Searching for Answers to Racism in McLean

Searching for Answers to Racism in McLean

Daryl Davis headlines McLean Community Center’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. event


Where and When: McLean Community Center’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Celebration featuring Daryl Davis on Sunday, Jan. 16, 2 p.m.  Event is at McLean Community Center, Alden Theatre, 1234 Ingleside Ave, McLean, VA 22101, 

Tickets: $10/$5 MCC district residents. Visits www.mcleancenter,org or call 703-790-0123.

Headlining the McLean Community Center (MCC) Dr. Martin Luther King Holiday celebration is Daryl Davis, international recording artist, lecturer on race relations and author of “Klan-Destine Relationships.” He will share his captivating journey to untangle racism and how some can hate, one civil conversation at a time. 

“Years ago, I heard a couple of podcast episodes of “Love and Radio” featuring this amazing Black man — Daryl Davis — who had befriended and collected robes of KKK members. There’s a documentary about him entitled ‘Accidental Courtesy,’ and that encapsulates the approach we could all use right now. It’s the right time for Daryl Davis to be part of the MCC’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration to refocus us on civil dialogues.” said Sarah Shallern Treff, director, performing arts, MCC.


Daniel Phoenix Singh, Executive Director, McLean Community Center


“As a musician myself, something I love about Mr. Davis’s experience is that it all started with music. Davis is an accomplished boogie-woogie pianist, and music is what helped break down barriers — it was while playing a gig that a KKK member approached Mr. Davis about his impressive piano playing, which in turn opened the door to civil discourse,” added Shallern Treff.

For Daniel Phoenix Singh, MCC Executive Director, “MCC’s tagline is the ‘The center of it all,’ and we take that as both a vision as well as a goal. To be a center of it all and a center for all is indeed what makes MCC such an amazing regional anchor. Being an anchor comes with the responsibility of stabilizing our community even amid strong crosswinds such as the multiple pandemics of COVID-19, racial tension, and dog whistles of white supremacy.” 

“We are committing to centering equity and justice in every single aspect of the work we do. We are not the experts, and we ask for and give ourselves permission to learn, fail, pick up, dust off and start over again as many times as it is needed.” added Singh. 

Inviting audiences to the Dr. King Holiday event with Daryl Davis, Singh said “I would say come with an open mind, realize that we are all in this together, and that we will get to the other side. Mr. Davis has modeled what listening and civil discourse looks like and he has used the arts as a path to humanize these conversations. Come be vulnerable with us, we promise you, we will all grow through this experience together.”