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Crispus Attucks play to leave legacy in classrooms after curtain falls



Indianapolis, Indiana – After the performance ends and the cheers subside, the makers of “A Touch of Glory” hope that their creations will continue to be taught in Indianapolis schools.

The drama examines the renowned Crispus Attucks basketball squad from 1955, which broke down barriers. With a roster made up entirely of Black pupils, the Tigers, led by future Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson, became the first Indiana High School basketball champions.

The show takes place over six days in February, which falls on the same dates as NBA All-Star Weekend and Black History Month. In contrast to most stage plays, “A Touch of Glory”‘s producers, director, and other collaborators are not trying to prevent alternative readings. Rather, they hope that in the years to come, the story will take on a new life on stages all around the state.

“Once we debut it, we also going to make it available for free to Indiana high school drama departments,” Producer Terrance Asante-Doyle said. “(It’s free to) anybody who wants to tell the story.”

The play’s creators are also working on a companion curriculum that schools can implement.

Indianapolis Public Schools, which partnered with the production and hosted the world premiere at Attucks, have demonstrated their support for the project and its educational legacy. A community preview weekend beginning on February 9th and a special showing for Attucks alumni the following weekend are planned.

“The story is just a gateway to connect people to this piece of history,” Asante-Doyle shared. “So, what we’re doing with the curriculum is using the story, but building out what this period looked like. Also, some of the struggles, (because) let’s be real – there were a lot of struggles, and we don’t often hear about our triumphs as people of color during this period. And so we’re trying to approach it from a different lens.”

Although Asante-Doyle was hesitant to provide any plot details before to the play’s premiere, it is evident that the storyline has a level of intensity that transcends beyond sports drama given the minimum required viewing age of 13.

“In 1927, the Ku Klux Klan established Crispus Attucks,” Asante-Doyle says. “We talk about how just that in itself, the students, the staff took this and shaped it into an opportunity versus an obstacle.”

The play begins on February 9 at 8 p.m.