Sunday, February 25 , 2018, 7:55 pm | Fair 51º


Santa Ynez Valley Union High School Theatre Students Produce Docudrama on Port Chicago Explosion

The Honors Advanced Theatre Class of Santa Ynez Valley Union High School will present a preview presentation of an original docudrama devised by the class this semester during fifth period Friday, April 22, 2016, at 12:40 p.m.

The docudrama examines a true, little-known chapter of California and U.S. history about the munitions explosion in 1944 that rocked the small Bay Area town of Port Chicago, located in north Contra Costa County where the Sacramento River meets San Francisco Bay.

The Port Chicago explosion killed 321, injured scores and spurred a series of events that would lead to the United States’ unprecedented forced eviction, evacuation and demolition of an entire town in 1968.

This event still resonates in the lives of the survivors of the town and their offspring. 

Using actual transcripts of survivors’ testimonies, news reports and over 100 images of the event and its original speakers, most of whom are now deceased, the Honors Advanced class has assembled a 50 minute docudrama that serves as a spoken-word memorial to this nearly forgotten but critical event in U.S. military history.

The April 22 screening serves as a preview to the docudrama’s premiere performance at the explosion site, now a National Park and memorial, June 4, 2016. 

Seating at the limited-capacity screening may be reserved by calling 805.688.6487 x2361 or emailing Jacque Wagstaffe at [email protected].

Jacque Wagstaffe represents Santa Ynez Valley Union High School’s Honors Advanced Theatre Class.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click here to get started >

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >