The Last Year in the Life of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., as Devised by Waterwell: A Rock Operetta — or The / King / Operetta for short — highlights and celebrates some of the immensely powerful moments of King’s last year. Drawing from speeches, interviews, private notes and the various movements of the day, the show follows King and his contemporaries through turbulent and quiet moments, weaving in songs of rock, blues, folk and funk as inspired by the ground-breaking music of 1967/68.
The production had a full run at the Barrow Street Theater in the summer of 2007, and was called “Extraordinary. Brilliant. Raucous. One of the best musicals of the year” by New York Magazine. (7/07)
Here, Rodney Gardner performs Drum Major from Waterwell’s The / King / Operetta at a live performance at Trinity College, CT. The lyrics of the piece come directly from King’s profound “Drum Major” speech, given February 4th, 1968.