EMMETT TILL PLAYERS
New Generation ETP Geori Tere' ~ No Justice No Peace
In 1973, Mamie Till-Mobley, the mother of slain Civil Rights martyr, Emmett Till, was asked by her principal to create a Black History Month school assembly for her students at Carter Elementary. This simple request would be the catalyst for her inspired creation of what would become “The Emmett Till Players”; an indefatigable touring troupe of young students who would travel across the country using the words of Martin Luther King, Jr. to deliver stirring speeches of hope, unity, and determination to thousands. Mamie’s creation of The Emmett Till Players served a variety of functions, but her creative usage of the speeches of Dr. King, and the direction of her students for public performances, was an invaluable encouragement to each of the young people she taught throughout the years. Her message was similar to Dr. King’s message…‘Go forth into the world and strive to be anything you want to be!’ And though this challenge to our children may seem simple and logical, it has often served as the major driving force behind the success of hundreds of her former Emmett Till Players across the globe.
EMMETT TILL PLAYER TESTIMONIALS
“Ma Mobley saw something in me—in all of us really—that even our parents didn’t necessarily see. One of the things I learned about being an Emmett Till Player was how to be a real man. If you check the first to the last boys in The Emmett Till Players you’ll find we’ve never been in trouble with the law, we’re family men, and the vast majority of us are even ordained ministers. So we carry being an Emmett Till Player as a badge of honor. It makes you feel good knowing you were a part of something very special.”
~ Minister Quentis Richardson
“Ma Mobley would quote: 'In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths' before we put one foot on stage. I never knew what that meant until I got older. That’s when I realized what she had been saying…and what Dr. King’s specific words truly meant to our people. She would tell me, “Now when you do your speech, Brother Willie…you need to let the Preacher that’s inside of you out'
and I did!"
~ Minister Willie Richardson, Jr.
“Because of my experiences as an Emmett Till Player and training with Mother Mobley, I feel I can stand up in front of any crowd and say anything…As a prosecutor . . . All I can think about is her [Mamie’s] voice telling me just do your best.”
~ Natalia Moore, Assistant State Attorney
“I was in what we call ‘the first generation’ of Emmett Till Players. How tears would roll down her cheeks when she talked about Emmett and she’d flash those big, reassuring smiles of encouragement to her students that would sustain us for a lifetime. Everyone loved Mother Mobley so much...because she represented love and she was a phenomenal woman.”
~ Rene Malave, 1st Generation ETP