The Little Tommy Parker Celebrated Colored Minstrel Show

Six black minstrel players in a Pullman porter railroad car on a cold winter’s afternoon in February, 1895, outside the rural town of Hannibal Missouri, wait for showtime to arrive.  The chilly wind blows outside as they pass the time with stories and memories. Suddenly one member, Percy, so far absent, bursts in and collapses on the floor. When the troupe realizes their friend has been chased by a white mob, they must find a way to protect him and themselves. Fear, anxiety and deep honesty surface as these black men blacken their faces with burnt cork, trying to allow their friend to avoid detection. The white mob realizes where Percy is and shows up at the train where Percy goes out to face them, hoping to save the others.

Published by Dramatists Play Service

Cast & Crew

produced by The Negro Ensemble Company at the Equity Library Theater in New York City, March, 1991

Written by Carlyle Brown
Directed by Douglas Turner Ward


Douglas Turner Ward as Henry
O.L. Duke as Tambo
Helmar Augustus Cooper as Doc
Ed Wheeler as Soloman
Kevin Smith as Archie
Charles Weldon as Percy


Set design by Michael Odell Green
Costume design by Gregory Glenn
Lighting design by William H. Grant III
Sound design by Selina Dixon
Choreography by Dianne McIntyre

Premiered by Penumbra Theatre Company in St. Paul, Minnesota

Written by Carlyle Brown
Directed by Lou Bellamy


James Craven as Henry
James A. Williams as Tambo
Marion McClinton as Doc
Danny Clark as Soloman
Bill McIntyre as Archie
Terry Bellamyas Percy
Wayne Murphy as Baker


Set design by Ken Evans
Costume design by Deidrea Whitlock
Choreography by Lewis Whitlock
Production manager: W.J.E. Hammer