Tempestuous Elements

  • Credits

    By Kia Corthron
    Directed by Psalmayene 24

  • Location

    Fichandler Stage

"A big chunk of hidden history…and hidden D.C. history"

Molly Smith

Born into slavery in North Carolina, Anna Julia Cooper was a visionary Black feminist and educator in the late 19th/early 20th centuries, and only the fourth African American woman to earn a doctoral degree. Tempestuous Elements—the 11th in Arena Stage’s Power Play cycle—shines a light on Cooper’s tumultuous tenure as Principal of Washington, D.C.’s historic M Street High School where she fought to keep Black education alive, despite the racism, gossip and sexism that threatened to consign her efforts to obscurity.

Support for Tempestuous Elements is provided by Susan and Steve Bralove and The Drs. Elliot and Lily Gardner Feldman Endowment for New Plays at Arena Stage.