Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 15 to 18
- Grade: 10 to 12
Slimm, a seventeen-year-old Black boy in a hoodie suddenly finds himself in the first moments of his afterlife. He calls out for God. God does not respond. What happens next is a sacred journey through the unknown, as Slimm grapples with the truth of the life he lived and the death he didn’t choose.
Our Fathers, Sons, Lovers and Little Brothers is a protest for all Black life beyond headlines and hashtags, a prayer for all families left behind, and a promise to the community that all Black lives matter.
About the author
Makambe K Simamba is a Dora Award–winning playwright and actor for Our Fathers, Sons, Lovers and Little Brothers. Other plays include A Chitenge Story, The Drum Major Instinct Trilogy, Makambe Speaks and MUD. Select acting credits include A Chitenge Story, inVISIBLE, GIANT, Bea, Winners and Losers and SIA. She is the 2020/2021 Urjo Kareda Artist-in-Residence at the Tarragon Theatre. She recently co-directed inVISIBLE (Too) at the University of Lethbridge and is a resident member of the artist-run theatre company ARC. Makambe is proudly Zambian, and her intention is to be of service to her community through her ability to tell stories. She is based between Calgary and Toronto.
- Winner, Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play for Theatre for Young Audiences
Excerpt: Our Fathers, Sons, Lovers and Little Brothers (by (author) Makambe K. Simamba)
The last inhale.
A seventeen-year-old Black boy in a hoodie appears. His body parts isolate, moving in a way that is unfamiliar.
Slimm: What just happened?
He considers his own body. He tries to control his limbs.
I’m hot. I’m wet?
He observes the space. He sees eyes watching him.
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the valley
of the shadow of death,
I fear no evil,
For you are with me.
He remembers to do the sign of the cross.
(to the eyes) I haven’t been to church in a minute. I just thought I’d slip in a little insurance.
Are y’all here for Judgment Day?
Is God on Black people time?
There should be like a step-by-step instruction manual.
A large book appears.
The boy approaches the book.
(reading) “Your Journey to the Ancestors.”
The book glows and inscribes itself.
“A Step-by-Step Instruction Manual.”
“Utterly gripping and rendered with great tenderness and bravery.”
S. Bear Bergman, Mooney on Theatre