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Playhouse illuminates civil-rights hero

Published: Thu, January 31, 2013 @ 12:00 a.m.

Staff report


“Six Nights in the Black Belt,” a play by Lowell Williams, opens Friday at the Youngstown Playhouse and will run for four performances over two weekends.

A special event in the Griffith-Adler Actors Series, the play will be presented in the Moyer Room.

“Six Nights” is a moving story based on the life and death of Jonathan Daniels, a local hero in Keene, N.H. Daniels answered Martin Luther King Jr.’s call to assist with voter registration in Selma, Ala., in 1965, not knowing that the journey would be his last.

Daniels’ convictions and message about racial justice made a profound impact on people of all races who saw him as a visionary in the civil-rights movement.

Carla Gipson is directing “Six Days,” which chronicles the jailing and murder of Daniels after the march on the capital in 1965.

Williams, the playwright, is a friend of Mary Ruth Lynn, executive director of the Playhouse.

“Lowell and I met while I was living in New Hampshire,” said Lynn. “I have been impressed by his writing since I first read his work and am thrilled to be producing this award-winning play.”

Williams will be at the performances Feb. 8 and 9. A public reception will take place after the Feb. 8 performance.

The cast of “Six Days” includes Ryan Newell, Keith Baker, Arianna Manigault, Dawnell Jewell, C. Rick Haldi, Geri DeWitt and Rayshone Oliver.

Reservations are suggested. Call the box office at 330-788-8739.

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