Best new play (2000)

Waiting to Be Invited

The sometimes bloody sit-ins that took place at "whites only" lunch counters throughout the South inspired dramatist S.M. Shephard-Massat to write Waiting to Be Invited, a tale of four unlikely heroes who put the Supreme Court's anti-segregationist rulings into practice. Largely conversational in tone, yet naggingly urgent in feel, the Denver Center Theatre Company's world-premiere production demonstrated that the everyday actions of ordinary folk are just as crucial to the fight for social justice as the vaunted declarations of philosophers, clerics and statesmen. And even though the play didn't culminate in a gripping, over-the-lunch-counter confrontation, Shephard-Massat emphatically made the point that standing up for equal rights means being willing to risk physical harm for the sake of mere belief. As DCTC patrons discovered nightly, that's an idea worth standing up for and cheering about.


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