As part of Main Street Chestertown’s “Dickens of a Christmas” weekend, actor and playwright Phil Darius Wallace will present his one-man show Self-Made Man: the Frederick Douglass Story in two seatings Saturday, Dec. 7.
The shows will take place at 1:00 and 3:00 p.m. at Sumner Hall, 206 S. Queen Street. Tickets to Saturday’s shows are FREE, but reservations are required and can be made online at mainstreetchestertown.org.
Earlier in the day on Saturday, the actor will be available for “Meet Mr. Douglas” sessions in the Dickens Welcome Center in The Bank, 211 High Street, where he will chat with visitors while in character. The day before, Friday, Dec. 6, Wallace will visit classes at Garnet Elementary and Kent County Middle School to perform parts of his show and talk to students.
Wallace premiered Self Made Man: The Frederick Douglass Story in 2014 at the ArcLight Theatre in New York. In the play, he portrays not only Douglass, the former slave from Talbot County who became the Victorian era’s most famous orator and abolitionist, but also some dozen other characters from his life, including his grandmother and a childhood mentor from his Eastern Shore beginnings, fellow abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison, and President Lincoln.
Wallace says his goal is to take the audience on a journey with Douglass, reconstructing the complexity and radiance of his spirit as he becomes the leader who captivated and inspired so many audiences around the country and in Great Britain. Relying on Douglass’ autobiographies, letters, speeches and other writings, Wallace’s script and performance capture the great abolitionist’s humor, outrage and charisma. (See Wallace on stage as Douglass here and here.)
About the actor: Phil Darius Wallace is a native of Flint Michigan and began his acting career with the Michigan Shakespeare Festival. He has studied theater at the Interlochen Arts Academy and at SUNY Purchase in New York. He has been a company member with Playhouse on the Square and Voices of the South and is currently a company member with Play Back Memphis and Tennessee Shakespeare. His film and TV credits include Brian Banks, The World We Make, Nothing but the Truth, ABC’s Nashville, the Hallmark Channel’s Wedding at Graceland, and NBC’s Bluff City Law. He also directed his own movie, 100 Lives, which is available on Amazon.
Mr. Wallace has traveled across the United States performing as Dr. Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, Langston Hughes, and Frederick Douglass. Mr. Wallace lives in Memphis with his wife and three children.