For people outside of Indianapolis, the focus of NBA All-Star Weekend next month will be an offense-only exhibition game between the league’s biggest stars. But the expansive festivities surrounding the game in Indianapolis will essentially be a celebration of Black excellence. The league has come to embrace the way its players have pushed the sport into the realms of Black culture, including music, fashion, cuisine, acting and art. A cavalcade of Black celebrities will be on hand as Indianapolis becomes a cultural magnet.
One of the many events timed to coincide with all-star festivities is the debut run of a play about the 1955 Crispus Attucks High School basketball team, led by Oscar Robertson, that became the nation’s first all-Black squad to win an open state tournament. Titled “A Touch of Glory,” the play will be performed at the high school, just north of downtown’s core. For the IBJ Podcast this week, IBJ arts and entertainment writer Dave Lindquist hosts a conversation with playwright Laura Town and director Deborah Asante. They discuss the production and the achievements of Robertson and his teammates, who excelled despite having no home court—and some being displaced from their actual homes.
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