Singin Wid A Sword In Ma Han is a musical docudrama; a story of love and the strength of the African American family during the time of slavery. The principle character, Topper, is a slave woman who recounts her family’s escape from slavery via the Underground Railroad. Spirtuals are a prominent vehicle in this story of self-determination: pointing the way, providing spiritual uplift and warnings, as well as instructions. These songs serve to effectively highlight the heretofore unsung heroes of the Underground Railroad, the everyday Black man and woman, slave and free, dismissively known as the Slave Grapevine. Singin is cast against the many dangers and countless acts of bravery and treason, in a slave family’s determination and journey to escape to freedom.
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