Bellarmine is excited to present two performances of “York,” a powerful, one-man performance portraying the untold story of York, the only black man on the Lewis and Clark Expedition. The performances will be on Saturday, Feb. 10 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. in Bellarmine’s McAstocker Theater.
David Casteal plays the character York, who is described as “a whirlwind, a force of nature, a vital, laughing, raging bundle of muscle and brain,” by Jim Kershner of The Spokesman-Review.
York was William Clark’s personal slave, accompanying the Corps of Discovery as the only black man on the Lewis and Clark Expedition. In a stirring performance, Casteal weaves the story of York’s challenges and accomplishments, blending gripping first-person narration with energetic, live African drumming and traditional Native American drum recordings.
Although York proved an important participant in the expedition, as a black man and a slave, York was not recognized as a member of the Corps of Discovery until nearly 200 years after the expedition when, in 2001, President Bill Clinton posthumously awarded York the rank of honorary sergeant in the Corps of Discovery.
Bellarmine is inviting the entire South Puget Sound community to come and experience this important story as the school celebrates Black History Month. The cost to attend is $7 for adults and $5 for students. Tickets will be available to purchase online at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3224945.
History of “York”
“York” premiered at Spokane Civic theatre on April 29, 2005, as directed by Susan Hardie and performed by Casteal, with performances in New York City in July 2006. This production was conceived by two Spokane-based talents, actor and African drummer Casteal and playwright Bryan Harnetiaux (Spokane Civic Theatre’s playwright-in-residence,) and has been performed across the Northwest to packed houses and standing ovations.
For more information, visit www.bellarmineprep.org/news/?id=1896.