Dice Raw Marks Juneteenth With A One-Night-Only Dramatic Homage To MLK & Nina Simone
New Freedom Theatre is already well underway with their current Juneteenth Festival collaboration with PAFA, but tonight’s event is going to be extra special: It’s a one-night-only performance of The King Of Love, a new play written and produced by Karl Dice Raw Jenkins (pictured), of the Roots crew and much else. The King Of Love is inspired by the famous Nina Simone song of the same name, written by her then-bassist Gene Taylor in the aftermath of Martin Luther King's assassination, and performed for the first time just three days later.
If you've ever seen or heard Simone perform the song, as seen above, it's clear why Dice would want to delve into it more.
“The story follows MLK right up until his death and bounces between his last speech and Nina’s tribute to him just three days later,” says Dice. “There’s a ton of music in this piece, but I’d say The King Of Love is a reenactment of American culture and history not just a musical or a play about Nina Simone and MLK but an American story.”
Tickets are available here.