January 4, 2023

Washington University’s Black Anthology Presents: Pressed

When: February 2nd at 7 PM and February 3rd at 2 PM and 7 PM

Where: Edison Theater with tickets available for purchase starting on January 18 at Edison Theater or at

Cost: $12 or $10 (with a student ID or for groups 10 or more)

Black Anthology, the longest-standing cultural production at Washington University, is dedicated to telling stories from across the Black diaspora. This year’s production explores the notion of respectability politics.  Black Anthology is a student-written, choreographed, directed, and designed production with the goal of leaving the audience wrestling with questions of their own. Ryan Wilson—producer of this year’s show—remarks, “I joined Black Anthology in the fall of 2020 as a First-Year Intern as a way to interact with students in a time when it felt [like] opportunities to connect with my peers were few and far between. After four years of involvement, I am so grateful for all the knowledge, experiences, and connections I gained as a member. 

Black Anthology is excited to present this year’s show, Pressed, for students, faculty, and the greater St. Louis community. Sarah Aliche, who is making her directorial debut, notes, “”Black Anthology has been a blessing I didn’t know I needed. Black Anthology provided me with the opportunity to be a part of something bigger than myself, and seeing just how many students and members of the St. Louis community are impacted by the show yearly is nothing short of positively overwhelming.”

Each year, Black Anthology partners with a local organization to raise awareness and much needed support.  During the weekend of the production, Black Anthology will be showcasing its 2024 partner, Employment Connection. Employment Connection is a United Way member agency that provides prepares ex-offenders, recovering substance abusers, the homeless, high school dropouts, women on welfare, U.S. veterans, and non-custodial fathers for the world of work.  

Ryan Wilson continued, “I am proud of this group and all the hard work it does year after year. I have so many emotions swirling inside of me knowing my time is coming to an end, but I mostly feel excited for our community to see the fruits of all our labor!”

Black Anthology invites the Washington University and Saint Louis communities to experience the culmination of this year’s hard work by the Black Anthology community and celebrate the inspirations of Black artistry and creativity.

Marcia Hayes-Harris founded Black Anthology in 1989 to create a way to celebrate the experience and history of African Americans. She hoped that it would provide a space for Black students on campus to express themselves creatively. Now in its 32nd year, the program is still completely student-run from show art and script writing to set production and costume design. It is amazing that so many years later, Marcia Hayes-Harris’ vision still flourishes, has a great impact on campus life, and creates a safe space for Black students at Washington University.