BRER RABBIT THE OPERA
"What happens when a black, middle-aged cool marketer at the tipping point in his battle to claim the American dream moves into a notoriously dangerous black neighborhood that just happens to be at the tipping point in its battle with gentrification? Find out in this adult exploration of tricksterism, techno-anismism, and urban survival techniques."
Brer Rabbit the Opera: A Funk Meditation on Gentrification was a collaboration between artist Aisha Cousins, musician Greg Tate and his band Burnt Sugar the Arkestra Chamber that was created through BRIC’s Fireworks Residency Program. The collaboration culminated with a stage performance in January 2015 at BRIC House which explored our modern dilemma of gentrification through the lens of black trickster hero Brer Rabbit and his birthplace the Briar Patch. Members of Brooklyn’s African diaspora who grew up with trickster folktales or were being affected by gentrification helped determine the plot of the opera by participating in one of the community art projects listed below throughout the summer and fall of 2014.