Touring Outreach: The MLK Project
Writers Theatre Education takes a touring production of The MLK Project: The Fight for Civil Rights by Yolanda Androzzo directly to young people across the city! To date, the show has reached over 70,000 young people across Chicagoland. The MLK Project promotes civic responsibility and social justice through dialogue and discussion.
The MLK Project: The Fight for Civil Rights
Written by Yolanda Androzzo
Produced by Writers Theatre
Directed by Tyrone Phillips
Featuring Jennifer Latimore (The Importance of Being Earnest)
The MLK Project is a one-woman show that follows a Chicago student’s personal transformation through studying the Civil Rights Movement. Alaya uses her fists as an outlet for anger, but after interviewing local heroes of the Movement she discovers she can put “anger into action” and that her power is in her voice and her hip hop, not violence. Weaving together real interviews, poetry, hip-hop, history and multimedia projections the performance features stories of both celebrated and unsung Chicago-based Civil Rights Activists. In a tour-de-force performance the actress portrays:
- Reverend Samuel “Billy” Kyles who was present on the evening Dr. King was killed
- Poet and Artist Dr. Margaret Taylor Goss Burroughs who founded the DuSable Museum of African American History
- Reverend Jesse Jackson, longtime fighter for social justice
- Puerto Rican poet and activist David Hernandez
- And More!
“The program was excellent and beneficial for all. It was especially relevant and relatable to our students because of the references to Chicago… I liked how students were engaged throughout as beat-keepers, etc. This was a prime example of the importance of theatre education in schools. Excellent performance from beginning to end!”
– Teacher, Elm Place Middle School
The MLK Project includes:
- A performance of the 45-minute play
- A post-show discussion where students are encouraged to explore the contemporary relevance of the Civil Rights Movement in their community
- A comprehensive Study Guide full of social studies activities, historical information, lesson plans, writing assignments and discussion questions—all of which adhere to the Common Core and Illinois State Learning Standards
- The MLK Project tours to schools each year in January and February. The tour has a limited number of performances so book yours today.
- The MLK Project is appropriate for students in grades 5-12.
- The running time is approximately 60 minutes, including the post-show discussion.
- Performance requirements are minimal.
- The cost of the performance is calculated on a sliding scale based on the number of students on the free or reduced lunch program. Please contact Kelsey Chigas at firstname.lastname@example.org for a quote.
“The acting was phenomenal. My classmates and I really enjoyed how you put acting and education together. I was able to feel how it must’ve been for African Americans back then because of all the detail you were able to put in the performance… our thank you ends here but the knowledge you have given us will last forever.”
– Student, Jane Addams Elementary
PICTURED: CAREN BLACKMORE AS ALAYA THE MLK PROJECT. PHOTOS: TOM MCGRATH
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