Discover the captivating, untold story of Atlanta's courageous black laundresses who defied oppression and ignited a movement. Just weeks before the International Cotton Exposition swept into the city, these bold women took a stand, demanding the right to set their own wages. The Atlanta Washerwomen's Strike of 1881 marked a pivotal moment in history, showcasing one of the largest interracial labor strikes post-Civil War. 'The Wash' invites you to delve into the intimate and often humorous journey of these ordinary women turned extraordinary fighters who fought the system and won.


Kelundra Smith (Writer)- Kelundra Smith is a theatre critic, arts journalist, and playwright whose mission is to connect people to cultural experiences and each other. She likes to write stories about people with lofty ambitions. Her work has been published in: The New York Times, Food & Wine, American Theatre Magazine, Bitter Southerner, TDF Stages, ArtsATL, Atlanta Magazine, and many other publications.

Her love of writing emerged when her second grade teacher assigned the class “story starters,” which were incomplete sentences that the students were challenged to finish and weave into a story. From then on, Kelundra was hooked on the power of her imagination and knew she wanted to spend the rest of her life telling stories. Around the same time, she discovered the incredible collaboration and catharsis that can come from the performing arts by participating in school plays and skits throughout grade school. She went on to earn her bachelor’s degrees in magazine journalism and theatre from the University of Georgia and her master’s degree from the Goldring Arts Journalism program at Syracuse University.

She started her career working in arts administration and project management, doing marketing and community engagement for regional theatres and universities. But, the love of reviewing plays and art exhibitions that she developed in graduate school took over, and she “defected” to arts journalism. Today, she primarily reviews plays by and about diverse people from marginalized communities and writes articles about artistic works created by women and people of color. She also serves as a panelist, moderator and workshop facilitator and speaks to students and community groups about the performing arts.

In addition to arts journalism, Kelundra started writing plays in 2018. Most of her scripts are inspired by headlines and history. South African photographer Zanele Muholi once said “we must attach images to freedom.” This is why most of Kelundra’s work is rooted in the Black, southern tradition. Her goal as a playwright is to evoke empathy and inspire ethical activism. Her artistic mission is to restore Black people’s place in the American theatrical canon and carry their stories around the world. 

Kelundra is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and the American Theatre Critics Association, where she serves on the executive committee and the equity, diversity & inclusion committee. She has been a fellow at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center’s National Critics Institute and guest critic at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival. Her long-term goals are to land on The New York Times bestseller list, open a late-night dessert restaurant and have her plays adapted into a hit television series. Dozens of ink stained notebooks later, she still enjoys nothing more than a well-told story.

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About the partnership

Impact Theatre Atlanta and Synchronicity Theatre will co-produce the world premiere of Kelundra Smith’s The Wash. In Spring of 2023, we held a workshop to explore design elements and next steps for the script with the playwright. The full production will run in the summer of 2024, for four weeks in Synchronicity’s midtown location, and then a 2-week run in Hapeville, where Impact Theatre is in residence at The Academy.