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Writers' Theatre presents The MLK project
From a news release
2012-02-22

This article shared 2272 times since Wed Feb 22, 2012
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Chicago, IL—The MLK Project: The Fight for Civil Rights, produced by Writers' Theatre, written by Yolanda Androzzo, directed by Jimmy McDermott and featuring Melanie Brezill, closes its 6th annual tour on February 25, 2012 at 2:00pm at the First Church of the Brethren, 425 S. Central Park Ave in Chicago. The production, followed by a post-show community discussion, is free and open to the public.

Weaving together poetry, hip-hop and history, The MLK Project: The Fight for Civil Rights is a one-woman show that follows Alaya (Melanie Brezill), a student in search of truth and self-discovery through researching the American Civil Rights Movement.

Seen by over 30,000 students, this cross-cultural, multi-media performance interweaves personal interviews of Chicago-based Civil Rights activists, featuring both the celebrated and unsung heroes of the Movement such as Reverend Samuel "Billy" Kyles, Dr. Margaret Taylor Goss Burroughs founder of the DuSable Museum of African American History, Reverend Jesse Jackson and Puerto Rican poet and activist David Hernandez, among others. The 2012 production opened with a free, public performance at the Chicago History Museum on January 16 and toured to area schools January 17-February 24, 2012.

When Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. came to Chicago in the mid 1960s to fight for free and equal housing, the First Church of the Brethren offered him and his organization, Southern Christian Leadership Conference, office space. Dr. King preached at this church during his tenure in Chicago.

The building now houses two additional congregations: The Chicago Community Mennonite Church and the Roca de Esperanza Mennonite Church. The Chicago Community Mennonite Church and the First Church of the Brethren are joining together to co-host this event. These groups are committed to social justice and the inter-congregational partnership will surely provide a unique opportunity for engagement around Dr. King's legacy and Civil Rights in Chicago in an intergenerational, interracial, cross-faith setting.

This year, Writers' Theatre and Hazelden Foundation's Chicago Bullying Prevention Initiative have partnered to create lesson plans for students that will address the themes of the play and build on the anti-bullying curriculum. A continuing partnership with Communities In Schools of Chicago will allow the production to be presented at select schools free of charge. A growing partnership with the Chicago Juvenile Temporary Detention Center will include Writers' Theatre poetry and performance teaching

residencies with Center youth following the performance. All performances include a post show discussion and teacher guides for further study.

Title: The MLK Project: The Fight for Civil Rights

By: Yolanda Androzzo

Directed by: Jimmy McDermott

Featuring: Melanie Brezill (Alaya)

Public performance: February 24, 2012 at 2pm

Location: First Church of the Brethren

425 S. Central Park Ave in Chicago.

Prices: Free

The 2012 tour of The MLK Project is made possible in part by support from the Dr. Scholl Foundation, The Elizabeth Morse Charitable Trust, and Target.

Additional Writers' Theatre's Education Programs include:

Write On! a flexible artist-in-residence program customized for each school and group of students. Writers' Theatre has provided after-school drama programs, theatre units that relate to classroom subjects, and poetry and writing classes in collaboration with CPS schools and teachers.

The Novel Series Study Plan, (NSSP) a cutting-edge arts and literature curriculum where students study a book through writing exercises, discussion prompts and vocabulary lessons in addition to working with a Writers' Theatre Teaching Artist to explore the book using theatre performance. Students use their bodies and voices to make new and exciting connections to the text.

All of Writers' Theatre's education programs are aligned with state and national standards. To learn more visit www.writerstheatre.org/education.

ABOUT WRITERS' THEATRE

Over the past nineteen seasons, Writers' Theatre has become a major Chicagoland cultural destination with a national reputation for excellence. Under the artistic leadership of Michael Halberstam and the executive leadership of Kathryn M. Lipuma, Writers' Theatre has been deemed the "best drama company in the nation" by the Wall Street Journal and achieved nineteen years of surplus operations. The company, which plays to a sold-out and discerning audience of 35,000 patrons each season, has garnered critical praise for the consistent high quality and intimacy of its artistry. Prized for the finest interpretations of classic and contemporary theatre in its two intensely intimate venues, Writers' Theatre's acclaimed work includes Artistic Director Michael Halberstam's world premiere in Glencoe and subsequent production of A Minister's Wife at Lincoln Center Theater; David Cromer's productions of A Streetcar Named Desire and Picnic; and the commissioning, world premiere and New York premiere of Crime and Punishment, which has received more than 30 subsequent regional theater productions.

In July, 2011, Writers' Theatre announced the hiring of the award-winning, internationally renowned Studio Gang Architects, led by principle Jeanne Gang, FAIA to design a new home for the Theatre in downtown Glencoe which will once again allow the Theatre to grow to accommodate its audience, while maintaining its trademark intimacy. The new facility will resonate with and complement the Theatre's neighboring Glencoe community and will add tremendous value to Chicagoland and the North Shore as a premier cultural destination.

You can find Writers' Theatre on Facebook or follow Writers' Theatre on Twitter at Twitter.com/WritersTheatre. For more information, visit www.writerstheatre.org .


This article shared 2272 times since Wed Feb 22, 2012
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