the ripple, the wave that carried me home

2022 Tony Award-nominated playwright Christina Anderson’s new play the ripple, the wave that carried me home opens in Portland fresh off its world premiere.

“Anderson is a gifted playwright you want to pay attention to.
She has the voice of a poet.” –VARIETY

Chaves Ravine. Photo by Shawnte Sims/courtesy of Portland Center Stage.

Portland Center Stage (PCS) and Artists Repertory Theatre (ART) are pleased to join forces on their third co-production, with the ripple, the wave that carried me home by PCS-commissioned playwright and recent Tony Award-nominee Christina Anderson. the ripple, the wave that carried me home begins preview performances on October 8, opens on October 14, and runs through October 30, on the U.S. Bank Main Stage.

Director Daniel J. Bryant makes his PCS and ART debut with this production. Multidisciplinary artist Lauren “Lo” Steele, who is currently performing at PCS as Susan in tick, tick … BOOM!, returns to play Janice, the daughter coming to terms with her legacy. Making his PCS/ART debut is Gabriel D. Lawrence as Edwin, Janice’s father, joined by Andrea White as Janice’s mother Helen and Chavez Ravine as Janice’s aunt Gayle.

L-R: Andrea White, Chavez Ravine, Don Kenneth Mason, and Lauren Steele.
Photo by Shawnte Sims/courtesy of Portland Center Stage.

“Black people’s relationship to water is complicated,” says Director Daniel J. Bryant. “In the ripple, the wave that carried me home, Janice is coming to terms with her legacy to water, her political inheritance, and the trauma of growing up as a child of civil rights activists, during a questionable, post-slavery era — when this country denied Black and Brown folx access to the essential element of water in public spaces. This poignant story offers a powerful return to the water, taking us on an incredibly personal journey of finding strength, freedom, and joy through forgiveness.”

the ripple, the wave that carried me home centers around a family’s lifelong work to integrate swimming pools in the fictional city of Beacon, Kansas. The play is making its world premiere this week at Berkeley Repertory Theatre, in a co-production with Goodman Theatre. Audiences in Portland will experience the second full production of the work, in a co-production between Portland’s largest and oldest theater companies: Portland Center Stage and Artists Repertory Theatre, respectively. Both companies enjoy major milestones this year – with ART celebrating its 40thAnniversary and PCS its 35thAnniversary.

L-R: Chaves Ravine, Lauren Steele, and Andrea White.
Photo by Shawnte Sims/courtesy of Portland Center Stage.

When Janice is pressed to return to her hometown and speak at a ceremony honoring her father, she has to reconcile with the childhood she’s tried to distance herself from and forget — one defined by her parents’ political activism and fight for the integration of their local swimming pools. Drawing on history that spans from 1930s segregation to the Rodney King trial and beyond, this deeply moving story explores the joys and challenges of forgiveness, justice, and the weight of one’s family legacy.

L-R: Andrea White stars as Helen and Lauren Steele stars as her daughter, Janice.
Photo and graphic design by Alec Lugo/courtesy of Portland Center Stage.

The People’s Party: BIPOC Affinity Night
Sun. Oct. 30, 6:30 p.m. • Sliding scale tickets w/ FREE pre- & post-show offerings As part of The People’s Party: BIPOC Affinity Night for the ripple, the wave that carried me home, enjoy a pre-show discussion with Morgan Spriggs, founder of Black Swimming Initiative, and his daughter Erica Spriggs, as they talk about their vision for a world where racism is eliminated from the aquatics and water sports. Then, after the 7:30 p.m. performance of ripple, a post-show party will follow, with music by DJ VNPRT and complimentary beer from Deschutes Brewery.

Christina Anderson is a playwright, TV writer, educator, and creative. Her plays have appeared at Goodman Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, The Public Theater, Yale Repertory Theatre, KCRep, and other theaters in the United States and Canada. Awards and honors include a 2022 Tony Award nomination for Paradise Square on Broadway, 2020 United States Artists Fellowship, MacDowell Fellowship, Lilly Awards’ Harper Lee Prize, Herb Alpert Award nomination, Barrymore nomination, and a New Dramatists Residency. Her work has appeared multiple times on the annual Kilroys’ List. She is also the winner of the Lucille Lortel Fellowship. Christina’s plays include: How to Catch Creation; the ripple, the wave that carried me home; Man in Love; pen/man/ship; The Ashes Under Gait City; and Blacktop Sky. She taught playwriting at Wesleyan University, Rutgers University, SUNY Purchase College, and served as the interim head of playwriting at Brown University. Christina recently worked as a television staff writer on Edie Falco’s CBS drama Tommy. She’s currently producing an EP of instrumental hip hop music and working on her first TV pilot, The Only Isaac.


Daniel J. Bryant’s most recent directing credits include the world premiere production of ABCD at Barrington Stage Company, What To Send Up When It Goes Down (Congo Square Theatre), How to Catch Creation (Geva Theater), and Feeding Beatrice (St. Louis Rep). Previously serving as associate producer/director of community programs at Baltimore Center Stage under the leadership of artistic directors Kwame Kweih-Armah and Hana Sharif, Bryant designed BCS’s Mobile Unit program, producing and directing Antigone, Twelfth Night, and Endgame, as well as directing A Wonder In My Soul for the main stage. Bryant is also an ensemble member and former artistic director of Congo Square Theatre in Chicago, where he directed/produced What I Learned in Paris, Brothers of the Dust (2012 ATCA New Play Award, BAA for Best Play), The Fall of Heaven, and King Hedly II (BTAA for Best Ensemble, Best Director).

Making his PCS/ART debut is actor, educator, and filmmaker Gabriel D. Lawrence (Martin Luther King Jr. in The Mountaintop at Arc Stages, FBI, EVIL, Prodigal Son) as Edwin. Returning to the PCS stage are Chavez Ravine (Alberta “Pearl” Johnson in Black Pearl Sings! at PCS) as Gayle; Lauren “Lo” Steele (Bella: An American Tall Tale at Portland Playhouse) as Janice, and Andrea White (Portland Playhouse’s Barbecue as Lilly Ann) as Helen.

Director Daniel J. Bryant helms a team that includes Scenic Designer Brittany Vasta (Fucking A at Fordham, Redwood at PCS); Costume Designer Wanda Walden (Gem of the Ocean at PCS and School Girls; Or, The African Mean Girls Play for PCS/ART); Lighting Designer Xavier Pierce (Public Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Guthrie Theatre); Video Designer David Murakami (Everest at Dallas Opera, Elektra at Minnesota Opera, Zoot Suit at The Mark Taper Forum, Sense and Sensibility at South Coast Repertory); Composer Justin Hicks (2021 sound and sculpture installation at Zimmerli Art Museum); Sound Designer Evan Duckworth (Crazy Enough at PCS, 2019); with Stage Manager Kristen Mun-Van Noy, Assistant Stage Manager and Intimacy Coordinator Amanda Vander Hyde, Dramaturg Kamilah Bush, and Assistant Dramaturg Melory Mirashrafi.

When: October 8 – 30, 2022*
Pay What You Will Performances: October 9 and 20 at 7:30 p.m.
The People’s Party: BIPOC Affinity Night: October 30 at 7:30 p.m.

Where: On the U.S. Bank Main Stage at The Armory, 128 NW Eleventh Ave, Portland, OR. To Purchase Regular Tickets: Prices range from $25 to $93 and tickets may be purchased at, 503.445.3700, or in-person from the box office. Prices vary by date and time and are subject to change. ART Members: Contact the ART Box Office at 503.241.1278 or Ticket Specials: Visit to view ticket specials, including Rush Tickets, Pay What You Will, Arts for All, Active Duty, Military Veteran, Student, Under 30, The Armory Card, Groups of 10+, and more.

Please Note: This production is recommended for ages 14 and up; it contains adult situations and language, depictions of racism, and references to sexual assault. Learn more by calling 503-445-3700.
Accessibility: Learn about accessibility options at

Portland Center Stage’s mission is to create transcendent theatrical experiences and community programs that break down the barriers separating people. We support our community in celebrating the full scope of humanity, appreciating difference, and fostering belonging. PCS was established in 1988 as a branch of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and became independent in 1994. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Marissa Wolf and Interim Managing Director Liam Kaas-Lentz, the company produces a mix of classic, contemporary, and world premiere productions, along with a variety of high-quality education and community programs. As part of its dedication to new play development, the company has produced 28 world premieres, many of which were developed at its JAW New Play Festival. PCS’s home is The Armory, a historic building originally constructed in 1891. After a major renovation, The Armory opened in 2006 as the first building on the National Register of Historic Places, the first performing arts venue in the country, and the first building in Portland to achieve a LEED Platinum rating.

Portland Center Stage is committed to identifying and interrupting instances of racism and all forms of oppression, through the principles of inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility (IDEA). Learn more at Portland Center Stage’s 2022-2023 season is funded in part by Season Superstars the Regional Arts and Culture Council and the James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation; Season Sponsors the Oregon Arts Commission, a state agency funded by the state of Oregon and the National Endowment for the Arts, and US Bank; and Producing Sponsors Ellyn Bye, Ray and Bobbi Davis, Ronni Lacroute, Mark Spencer, Argyle Winery, and Deschutes Brewery. Further support for the ripple, the wave that carried me home comes from Production Sponsors Harold Goldstein and Carol Streeter.

Artists Repertory Theatre’s (Artists Rep or ART) mission is to produce intimate, provocative theatre and provide a home for a diverse community of artists and audiences to take creative risks. Artists Rep (est. 1982) is Portland’s oldest professional theatre company and has become a significant presence in the U.S. regional theatre with a legacy of world, national, and regional premieres of provocative new work with the highest standards of stagecraft. In 2016, ART became the 72nd member of the League of Resident Theatres (LORT) and is an Associate Member of the National New Play Network (NNPN). Plays developed by ART have subsequently been produced in New York, Chicago, London, and throughout the country. Recognition for ART-developed plays includes the Dramatists Guild Foundation Award, the Edgerton New Play Award, NEA Funding, the Mellon Foundation National Playwright Residency Program, American Theatre Magazine’s Most-Produced Plays, and coverage in the New Yorker and the New York Times. In 2021, the Oregon Media Production Association (OMPA) honored Artists Rep with the Creative Innovation Award for the company’s pivot to digital mediums in response to the COVID-19 Pandemic. ART recognizes that we are a predominately white organization and operate within systemic racism and oppression, and that silence and neutrality are actions of complicity. We commit ourselves to the work of becoming an anti-racism and anti-oppression organization, and will work with urgency to end racial inequities in our industry and our culture. To learn more about our organization and programs, please visit Artists Repertory Theatre receives generous support from our community of patrons, including significant leadership gifts from The Robert & Mercedes Eichholz Foundation; The James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation; Ronni Lacroute; The Oregon Legislature, The Oregon Cultural Trust and The Multnomah County Cultural Coalition; David & Christine Vernier; The Oregon
Community Foundation; The Shubert Foundation; and the Regional Arts and Culture Council.
Additional Corporate and Foundation support comes from The Kinsman Foundation; National
Endowment for the Arts; The Cowlitz Tribe Education and Arts Fund; Oregon Arts Commission;
US Bank; The Jackson Foundation; PGE Foundation; Sheri and Les Biller Foundation; and Rafati’s

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