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Jesse Williams on the 2022 Tony nomination and Black excellence

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Jesse Williams talked about the importance of diversity on Broadway and reflected on his Tony Award nomination for Take Me Out.

Jesse Williams, fresh off Grey’s Anatomy and in his stage debut, snagged a nomination for playing a bi-racial baseball player who comes out in the first revival of Richard Greenberg’s Take Me Out.

Williams says it’s important white people try to identify with different characters that don’t look like them

Williams — who has long used his platform to speak out on issues of race and equity — says that it ultimately comes down to audiences, particularly white viewers, seeking out material that doesn’t merely tell stories about people who look like them. “It’s really not a question for Black creatives,” he asserts. “Every other racial demographic has demonstrated, throughout time, a willingness and readiness to find themselves in characters that look different from them. We’re reared by seeing ourselves in other bodies. Only in the white world is there a refusal to do that.”

Williams says a true sign of progress in the theater will also come via the types of stories being told by BIPOC artists. “There is no one way to be a Black man or a woman,” he notes. “We’re not a homogenous group. We’re not monolithic. There’s no more diversity within the Black storytelling world and Black experience than there is outside of it. We’re on the right track. We’re just going to have the dominant culture pick up some of the slack.”

Other achivements for BIPOC

A Strange Loop, a musical about a queer Black man writing a musical about a queer Black man writing a musical (and on and on in that titular loop) earned 11 nods — the most this season.

The first Black woman to both direct and choreograph on Broadway in 67 years, Camille A. Brown was recognized for her work on For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow Is Enuf in both categories.

What do you think about Jesse Williams and his Tony Award nomination?

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Source: EW

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Currently studying Communication sciences, when I’m not crying for university, I’m crying for TV series.
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