Among the Darkest Shadows

“The human spirit is a pretty remarkable thing because it is so breakable. And yet we also have the power to heal ourselves.”  
                          – Jose Cruz Gonzales, playwright
                            Among the Darkest Shadows

Among the Darkest Shadows is an unconventional play that addresses the far too common problem of human trafficking. Written by playwright Jose Cruz Gonzales and performed by the Inlet Dance Company, this performance offers a different lens for viewing the Director, Bert Goldstein calls “our new civil rights issue.” According to Goldstein, art is a powerful vehicle for helping survivors tell their stories.

The performance is the result of collaboration between the MSU Federal Credit Union Institute for Arts and Creative Education, playwright Jose Cruz Gonzales, law enforcement officials, human trafficking survivors, members of the Michigan Human Trafficking Task Force and its director, Jane White.

Created in the style of “magical realism” the production uses movement, images and music even more than dialogue to convey the real life nightmare of the lived experience of trafficking, which so often transcends our understanding of reality. The story follows the story of two teenagers – a young woman, Pinta, who runs away from home to escape her alcoholic parents only to fall for a pimp who enslaves her in the sex trade; and Lodi, a young Spanish-speaking man who is smuggled into the US by a coyote and the becomes a victim of labor trafficking. The performance vividly introduces the audience to their struggle for survival in the world of human trafficking.

The production plans to reach over 3000 middle school and high school students in Michigan and Iowa with its strong anti-trafficking and anti-drug message. It seeks to caution student audiences to seek help if home is not a safe place and to be cautious of those who might try to exploit you. 

TAKE ACTION: Attend a public performance of Among the Darkest Shadows at the Wharton Center. Performance times are Thursday, February 16 at 7:30pm and Sunday February 19 at 1:00pm Members of the MHTTF will receive a 20% discount on tickets when they use the promo code: INLET. An insight preview will take place 45 minutes prior to the performance. There will be an after chat following the performance.