Meet 'Hattie McDaniel'

Best known for being the first African-American to win an Academy Award, Hattie McDaniel blazed the trail for others long before the Civil Rights movement.

Yet, her life was filled with the challenges of being a black actress in a world dominated by white men, of striving for social justice long before it was accepted as the right thing to do and of being vilified by other members of her race for perpetuating the "Mammy" stereotype through the roles she played.

"A Conversation with Hattie McDaniel," by Port Angeles playwright Rebecca Redshaw, brings Hattie, played by

Sequim resident Marie O'Neill, to life when she meets Kathy, played by Jessica Claiborne, a young woman who shares a life-changing moment.

The Enter Stage Left series opens at 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 19, at the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center, 1203 E. Lauridsen Blvd. A staged reading of "A Conversation with Hattie McDaniel" marks the debut of this work that strives to entertain and educate the audience in the differences and the similarities of life experience. Admission is by donation, to benefit PAFAC.

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