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Gentrification: The Musical! Hits San Francisco

San Francisco’s creeping gentrification was the central theme of a recent musical, City Not For Sale, starring schoolchildren between the ages of 5 and 11.

“It’s about how the techies are taking over. And about how a lot of people who made San Francisco diverse are being kicked out of their homes,” one of the child performers in the play said on a Vimeo promo of the play, which was put on late last year by the nonprofit CASA (Children’s After School Arts Program).

As Breitbart News recently reported, San Francisco is slowly seeing residential turnover in the region’s traditionally black neighborhoods with the arrival Silicon Valley professionals who are better able to afford the region’s rising prices.

The play was performed at the K-8 Rooftop Alternative School in Twin Peaks. While several of the children’s parents reportedly expressed concern over the heavy and adult-like nature of the play, CASA’s Executive Director Leslie Einhorn explained to the San Francisco Chronicle that the nonprofit has a history of creating plays from a “social justice perspective” and suggested it was the children who chose the theme.

The play reportedly featured evil privacy-stealing tech execs, a song called the “Eviction Blues,” and even hipsters. It reportedly gained attention when the parent of one of the kids in the play, Jon Mooallem, wrote about it for Pop-Up Magazine, drawing upon his own experiencesof deciding whether to stay in San Francisco or not.

The play was also featured in an edition of National Public Radio’s weekly show, This American Life, which focused on one father’s perplexed reaction to seeing his daughter perform in the heavy musical. For Einhorn, however, the reaction is slightly different.

Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter @AdelleNaz and on Facebook.

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