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Say Brother; Theatre and the Arts; Blast From the Past with actor Julian Mayfield

Part of Say Brother.


In this clip, "Blast From the Past" features an excerpt from the 1969 interview with actor Julian Mayfield who talks about the breadth of artistic creativity and ability in the African American community, and the need to avoid straight jacketing this artistic ability into proscribed narrow disciplines. Overall the program features a discussion of the theater and the role of African Americans in the theater. Host Barbara Barrow and guests Fred Johnson (mime), Charles Turner (actor/director), and Susan Batson Ford (actor) discuss working in the theater, the pros and cons of theater work, the importance of the audience in theater, the verbal and nonverbal communication of actors, performance vs. the technical aspects of the theater, African American mime artists, and the politics of the theater. Additional segments include a performances by Fred Johnson, "Blast From the Past" (with a 1969 interview with actor Julian Mayfield), "Information" (with a description of homemaker services narrated by a member of the Women's Educational and Industrial Union), "Access" (with a description of the services of the the Charles Drew Family Life Center), the "Community Calendar," and "Commentary" with Producer Marita Rivero. Directed by Conrad White.

License Clip
Say Brother
Theatre and the Arts
Program Number



Blast From the Past with actor Julian Mayfield

Series Description

Say Brother is WGBH's longest running public affairs television program by, for and about African Americans, and is now known as Basic Black. Since its inception in 1968, Say Brother has featured the voices of both locally and nationally known African American artists, athletes, performers, politicians, professionals, and writers including: Muhammad Ali, Maya Angelou, Thomas Atkins, Amiri Baraka, Doris Bunte, Julian Bond, Stokely Carmichael, Louis Farrakhan, Nikki Giovanni, Odetta Gordon, Henry Hampton, Benjamin Hooks, Jesse Jackson, Hubie Jones, Mel King, Eartha Kitt, Elma Lewis, Haki Madhubuti, Wallace D. Muhammad, Charles Ogletree, Babatunde Olatunji, Byron Rushing, Owusu Sadaukai, and Sonia Sanchez. Series release date: 7/15/1968

Asset Type


Media Type


Mayfield, Julian, 1928-
Johnson, Fred (Halim Adbur Rashid)
African American arts
Batson Ford, Susan
African American theater
Turner, Charles
African Americans in the performing arts
Edwards, Allison
Women's Educational and Industrial Union (Boston, Mass.)
Fernandez, Peter
Glass, Arthur, Jr.
Charles Drew Family Life Center (Boston, Mass.)
Race and Ethnicity
Rivero, Marita (Producer)
Barrow-Murray, Barbara (Associate Producer)
White, Conrad (Director)
Boston Art Ensemble (Theme Music)
Cogell, Lloyd (Still Photography)
Barrow-Murray, Barbara (Host)
McGuire Nicholas, Sallie (Production Assistant)
Cross, June (Community Coordinator)
Farrier, Steven (Community Coordinator)
Publication Information
WGBH Educational Foundation
Chicago: “Say Brother; Theatre and the Arts; Blast From the Past with actor Julian Mayfield,” 12/04/1974, GBH Archives, accessed February 23, 2024,
MLA: “Say Brother; Theatre and the Arts; Blast From the Past with actor Julian Mayfield.” 12/04/1974. GBH Archives. Web. February 23, 2024. <>.
APA: Say Brother; Theatre and the Arts; Blast From the Past with actor Julian Mayfield. Boston, MA: GBH Archives. Retrieved from
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