[hieroglyph] by Erika Dickerson-Despenza

Hieroglyph tickets


Video On Demand

March 13 – April 3, 2021

Tickets: $15 – $100

Closed April 3, 2021
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Run time: 90 minutes.

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About our ticket prices

We are committed to making our programming as accessible as possible, but are also faced with the monumental challenge of getting back to work and paying our staff and artists the wages they deserve. We are offering four price tiers this season, from $15 to $100. Please pay what you can.





By Erika Dickerson-Despenza

Directed by Margo Hall

Co-produced by San Francisco Playhouse and Lorraine Hansberry Theatre

“Such strong acting and direction, and a crack design team” – SF Examiner

“Doesn’t pull its punches in its authenticity” – Broadway World

“One of the most effective pandemic productions I’ve seen” – Chad Jones’ Theater Dogs

“Filmed onstage at San Francisco Playhouse, Hall’s gripping production is captured onscreen so as to feel as much like live theater as possible … It’s a strong play, powerfully performed” – Sam Hurwitt, The Mercury News


Involuntarily displaced in Chicago two months post-Katrina, 13-year-old Davis wrestles with the cultural landscape of a new city and school community while secretly coping with the PTSD of an assault at the Superdome. With her mother still in New Orleans committed to the fight for Black land ownership and her father committed to starting a new life in the Midwest, divorce threatens to further separate a family already torn apart. Will Davis be left hanging in the balance? [hieroglyph] traverses the intersection of environmental racism, sexual violence, and displacement, examining the psychological effects of a state-sanctioned man-made disaster on the most vulnerable members of the Katrina diaspora.


Content Advisory
[hieroglyph] contains depictions of violence and sexual abuse, which could be disturbing to some viewers. If you can help or if you need to talk, click here for suggested resources.


*Appears courtesy of Actors’ Equity Association. Photos by Jessica Palopoli.


Erika Dickerson-Despenza is a Blk feminist poet-playwright, cultural worker, educator and grassroots organizer from Chicago, Illinois. One of America’s most in-demand rising playwrights, her recognition includes: Susan Smith Blackburn Prize Finalist (2021), Laurents/Hatcher Foundation Award (2020), Thom Thomas Award (2020), Lilly Award (2020), Barrie and Bernice Stavis Award (2020), Grist 50 Fixer (2020), and the Princess Grace Award in Playwrighting/Fellowship at New Dramatists (2019). Her residencies and fellowships include Tow Playwright-in-Residence at The Public Theater (2019-2020), U.S. Water Alliance National Arts & Culture Delegate (2019), New York Stage and Film Fellow-in-Residence (2019), New Harmony Project Writer-in Residence (2019), Dramatists Guild Foundation Fellow (2018-2019), The Lark Van Lier New Voices Fellow (2018). Memberships include BYP100 Squad, Ars Nova Play Group (2019-2021), and Ensemble Studio Theatre’s Obie-winning Youngblood collective, and her work has been commissioned by The Public Theater, Studio Theatre, and Williamstown Theatre Festival. Dickerson-Despenza ‘s work has been developed at The Lark, Vineyard Arts Project, New York Stage and Film, Public Theater, Victory Gardens Theater, Fault Line Theatre and Jackalope Theatre. Her plays include ocean’s lip/ heavn’s shore, took/tied, hung/split, and shadow/land.  Her work cullud wattah, following intergenerational women impacted by the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, was scheduled to premiere at New York’s Public Theater in 2020 (postponed due to the pandemic). Both shadow/land and [hieroglyph] were named in 2019 to Kilroys List, the playwrights/producers/directors industry recognition of excellent new plays by women, trans, and non-binary playwrights.

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