Join the Museum to honor the life, service, and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. over MLK Weekend, discovering the ongoing legacy of the American Revolution and learning what it takes to change the world, highlighted by a performance by the Philadelphia Jazz Project.
Wait Means Never: A Musical Exploration of MLK’s Letter from a Birmingham Jail
Performed by the Philadelphia Jazz Project | Included in Museum admission
Liberty Hall (third floor) | Saturday, Jan. 15 at 1 p.m.
Wait Means Never is an engaging intermingling of spoken word, singing, and instrumental music paying tribute to one of America’s greatest citizens and thinkers, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The hour-long performance by the Philadelphia Jazz Project will focus on his 1963 Letter from a Birmingham Jail, a timeless letter that is a profoundly engaging rumination on faith, race, community, justice, democracy, and humanity. This new work will utilize poetry and a combination of gospel, jazz, blues, soul, and hip hop music, as well as excerpts from King’s letter.
Meet James Forten Performances
Alan B. Miller Theater (second floor) | Daily, 1:15 & 3:15 p.m.
Experience the Museum's latest first-person theatrical performance, Meet James Forten, exploring Forten’s life as a free Black Philadelphian, Revolutionary War veteran, and abolitionist. Nathan Alford-Tate performs as Forten in his formative years while Darrell Willis portrays a reflective Forten later in life in the two separate performances written by playwright Marissa Kennedy.
"Brave Men as Ever Fought" Painting in Liberty
Patriots Gallery (first floor) | Daily
"Brave Men as Ever Fought" is one of nationally renowned historical artist Don Troiani's latest works, commissioned by the Museum with support from the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail. In the painting, young African American sailor Forten, later a stalwart in anti-slavery and abolitionist movements, looks on as Black and Native American troops in the ranks of the Continental Army’s Rhode Island Regiment kick up clouds of dust as they march on their way to Yorktown, Virginia, past crowds of Philadelphia residents lining Chestnut Street in front of the brick façade of the Pennsylvania State House. Nearly 50 years later, Forten penned a letter to his friend and fellow abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison, reflecting on the moment that Troiani depicted in the painting, writing, “I well remember that when the New England Regiment passed through this city on their way to attack the English Army under the command of Lord Cornwallis, there was several Companies of Coloured People, as brave Men as ever fought.”
Community Engagement Wall
Rotunda (first floor) | Daily
Learn how you can create change in your own community by taking a card and a cue from our community engagement wall in the rotunda.