in Delaware and ending with her legacy today. The production blends Shadd Cary’s life with oral histories and thoughtful, personal relfections on her importance to us today. It is performed by a diverse cast including the UD dancers, community members, children, elders, singers, and more. The Sharing Our Legacy team is collaborating with the Center for Black Digital Research at Penn State to hold a series of talks in the fall and winter of 2020 to present their work on this incredible production.

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