As an artist, I’ve observed the human spirit hungry for care and connection during this quarantine time. What can we do to fill ourselves with love?

– Regina Taylor

Director, Regina Taylor recently sat down to speak to me about her latest project, titled, Love and Kindness in the Time of Quarantine. The new project featured a blend of songs and monologues examining nine different perspectives during the COVID-19 pandemic and also reflects on the search for light during this time of the ongoing pandemic. In our exclusive interview, she spoke on the project, how the pandemic has affected her personally, and much more.

Tell us about the film you curated and directed, Love and Kindness in the Time of Quarantine.

There are several amazing playwrights in involved in this project who are from St. Louis throughout the country. These pieces are a reflection of where we are now. It’s a theatrical perspective as well as personal. I admire each and every one of the writers for their bravery. They put it on the table to speak out loud and share with the communities so that we know through all of this, we are not alone. The writers Dustin Chinn, Connie Congdon, Isaac Gomez and Octavio Solis as well as local favorites Tre’von Griffith, Carter W. Lewis, Mariah Richardson, and Tonina. The actors include Kathleen Chalfant, Brian D. Coats,Peter Gerety, Cedric Lamar and Karen Rodriguez. We have some songs on there so it is a variety show that shares who we are, who we thought we were, and who we hope to be through this time of COVID-19.

Why do you feel like this project is so important to release, especially right now?

The piece is very important to share because we were at the end of a momentous year. I believe we’ll be passing these stories on for generations to come. With that, we have the amazing writers who are witnessing sharing through their craft – writing through these plays. We see their perspectives on what a challenging year it has been. It has made us shift in so many ways. We struggle to hold on to what we know. Sometimes we have to let go of things and learn moving forward. This piece is about just that. We may come from different backgrounds or be in different cities or countries, but we’re all going through the same thing. Love and Kindness in the Time of Quarantine speaks on all of that.

How has quarantine life been for you personally?

I’ve been quarantined since March. I’ve gone outside my yard perhaps four or five times since then. It is an assessment to be in touch with people via phone or Zoom. It’s also a challenge to make sure that we are connected and that we find ways to adapt. I find that as I am separated from family that we have to make an extra effort with being online to ensure that that relationship is preserved. I have been able to have more intimate conversations with friends and family because we see how fragile the moment is. I’ve lost so many people that I know during the course of 2020 and I don’t want anyone or take anything for granted. It has been a rollercoaster of a ride. Sometimes I find myself on the floor and I have to find my legs to get back up, but we do. We’ve gone through several hardships through the centuries – that is why it is important to know our history. We have perceived and we will remain strong.

What are you currently working on and what can we expect to see from you in 2021?

Most immediately, I am looking at a couple of plays and projects. In this time, I have found it a necessity to write stories, poems, music, and create dance so that there is a message left for people. It is a challenge for people to reflect on the time that we’re in right now. We have to create pieces that may ignite hope and change in this world to bring about a better future.

Click here to visit Regina Taylor’s official website.

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Featured Image provided by Steve Manning Group