Worlds apart from the relatively lightweight musicals of the season, Golden Boy tackled tough issues such as racial discrimination. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who saw the show soon after it opened, praised the production’s unflinching picture of black life in America…. At the height of the civil rights movement—and despite death threats, from which producer Hillard Elkins tried to shield star Sammy Davis, Jr.—Golden Boy opened in October 1964 at the Majestic Theatre. It was a hit, running for 569 performances and receiving four Tony Award nominations.
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