Martin Luther King and Malcolm X are forever linked in the history of the Civil Rights movement. This play featuring four actors playing different roles from history and present day examines the legacy of these two men and attempts to judge where we are today in terms of realizing their dreams. Utilizing the spoken words of both Dr. King and Malcolm X, "How Long Must We Wait" looks both backward and forward in coming to grips with race in America. This is the last in a series of plays that includes "Freedom Riders" and "No Easy Road to Freedom" and is intended for late middle school to early high school age audiences. Ideal for Black History month observances.
Playwright Tom Quinn Talks About His Play
“Martin and Malcolm: How Long Must We Wait?”
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO WRITE THIS PLAY?
This was the 3rd play in a trilogy and written one year after “No Easy Road.” I was trying to boil down the historical argument about Civil Rights using the two main voices of the era.
WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE PART OR LINE IN THE PLAY? WHY?
The scene with the guidance counselor was something I experienced as a white teacher trying to understand the feelings of an African-American student in a largely white school. I’ve written almost 20 plays now and I think it has some of the best dialogue I have written.
WHERE DID THE CHARACTERS COME FROM? ARE THEY BASED ON PEOPLE YOU KNOW?
A large portion of the show are direct quotes from Martin and Malcolm. I can’t say it better than they did.
WHAT DID YOU TRY TO ACHIEVE WITH THIS PLAY?
These were the two most important voices and they need to be heard today.