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A dramatic reading by acclaimed actor Samira Wiley of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s sermon delivered 50 years ago on February 4, 1968, The Drum Major Instinct, a powerful, cautionary speech about the impulse in all humans to be "out front" and recognized as leaders, often for self-aggrandizing purposes rather than a sense of service to others. Following the reading is a town hall-style dialogue about racism, inequality, and social justice, fostering compassion, understanding, and positive action. Accompanied by original and arranged music composed and conducted by Phil Woodmore, featuring a choir of diverse singers, including police officers and their spouses, teachers, activists, and members of the faith community from St. Louis, Missouri. Directed and facilitated by Bryan Doerries, Public Artist in Residence (PAIR), City of New York.

Presented in partnership with the New York City department of Veterans Services and the New York City department of Cultural Affairs.

This event is accessible for those who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Theater of War is made possible with funds from Weissman Family Foundation and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.

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