FERGUSON — THE PLAY
“Verbatim drama” would seem ideal for the nation’s capital, home to political theater and media hysteria. Verbatim drama, however, is formally categorized as documentary theater — actors read from real court testimonies, transcripts and other actual documents, yielding dramatic effects that can trump the work of a playwright. Which brings us to “Ferguson the Play,” a verbatim drama drawn from Grand Jury testimony surrounding the shooting death of Michael Brown. It recently debuted with a public reading in a theater not far from Capitol Hill, and will “show the truth the mainstream media is trying to hide,” according to producer Phelim McAleer, who says he only seeks to counter false narratives about the actual sequence of events. The parts of lawyers will be played by local attorneys.
“It’s important people hear and see the truth and cut through the myths, half truths and lies that have sprung up around Ferguson,” Mr. McAleer tells Inside the Beltway. “When you hear the description of the last minutes of Michael Brown’s life, it is gut wrenching. And when you see that ‘hands up don’t shoot’ is a lie, it brings a cascade of emotions.”
Mr. McAleer is a conservative filmmaker and investigative journalist who has produced multiple documentaries, including “Frack Nation,” which counters claims that the drilling process is an environmental harm; and “Not Evil Just Wrong,” a film which challenged the climate alarmism of “An Inconvenient Truth,” produced by Al Gore. “Ferguson, the Play,” meanwhile, will be formally staged in Los Angeles at month’s end; Mr. McAleer has already raised closed to $50,000 to bolster the project. After witnessing casting auditions, he still recalls powerful effect of gifted actors recreated the circumstances — verbatim.
“The play uses only testimony that the Grand Jury heard. It is going to expose the truth, a dramatic experience that will change hearts and minds,” he vows.