Sonny Kelly

roller derby skaters in the middle of a jam
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2019 was a big year for the state of North Carolina: lawmakers held the second-longest legislative session in the state’s history, the city of Durham celebrated the 150th anniversary of its founding, and a major hurricane hit the coast in September. State of Things producers were busy covering these stories and many more.

Sonny Kelly on stage
Huth Photography/Courtesy of Sonny Kelly

North Carolina playwright, actor and teacher Sonny Kelly has made it his mission in life to inspire others. He aims to use performance and ministry to connect with people, especially marginalized kids. As a young man in the U.S. Air Force, Kelly felt like he had no real purpose or direction in his life.

Sonny Kelly, playwright and star of 'The Talk' on stage this month in Durham and Chapel Hill.
HuthPhoto

A new one-man, interactive play seeks to change minds and create a more just and equitable community. Sonny Kelly is the playwright and star of “The Talk.” He wrote the production after giving his 7-year-old son a version of “the talk” — a conversation African-American parents often have with their children about how to act in encounters with the police.