By Micha Green, AFRO Washington, D.C. Editor. mgreen@afro.com

Black Girl Magic might be a newer hashtag on a social media, but it’s not a new concept and the historicity of the term becomes apparent in Morgan Avery McCoy’s touring one-woman show, “Evolution of a Black Girl: From the Slave House to the White House.”  An excerpt from “Evolution of a Black Girl: From the Slave House to the White House,” will be featured as part of the Virginia Black History Association (VaBHMA) Gala on Feb. 23 at the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner Hotel.

For the Newport News native and Richmond-based artist, McCoy is excited about getting an opportunity to be featured at the 19th annual VaBHMA gala, which has gained quite a lot of popularity throughout the years in her state; yet “Evolution of Black Girl: From the Slave House to the White House,” is not a new show, but has been an evolving project due to her love of history, storytelling and informing.

Morgan Avery McCoy will be performing an excerpt from “Evolution of a Black Girl” From the Salve House to the White House,” on Feb. 23 at the Virginia Black History Gala Association

A self-described storyteller, McCoy began her professional artistry as a teenager.

“I started as a historical interpreter and also as a solo performer when I was 16.  I’ve always been a historian.  I love history- specifically African American history.”

As a debutante at 16, she was created a monologue, “A Tribute to a Queen,” in honor of Coretta Scott King, for her debutante ball.  That performance went so well she began gaining traction as someone who could do historic interpretations of powerful women, and from that “Evolution of a Black Girl: From the Slave House to the White House,” was born.

“’Evolution of a Black Girl: From the Slave House to the White House,’ is a one-woman show that chronicles the history of the African American woman from the 1600s in Africa to present day,” McCoy told the AFRO in an exclusive interview.

She began touring her one-woman show on the church and college circuit over three years ago particularly after legendary actor Lou Gossett Jr., took notice of her and

she was selected to take the play to 30 colleges through the Association for Promotion of Campus Activities (APCA).

“I reached out to Mr. Gossett who has a foundation called the Eracism Foundation, with the whole focus of erasing racism and creating programming that would help in that regard.  And I shared with him what we were doing, how these 30 colleges wanted to bring me, at mostly predominantly White institutions, wanting to share with their students about cultural inclusion- really starting the conversation- which lines up with what he desired to do.  And Mr. Gossett was so gracious to tell me that he’d co-sponsor our travels,” McCoy said.  “He handled us getting to all those places and hotels to stay there, and it was such a blessing.  It didn’t stop there.  He was our co-sponsor for 2015, but then allowed me to be an ambassador for his foundation and also a mentor to me.”

She is continuing to tour her show years later, which led her to the VaBHMA gala on Feb. 23.

The artistic historian pulled from Black women throughout time as her inspiration for the one-woman show.

“I portray 12 characters and we go throughout the eras and we deal with issues such as colorism, sexism, understanding your identity, third generational households, post reconstruction.  We just really address various topics within these 12 characters.  I portray Michelle Obama at the end, Madame C.J. Walker, Maggie Walker, Rosa Parks, Coretta Scott King- just a plethora of women who have contributed so much to our society.  And in addition to these women, I also play some fictional characters as well, but they’re based on historic truths.”

McCoy seeks to motivate audiences through the stories of the women in her show.

“The whole concept of the show is to show how these women were resilient, despite the obstacles that they faced, they were able to overcome those obstacles.  Their stories are just naturally inspiring, and so I want to have an opportunity to be on stage to share their stories in a creative way.  It invites an opportunity for the audience to say, ‘Man, if they achieved all this during a time where they couldn’t even vote, look at what I can do.’ So that’s really the desire- to really inspire to overcome their own personal obstacles,” McCoy explained to the AFRO.

The storyteller said through all her work she hopes to, “be a voice for the voiceless, inspire the hopeless and educate the uninformed.”

 

Micha Green

AFRO Washington, D.C. Editor