UVA Documentary Theater - Ali


UVA student Ali reflects on the events of August 11th and 12th, 2017, in this personal documentary theater piece. 

Students in Doug Grissom and Katelyn Hale Wood's theater classes worked with documentary theater director Christine Umpfenbach as part of our as part of our Transatlantic Partnership on Memory, Responsibility and Transformation.

Together they created short documentary plays on the white supremacist attacks in Charlottesville on August 11 and 12, 2017. Students conducted interviews with residents of Charlottesville and members of the campus community as well as created monologues based on their own experiences. Through their plays, students highlight the diversity of experiences and provides insights into the impact of these events on Charlottesville residents, students, and the victims of the white supremacist attacks.

Below is one student's self reflective piece.


So, I remember, being home, and… my mom was like freaking out. I mean she’s a worrier but like… she was - yeah it was not fun. My dad was a lot more calm but it was weird like he knew a lot about what it was all about. And, I mean, it makes sense cause like he’s been in America much longer and he’s… he was here during the hostage crisis and um… yeah he’s use to this stuff, you know. And like I wasn’t scared. When my parents are scared my initial reaction is to be brave. That’s just how it is.

Um, and looking back now like, how the fuck was I not scared at the moment? I dunno. But after my parents dropped me off at UVA - which was the day after August - so like August 13th. Ha. I was alone in my apartment in Charlottesville. Yeah and I don’t think it hit me until I was alone in my room.

So my blinds were up and I had my Quran in my room and you can see it through the window. And I had this… incomprehensible feeling. Like, if someone sees my fucking window then my life could potentially be in danger. Like… I remember immediately closing my blinds, and to this day I still have my blinds in my room closed. Just for good measure.