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StageOne to screen film on civil rights leader

Published 5:14 pm, Thursday, February 14, 2013
  • Civil rights leader Whitney M. Young, speaking with President Lyndon Johnson, in a scene from "Independent Lens', "The Powerbroker: Whitney Young's Fight for Civil Rights." Photo: Lyndon Baines Johnson Library, PBS / SFC
    Civil rights leader Whitney M. Young, speaking with President Lyndon Johnson, in a scene from "Independent Lens', "The Powerbroker: Whitney Young's Fight for Civil Rights." Photo: Lyndon Baines Johnson Library, PBS

 

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Fairfield Theatre Co. will screen "The Powerbroker" in collaboration with PBS' Independent Lens series as part of its Community Cinema film series at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 26, at StageOne, 70 Sanford St. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.

The one-hour film, set during the 1960s, follows Whitney Young Jr.'s journey from segregated Kentucky to head of the National Urban League during the civil rights movement. Young fought with the powerful white elite, gaining allies in business and government while calming white allies' fears and relieving fellow civil rights leaders' doubts. He also had to deal with attacks from the militant black power movement.

The film, 10 years in the making, is also a personal portrait of Young, depicting the reflections of family members and never-before-seen home movies, personal photographs and audio recordings. It also features a historical chronicle of how he applied the league's social service mission to realize the movement's rhetoric. It will also show rare archival footage and exclusive interviews with a diverse array of people who have worked with Young, including the late Dorothy Height, Pulitzer Prize winner Manning Marable, John Hope Franklin, Ossie Davis and Howard Zinn. Others include Julian Bond, Vernon Jordan, John Lewis, Henry Louis Gates Jr., Young's biographer Dennis C. Dickerson, Donald Rumsfeld and Ramsey Clark.

After the screening, there will be a panel discussion with Valarie Shultz-Wilson, president and CEO of the Urban League of Southern Connecticut; Stephen Perry, the chapter's board chairman; and Diane Rosenthal ,the executive, director of Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship.

For tickets, which are free, call the box office at 203-259-1036 or visit www.fairfieldtheatre.org.