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Val Gray Ward, ‘the Martin Luther King of the theater community in Chicago,’ dies

Posted on AllSides April 23rd, 2024
From The Center

An accomplished actress, director and producer, Val Gray Ward founded Kuumba, a pioneering African American theater company in Chicago. “I like to call her the Martin Luther King of the theater community in Chicago,” said Jackie Taylor, the founder and CEO of Chicago’s Black Ensemble Theater Company. “She had nationalism and tenacity at a time when our voices were being stifled and disrespected.” Ward, 91, died on March 7 at Northwestern Medicine Palos Hospital in Palos Heights after suffering an infection, said her son, Babatu Gray. She was a resident...

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