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Join Stephens Auditorium in Virtual Nationwide Watch Party of John Lewis: Good Trouble Documentary

DATE:                   Thursday, September 17, 2020

Who:                     John Lewis:  Good Trouble documentary

Where:                Virtual Nationwide Watch Party with livestreamed panel discussion

When:                  Monday, September 21, 2020

Time:                    6:00 pm

Tickets:                $12 for film link with $5 being donated to Stephens Auditorium

Stephens Auditorium, managed by VenuWorks has joined 60+ other cultural institutions around the country in participating in a nationwide watch party of “John Lewis:  Good Trouble,” a recently released documentary that examines the life and accomplishments of the Georgia congressman and civil rights leader who died of cancer July 20.

Released this summer, the documentary features archival photographs, rare video and candid conversations with Lewis and fellow politicians and activists. It tracks the Alabama native’s rise in the civil rights movement and his long career in Congress, where he introduced the bill creating the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

The cost to participate is $12 with $5 being donated to Stephens Auditorium. Patrons have 30 days to start the film once they have rented it and 72 hours to finish it once the streaming starts. Registration is available through this link or by going the Stephens Auditorium website at

In addition to the documentary, patrons will get access to videos of Oprah Winfrey interviewing Lewis shortly before his death and of director Dawn Porter with two of the original Freedom Riders — activists, including Lewis, who rode buses throughout the South in 1961 to challenge segregation.

The program concludes with a live virtual discussion Sept. 21 at 7 p.m. with Porter, Smithsonian Secretary Lonnie G. Bunch III, Newark Mayor Ras Baraka and Khalil Gibran Muhammad, professor of history, race and public policy at Harvard University.  To attend the live virtual discussion, use this link: and on the drop down list under “Other,” enter Stephens Auditorium.

“As a member of the International Association of Venue Managers (IAVM), we were given the opportunity to participate in this national watch program,” said Tammy Koolbeck, Stephens Auditorium’s Executive Director.  “The New Jersey Performing Arts Center put this program together and then shared it with other PAC’s across the country to help expand potential audiences and activate current audiences for this important and timely documentary on social issues.”

Director Dawn Porter was delighted to work with the network of cultural centers to offer a collective — if virtual — viewing experience, one she says Lewis would have loved.

“This idea of a collective viewing is unexpected and brilliant. It shows the creativity of arts institutions,” she said. “I think we’ve seen how much we need the arts these days. They are essential. This confirms that.”

For more information, please email or call 515-294-2479.

Tammy Koolbeck, Iowa State Center, 515-294-8809, email:

Submitted by Iowa State Center, Stephens Auditorium

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