Press Release from Coahoma Community College Public Relations; (662) 621-4061 - Brittany Davis-Green - firstname.lastname@example.org
CLARKSDALE – “A slave state is nothing but a negative state of mind; a free state is a positive state of mind.”
It was with this message that actor and director Phil Darius Wallace concluded his performance of “A Starry Road to Freedom” Tuesday evening at Coahoma Community College’s Georgia Lewis Theater.
The one-man show, hosted as part of CCC Cultural Awareness Week activities, depicted the life of African-American social reformer, abolitionist, orator and writer Frederick Douglas.
During the play, composed by Wallace, the audience saw portrayals of Douglas’ early life that helped ignite his mission to expose slavery and uplift fellow African Americans.
“I try to reach some of the young people by doing some of the younger version of the characters,” said Wallace. “… it’s my way of trying to make it relatable.”
The play came full circle as Wallace related the past enslavement of African Americans in America to modern day slavery such as “third grade tests, drugs and gangs”.
Like Douglas, Wallace encouraged the audience to fight for freedom with “pen, voice and vote”.
“The message I hoped to bring to the audience is that people can overcome whatever obstacles they have in life. … no matter what it is there are things they can do to rise up and overcome,” he said.
A native of Flint, MI, and a current resident of Memphis, TN, Wallace has been writing and performing for over two decades. He attended Interlochen Arts Academy, where he studied theatrical arts, and SUNY Purchase Theatre Arts School in New York.
He has written and starred in several one-man shows featuring prominent African Americans, including Martin Luther King and Malcolm X.
Tuesday night’s performance was his first on CCC’s campus
“I thank (CCC) for having me here. I had a great time and I really enjoyed myself,” said Wallace.
CLICK HERE to view more photos from the play!