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The XIXth, (The Nineteenth)

The XIXth (The Nineteenth)

During their medal ceremony in the Olympic Stadium in Mexico City on October 16, 1968, two Black athletes, Tommie Smith and John Carlos, each raised a black-gloved fist during the playing of the US national anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner”.

While on the podium, Smith and Carlos, who had won gold and bronze medals respectively in the 200-meter running event of the 1968 Summer Olympics, turned to face the US flag and then kept their hands raised until the anthem had finished.

In addition, Smith, Carlos, and Australian silver medalist Peter Norman all wore human-rights badges on their jackets.

Inspired by these real events from the historic 19th Olympic Games, “The XIXth (The Nineteenth)” is a play that chronicles the intersection of sports and activism. It also shows the repercussions of being a champion who chooses to speak out.

Written by Golden Globe Award winner Kemp Powers and directed by NAACP Award winner Carl Cofield, San Diego’s Old Globe Theatre presents the world premiere of “The XIXth (The Nineteenth),” Mar. 17–Apr. 23, 2023.


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