Ultimate Rising: UNC’s Darkside Overshadows its Rivals

When Mike Denardis started playing ultimate Frisbee at the University of Iowa more than 20 years ago, the game — for the uninitiated, think soccer or football with a flying disc — was still mostly free-spirited and rule-less. Slow-cooked in hippie origins, it was a short, carefree saunter away from that other counter-culture baby, hacky sack. … More Ultimate Rising: UNC’s Darkside Overshadows its Rivals

Setting a Place at the Table for Grief

Only when Lennon Flowers could not lift her own broken body out of bed did she begin to feel the tidal wave of grief.

She had been going full speed at life for more than four years, becoming skilled at placing its disparate realities into their own tidy boxes: her packed Carolina schedule double majoring in international studies and political science in one; and in the other, her mother’s lengthy battle with lung cancer, with its treatments and questions and that word — terminal. The key to surviving it all was never to slow down, never to mix the boxes. Keep going, just keep going. … More Setting a Place at the Table for Grief

Cake and Conversation

As writer Bekah Brunstetter shows throughout her funny and moving play,  The Cake, reconciling traditional roots with progressive values in a polarized world is wrenching work. And while no one should expect to abandon the things that sustain her — be it waffle fries, her faith or the person who has captured her heart — what should be expected, the play shows, is conversation, with a generous dash of understanding and more than a pinch of heart. … More Cake and Conversation

Step Into Those Shoes

They elbow one another for space in his mind: young black teenagers and their worried mothers, old white supremacists and their nervous wives, skeptical lawyers, gravelly voiced journalists and a slave who mailed himself to freedom inside a box.

Mike Wiley not only plays them all on stage — often more than two dozen characters in a single performance, with no costume changes and few props — the documentary theater actor and playwright rehearses himself to sleep at night with their dialogue, their humanity and inhumanity, strumming through his head. … More Step Into Those Shoes