This play follows the story of a young Ethiopian man named Abebe who travels to America to attend college. While in America, he realizes that the world is suffering from a major water crisis; global pollution has limited available drinking water for Ethiopians and Americans alike. Abebe works to alter environmental injustice and increase awareness of global water pollution.
Play Title: A Cool Dip in the Barren Saharan Crick
Author: Kia Corthron
Publisher: Samuel French, Inc.
Primary Discipline: Environmental
Secondary Discipline: Water Pollution/Environmental Injustice
Source Texts: Unknown
Character Breakdown: 4 Males, 2 Females
Abebe (Ethiopian Man), Pickle (African American Woman), H.J. (Pickle’s Daughter), Tay (White American Boy), Seyoum (Ethiopian Man), Tich (African American Man).
Setting: The United States and Ethiopia
Time Period: Begins in 2006, then seven years later, then a year after that
Synopsis of Play: The play opens with a preacher-in training, in a small American town stricken by drought. This preacher, Abebe, is the central character of the story. He traveled from Ethiopia to attend college to study theology and ecology. While in America, he lives with his born-again Christian sponsor, Pickle, and her daughter, H.J. He soon realizes that his concerns for water quality in Ethiopia are also prevalent here in America. He learns that Pickle has lost the male figures in her family to Hurricane Katrina. Abebe thinks of his own tragedy when all his family members were lost to polluted water. Act Two occurs nearly a decade later while Abebe is back in Ethiopia teaching at a local university. Abebe decides to travel back to America after his hometown was drowned due to the construction of a super dam. During his American journey, he visits Pickle who now suffers from migraines due to an influx of diesel fumes in the area. These fumes are created by passing trucks in and out of a nearby water bottling plant that Abebe previously protested in act one. This play follows a storyline of pain and suffering but builds on the strength of Abebe and his motivation to change the world that is slowly falling apart before our own eyes.
First Performance Date: March 28, 2010
First Producer: Playwright Horizons in Association with the Play Company and Culture Project at Playwrights Horizons.
Performance History: Ran from March 28-April 11, 2010 at the Playwright Horizons Theatre in New York city.
Entered By: Jake Caracciolo