About the Book
In 1964, a white man walks into a public restroom in a Washington, DC park looking for sex. The next man who enters is a black man.
In what seems at first to be a simple encounter, The Seat Next to the King explores the lives of two men from the pages of history who literally sat next to the most powerful men in America–Bayard Rustin, a friend to Martin Luther King Jr. who organized the March on Washington, and Walter Jenkins, top aide and friend to President Lyndon Johnson. An exploration of sexuality, race, and masculinity, The Seat Next to the King imagines a meeting between two men, burdened by their prejudices and inner conflicts, as they attempt to find a connection.
News & Reviews
“The script is taut, tense and full of nuance about race, sexuality, power and dignity… ” —NOW Magazine
“Exploring sexuality, race, and masculinity, this play imagines a meeting between two men — Bayard Rustin, a friend to Martin Luther King, Jr., and Walter Jenkins, top aide and friend to President Lyndon Johnson — who are looking for sex in a public washroom in 1964 Washington, DC.” —Prairie Books Now
About the Author
Steven Elliot Jackson is an award-winning playwright and the co-artistic director of Minmar Gaslight Productions and its family theatre company, 3 Little Bears Productions. The Seat Next to the King won Best New Play and Patron’s Pick at The Toronto Fringe in 2017. Jackson’s previous playwriting credits include The State of Tennessee, Brothers and Arms, The Dark Part of the Snow, Real Life Superhero, Rapunzel (adaptation from the work of Geri Gans), and Threesome: An Evening Of One Acts. Steven was born and raised in the very small town of Minto, Manitoba and went to the University of Regina to study theatre and film before moving to Toronto.