Palm Arts: "Wings Of Courage," 6/11

Palm Arts​ presents ​”Wings of Courage,”​ an original play with live music based on the life of Eugene Bullard, the first African-American combat pilot and adventurer. The show takes place at the ​Michael D. Palm Theatre​ in Telluride on Saturday, May 11th, 2019 at 7 p.m,  with a special in school performance for regional students on Friday, May 10th. Advance tickets are $10 student; $20 adult. Tickets at the door are $15 student; $25 adult.

The impressive touring theater company, Mad River Theater Works​ from West Liberty, Ohio, presents the uplifting true story of Mr.Eugene Bullard in “Wings of Courage.”

Bullard’s story would be unbelievable if it were not all true.

Ballard was a professional boxer and a World War I flying ace. He was a jazz musician. He was a spy. And he was Black.

Born in Columbus, Georgia, Bullard traveled the world. He joined the French Foreign Legion after being denied a meaningful place in the United States Army where he rose through the ranks and flew against the famous “Red Baron” as a part of the famous Lafayette Escadrille during World War I. But when the Escadrille was incorporated into the new U.S. Army Air Corps in 1917, the color of Bullard’s skin prevented him from taking his place alongside the other American heroes of his day. But that didn’t stop him.

Ballard went on to fame as a bandleader in Paris in 1920’s.

Using storytelling, music, and drama, ​”Wings of Courage”​ shows how Bullard’s determination and perseverance helped him overcome discrimination throughout his remarkable life. It is an uplifting tale of vision and hope that deserves to be known by every American.

This special story will be presented by the socially conscious ​Mad River Theater Works​, a professional touring theater company with deep roots in the flat farm country of the Midwest. The troupe create plays that combine music and drama to tell stories about people from the back roads of small town America. ​

Mad River Theater Works​ believes they can make a difference by producing plays rooted in American history, and so examining the choices we face in a complex world. Their work focuses on the importance of culture and community and through theater they strive to challenge racism, xenophobia, sexism, and intolerance.

“We’re excited to have a group of artists coming to the Palm theatre that shares our belief that art and diversity in our communities makes a real difference in people’s lives,” says Palm Arts Programming Director Chris Vann, “This is a great chance to celebrate inclusiveness and tolerance through the lens of artistic endeavor.”

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