Since 2007, Nilaja Sun has traveled around the country performing her one-woman show “No Child…,” the title of which refers to the No Child Left Behind act, which turned ten this week. The play is being performed this weekend as part of PlayMakers Repertory Company’s PRC2 series.
“No Child…” explores the characters, conflicts and humor at a fictional New York City high school based off of the one Sun taught at for eight years. Staff writer Grace Tatter sat down with Sun to talk about the importance of theater education, how the response to the show has changed over the years and her recent stint on NBC’s “30 Rock.”
DTH: Why do you think education is an important topic for theater?
See the show:
Time: 7:30 p.m. tonight through Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday
Location: Kenan Theatre
Nilaja Sun: I didn’t really start out thinking of it as an important topic for theater, but as something close to my heart. I’ve been a teacher since 1998, and I felt that arts education and bringing arts into some of our poorer schools is something people don’t know about. That’s why I created this piece. I wanted to tell the story of a teaching artist who goes into an inner-city, resistant school and works on a piece of the arts — and the ups and downs of that — and keeping the humor in it.
DTH: How has the response to the show changed since 2007, when you first performed it, as budget cuts have increasingly affected arts in the schools?