About Tasered: The Philip Oliver Coleman Story

 In General

Sta’ Phocused Productions along with the Coleman-Oliver Foundation present, Tasered The Philip Oliver Coleman Story, based on the story of a brilliant young man whose courageous battle with a mental illness lead to his untimely death by the hands of the Chicago Police department. Directed by Antonio Polk and written by James T. Alfred, Tasered is an electrifying and eye-opening stage play that will leave audiences captivated.

Tasered: The Philip Oliver Coleman Story, a theatrical stage play, will be playing at the Beverly Arts Center (2407 W 111th St) Chicago, Illinois on Saturday, June 23rd at 4:00 PM and 8:00 PM as well as Sunday, June 24th at 4:00 PM.

WHAT: “Just pray about it,” is a phrase used too often in African-American communities when discussing mental health. “Tasered: The Philip Oliver Coleman Story” is an intense theatrical stage play based on the true story of a brilliant young man whose courageous battle with a mental illness lead to his untimely death by the hands of the Chicago Police Department. Tasered is an eye-opening experience that will serve as a wake-up call to people of color, it’s time to address the effects mental health is having on all communities. The play, which is written by James T. Alfred and directed by Antonio Polk use the story of Philip Coleman to show the severity of both mental illnesses and police brutality in African-American communities. Yes, Black Lives Matter but does Black Health Matter?

WHO: The play is produced by Sta’Phochused Production INC. and is directed by Antonio Polk, produced by Lathea Smyles, executively produced by Jacquie Coleman and written by James T. Alfred, and starring Byron Glenn Willis as Philip Coleman.

WHY: Every year, about 42.5 million American adults suffer from some mental illness, enduring conditions such as depression, bipolar disorder or schizophrenia. African-Americans often experience more severe forms of mental health conditions due to unmet needs and other barriers. African-Americans are 20 percent more likely to experience serious mental health problems than the general population. Tasered is an extraordinary production that aims to spread mental health awareness among African-American communities. Director Antonio Polk hopes this production will serve as a platform for knowledge for African-Americans. “I want people to understand how rapid mental illness is growing in African-American communities, we are the only ethnicity to brushes off our health until the last minute,” he said. “The public needs to understand the seriousness of mental illnesses and what Philip Oliver Coleman went through mentally and physically.” Philip Oliver Coleman’s inhumane treatment by Chicago Police Department only continues to shed light on the severity of police brutality in African-American communities. “I want people to understand the harsh realities of police brutality,” said Polk. “How Philip lost his life in the hands of the police from simply being tasered is extremely alarming. Enough is enough it’s time to address these situations so we can protect our people.”

WHEN: Saturday, June 23rd at 4:00 PM and 7:30 PM and Sunday, June 24th at 4:00 PM

WHERE: The Beverly Arts Center 2407 W 111th St, Chicago, IL 60655

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Meet the Crew!

PRODUCER:

Lathea Smyles is one of the leading executive producers in the Midwest for live entertainment and broadcast productions. As President and Chief Creative Officer of Sta-Phocused Productions Inc., Smyles has projects that span major venues and broadcast programming throughout the nation. Her extensive list of broadcast credits includes many Emmy-caliber features such as Political Profile, Today’s Healthy Woman, The Lead Report, Voices, Racial Profiling, Cable in The Classroom, Battered Women, Terror in The Classroom, Asset Forfeiture 101, and Community Connection. Smyles long list of satisfied corporate clients is highly impressive and reflects her dedication to her craft. Those clients include McDonald’s, Toyota, Chicago Urban League, State of Illinois, Essence Awards, Chicago Police Department, Federal Express, Illinois Parks and Recreation and Cook County Assessor’s Office.

STARRING:

 Byron Glenn Willis serves as the Principal Actor and star of “Tasered: The Philip Oliver Coleman Story.” Willis has an extensive theater background and has recently starred in Rent (Barn Theatre), Smokey Joes Café (The Little Theatre on The Square). Other credits include Alabama Story, The Full Monty (Peninsula Players Theatre) and Little Shop of Horrors (Tantrum Theatre).

DIRECTOR:

Antonio Polk graduated from Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts where he pursued a major in engineering and a minor in theater. It wasn’t long before Polk discovered theater was his true calling.  In 1993, Polk got his silver screen debut in “Rookie of The Year”, where he played the third basemen for the Chicago Cubs. He later appeared in “Miracle on 34th Street”. Other film credits include: “Losing Isiah”, “The Stir of Echoes”, “Barbershop 2”, “Chicago MD”, “Empire,” and “Chicago PD”. He has also appeared in countless productions at the Chicago lyric opera house including “The Great Gatsby” and “Sweeney Todd”. Recently, Polk wrote, produced and starred in the short film detained.

CREATIVE CONSULTANT/ EXECUTIVE PRODUCER:

Jacquie Coleman resides in Chicago and has spent the last several years working on theatrical productions as well as independent short films. Her most recent stage productions were “Defamation,” which was directed and produced by Todd Logan. Some of her noteworthy stage credits include “The Taming of the Shrew,” “Stories of the Mule Train,” “The Cycle,” “The Temple.” Coleman is now serving as the Executive Producer and Creative Consultant for “Tasered: The Philip Oliver Coleman Story,” which holds a special place in her heart because Philip Oliver Coleman was her brother.

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