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the ripple, the wave that carried me home
February 21 March 24
February 21-March 24, 2024
By Christina Anderson Directed by Donya K. Washington Leonard C. Haas Stage
“A masterpiece … a wave of emotion” - Rolling Out

Despite growing up in landlocked Kansas, Janice Collen’s childhood is defined by water—her mother and father are prominent activists in the movement to desegregate local swimming pools. As Janice comes of age and seeks meaning away from her parents’ politics, an unspoken distance grows within the family. Decades later, when Janice is asked to speak at a ceremony honoring her father, she must delve into her family’s past and reconcile the personal truths and public legacy of her inheritance. With “passages that ripple towards poetry,” (Chicago Sun-Times) this “poignant, transporting, and quietly subversive” (TheaterMania) new play takes us on a journey through the decades, from 1930s segregation to Rodney King, and establishes Christina Anderson as “a playwright to pay attention to” (Variety). 

Run time: Approximately 100 minutes with no intermission.

Individual Sponsors:  Nicole Sakowitz & Bill Pikounis

Cast and Creative Team
Gayle/Young Chipper
Scenic Designer
Costume & Wig Design
Lighting Designer
Projection & Sound Designer
Intimacy Coordinator
Assistant Director
Assistant Projection & Sound Designer
Scenic Assistant
Stage Manager
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"the ripple, the wave that carried me home" program
Read the Program
Special Events
Join us for special events during or following select performances of "the ripple, the wave that carried me home"
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The Joy of Water: A Celebration of Swimming
March 3rd at People’s Light will be a celebration of all things water, pools, and swimming!
Read More
POOL: A Social History of Segregation Reunion
Read More
Enhance Your Experience
Get the Scoop: Tales with Tom

Join local legend and longtime People’s Light company artist, Tom Teti, for a special ripple-themed pre-show Scoop! With his trademark wit and searing insight, Tom performs an autobiographical solo piece focused on the desegregation of Chester County. Following Tom's performance, spend some time with Tom to discuss your thoughts and questions about the piece, theater, and local history. Afterwards, join us for a performance of the ripple, the wave that carried me home.

Tales with Tom is free with reservation, tickets to the ripple, the wave that carried me home matinee sold separately.

Sunday, March 3 at 1pm, before the 2pm matinee
Reserve your free Scoop ticket

Navigating and Understanding PA Court

Join PMC and People's Light for a special double feature to learn about our courts and racial justice. The night kicks off with a Navigating and Understanding PA Court workshop, which illuminates the organization and procedures of the Pennsylvania Judicial System with the goal of bringing Pennsylvanian's awareness of and confidence in their courts. Following the workshop, attendees can make their way over to the theater for a discounted viewing of the ripple, the wave that carried me home beginning at 7pm. 

Tuesday, March 19 at 5:45pm, before the 7pm performance 
Register for the Navigating and Understanding PA Court workshop

Relaxed Performance

Relaxed Performances offer a judgment-free environment that invites individuals with autism, ADHD, dementia, and other sensory sensitivities to enjoy theatre in a relaxed, “shush-free” zone—a great option for parents with young children, too. For each Relaxed Performance, we offer a pre-show Sensory Tour, during which patrons are able to enter the theatre space, view the set and props, and ask questions. This RP features audio description and ASL interpretation. After the Relaxed Performance, there will be a panel with the actors Eunice Woods, Shauna Miles, and Nathan M. Ramsey.

Sunday, March 17 at 2pm

Audio Description

Headsets provide commentary on the visual aspects of a performance. This supplemental narration interweaves with the real-time, spoken dialogue.

Sunday, March 17 at 2pm

American Sign Language Interpretation

This performance features American Sign Language interpretation provided by Hands UP Productions. This is also a Relaxed Performance.

Sunday, March 17 at 2pm

Open Captioning

During every performance this week, dialogue appears on an LED screen placed near the stage to benefit patrons with hearing impairments, as well as English language learners.

March 19–24


Our post-show talkback series is back! Join us after every Thursday night performance (excluding previews) for a post-show discussion, or folk-talk, where audience members will have a chance to process and ask questions about the piece they’ve just witnessed. Each AfterWORDS will be moderated by a People’s Light staff member, who may be joined by a member of the cast or creative team.

Wednesday & Thursday nights: 2/223/7, 3/14, 3/20

Smart Caption Glasses

Our Smart Caption Glasses offer immersive, real-time captioning for live theatre. These revolutionary glasses display a synchronized transcript of the play directly on the lenses, and are customizable for your comfort.

Smart Caption Glasses are available at performances of this play in the date range below. To reserve your pair of glasses, simply add tickets to your cart, then follow the link that appears at the top of the page to add a glasses reservation to your cart for free! For assistance, please contact the Box Office at

March 12–24

Access Nights

To expand access to our work, we offer 50%-off Access Nights throughout the season. The discount is automatic for these performances, no promo code required.

Friday, February 23 at 7pm
Tuesday, March 19 at 7pm

For Educators

the ripple, the wave that carried me home is available for school-day field trips. Click HERE to learn more.

February 28 & 29
March 1, 6, 7, 14 & 21