The Theater: New Play in Manhattan, Nov. 15, 1948

Set My People Free (by Dorothy Heysvard; produced by the Theatre Guild) rewrites a forgotten episode of history—an aborted Negro uprising in early 19th Century Charleston. It is honest and occasionally eloquent. Yet the drama it promises never quite blazes forth, and its large themes are never really vitalized.

The play tells of Denmark Vesey (Juano Hernandez), a slave who earned his freedom and conspired to set his people free. Secretly gaining thousands of followers, he particularly sought out an influential head slave named George Wilson (Canada Lee), who was torn between his race and a kind master. In a nightmare of...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!