When Martin Luther King Jr. offered his “I have a dream” speech, the FBI began to dream, too—about how they could discredit this man, who was described in an internal memo as the “most dangerous and effective Negro leader in the country.” Tracey Scott Wilson, best known for The Story, offers a fictionalized account of this moment of the civil rights movement with The Good Negro. Her play features a black reverend, James, bedeviled by government probes, segregationist aggression, personal struggles, and dissent from within his own cadre. Set in 1963 Alabama, the script follows James as he plans a nonviolent protest—with some very violent results. Liesl Tommy directs this speculative history lesson for the Public Theater.
Tuesdays, Sundays, 7 p.m.; Wednesdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Saturdays, Sundays, 2 p.m. Starts: March 3. Continues through April 19, 2009