Uncovering the Untold Story of the Port Chicago 50

On this episode of Coffee and Convos, I had the immense pleasure of speaking with some incredible individuals— Cedric Darius (actor), David Shackelford (actor and cowriter), and Dennis Rowe (cowriter)—about their upcoming theater production of the powerful historical events of Port Chicago 50. Their passion for the subject was electric and their enthusiasm to discuss the experiences of our brave soldiers, their strong will to fight inequality, and—most of all—their firm commitment to inspire change left me truly inspired! As we shared stories and interacted, I felt the passion these three have for comprehending an issue that is still not completely understood today—I couldn’t help but feel a deep admiration for their drive and humility. Learn more about this momentous production, head on over now to reserve your ticket today!

Ticket information:

Theatre Row
42nd Street – New York
Opens February 23rd
Tickets at:
(212) 714-2442 ext 45

Cedric Darius (Spencer) is making his return to the stage in nearly three years. Off-Broadway:  Esther, The Musical (King Xerxes), Solitary Confinement (Mason Michaels); Regional Theatre: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (Brick Pollitt), Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center. Select film credits: Witness For The Defense: A Kenneth “Supreme” McGriff Story, 6 Train To Parkchester, and Forever Yours (film festival award winner). Select commercial credits: Rockport Shoes, Keeps, Citibank, and NYC Quit Today: Smoking Ad Campaign. Cedric was born and raised in Queens, and is a graduate of George Mason University. All praise, all honor, and all glory to God! @cedricdarius 

David Shackelford (Younger Freddie) is a native of Houston, Texas. His acting credits include such films as “Giving Worth”, “Conceal”, “If not for His Grace” and his own created short film “When”. He also studied under famed acting coach, Andrew Benne and has numerous musicals and plays in which he has performed in, “Kiss Me Kate”, Hello Dolly” and “A Few Good Men” to name a few. Not only is David an accomplished actor, but also an accomplished poet and Co-Writer of “Port Chicago 50.”

Dennis Rowe has an extensive theater background where he has written, produced, developed and directed over eight shows. Before the Covid pandemic hit, Mr. Rowe has just finished producing his show Port Chicago 50 in Santa Monica, California and was preparing for a four-week run in Chicago.

Prior to that, Port Chicago 50 performed Off-Off Broadway at the National Black Theater in New York.  He also produced his gospel show Don’t Mess With God . . . He’ll Wash Your Feet in 2017 and his original musical Philly – based on actual events in 2015.

Dennis expects to transfer to Broadway after it’s Off-Broadway run at Theatre Row. Additionally, he is preparing his musicals DMWG and Philly for 2023 performances in New York, and also prepping his show Shades for 2023/2024 performances in London.  He is currently pitching the movie version of Port Chicago 50 to tentatively begin filming in the Fall of 2023.  He was co-producer of the stage musical God’s Trying To Tell You Something which performed at the famed Hollywood Palladium and toured over 175 cities from Los Angeles to Florida to New York, starring Grammy Award winners Shirley Caesar, Edwin Hawkins, nominee Douglas Miller and Dennis Edwards from The Temptations. GTTTYS grossed over ten million dollars during its road tour.

In the film world, his movie If Not For His Grace was released in the fall of 2016 and recently aired on UPLift TV. The movie version of Don’t Mess With God. He’ll Wash Your Feet recently aired on zrowe TV (Mr. Rowe’s streaming network) and is being prepared for national distribution. Mr. Rowe recently acquired the option on the novel “The Poe Consequence” and developing it for the big screen. He is creator of the television serial Inc., which he is currently pitching, along with the reality shows Ordinary People, Play Ball and game show The Romance Game.

Dennis has written three books and is also producer of the radio soap opera, Trials.

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