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Regina Taylor to Premiere New Play, Exhibit, as Part of Aspen's Solo Flights in September

Acclaimed actress/playwright/director Regina Taylor's new play, Exhibit, will be staged on Friday, September 8th, and Wednesday, September 13th, as part of "Solo Flights," an annual week-long developmental festival in Aspen, Colorado, of one-person shows presented in the beginning stages of their making. Taylor wrote and stars in the production, which is directed by Emmy-nominee Phylicia Rashad

According to its official synopsis, Exhibit is about "an African-American woman, Iris, who recalls pieces of her childhood as she integrated a school in Muskogee Oklahoma. Her personal recollections are flashes of a sharply polarized America in transition as the civil rights movement rolls forward. Iris’s memories of her martyred innocence for a cause are triggered by things she thought she’d never see again in her lifetime- the enactment of today’s roll back of the social tides of change."

A native of Dallas, Texas, actress Regina Taylor earned praise early in her acting career for portraying Minnijean Brown, a member of the Little Rock Nine, in 1981's "Crisis at Central High." She gained the attention of mainstream audiences in 1989's "Lean on Me," in which she played an auspicious student's drug-addicted mother.

For her role as Lilly Harper, the Black housekeeper on the early '90s TV series, "I'll Fly Away," she received a Golden Globe award for Best Actress in a Television Drama—the first African American to do so—and also an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series. She was also the first African American to play the lead in a "Masterpiece Theatre" production on PBS, the Langston Hughes adaptation, "Cora Unashamed."

Onstage, Taylor became the first Black woman to play Juliet in Romeo and Juliet on Broadway. She is also an accomplished playwright, serving as a writer-in-residence at the Signature Theatre and a Distinguished Artistic Associate of Chicago's Goodman Theatre. She won a best new play award from the American Critics' Association for her play about 1940s female jazz musicians, Oo-Bla-Dee, and earned four Helen Hayes Awards, including those for Best Direction and Best Regional Musical, for Crowns, a "play-with-gospel-music" based on the book of the same name of photographs by Michael Cunningham and journalist Craig Marberry. 

At the 2012 Chicago International Film Festival, Taylor interviewed Viola Davis, who was that year's recipient of a Career Achievement Award at the festival's Black Perspectives Tribute. She went on to portray Davis' mother in the miniseries, "The First Lady," in which the Oscar-winner portrayed Michelle Obama. Taylor recently received a Best Guest Actress in a Drama Series nomination from the Hollywood Critics Association for her guest appearance on "CSI: Vegas," and hosted an acting studio master class this past May. 

For more info on Regina Taylor, visit her official site. You can find more information on Solo Flights and the full line-up of performances here.

Chaz Ebert

Chaz is the CEO of several Ebert enterprises, including the President of The Ebert Company Ltd, and of Ebert Digital LLC, Publisher of RogerEbert.com, President of Ebert Productions and Chairman of the Board of The Roger and Chaz Ebert Foundation, and Co-Founder and Producer of Ebertfest, the film festival now in its 24th year.

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