Jason Robert Brown, Co-Creator of Parade the Leo Frank Musical
Today is the centennial or 100th Anniversary of Mary Phagan’s murder that occurred so long ago on Confederate Memorial Day, Saturday, April 26, 1913, in Atlanta, Georgia. Every level of the United States legal system reviewing the case from 1913 to 1986, has essentially sustained that thirteen-year-old Mary Anne Phagan was murdered by her factory boss, Leo Frank. But here is what Jewish-American playwright, Jason Robert Brown, the co-author of the Leo Frank Musical, ‘Parade’, says about Mary Phagan and Leo Frank on April 26, 2013:
IN MEMORY OF MARY PHAGAN (Jason Robert Brown)
Today – April 26, 2013 – marks the one hundredth anniversary of the murder of Mary Phagan in the basement of the National Pencil Company in Atlanta, Georgia on the day of the Confederate Memorial Day Parade. I have spent many years carrying the facts of that day around in my head, and I have always felt it was a very serious responsibility to be asked to give voice to Mary and to Leo Frank, her employer and the man falsely accused of her murder. There are people in the world today who know about this case because of the musical that Alfred Uhry and I wrote; I am deeply honored by the opportunity I was given.
[Commentary: Dear Jason Robert Brown, in recent years, the revival of your musical to international acclaim and fame, even cult status amongst thespians, after a mostly tepid beginning, is indeed most impressive, but are the facts of this case that you claim to carry around in your head, the facts of the official record? And do you even care if the facts in your head are incorrect or based on lies spread by your fellow ethnoreligious tribesmen? The thought and question students of the Frank case ask themselves after reading your blog post is this: If Jason Robert Brown cares so much about Mary Phagan, why does he continue to perpetuate the falsehood that Mary Phagan was murdered in the Basement and that Leo Frank was innocent? Mary Phagan was certainly found dead after she was dumped in the rear of the National Pencil Company basement, but what did the forensic evidence in the metal room reveal about where she was initially killed? Clearly you believe Mary Phagan was murdered in the basement of the National Pencil Company, but did you ever bother to review the testimony and exhibits of the Leo Frank Trial Brief of Evidence (1913), especially concerning the hair with dried blood tangled around the solid iron handle of a bench lathe in the metal room (The room which is located on the second floor, not the basement)? Were you aware that Phagan’s hair was discovered on the bench lathe belonging to R. P. Barret, precisely when his hand reached for the handle of it on Monday morning, April 28, 1913 (Atlanta Journal, Monday Evening, April 28, 1913). Did you ever bother to review the evidence and eye witness accounts of the 5″ inch wide fan shaped blood stain on the floor of the metalroom, specifically found on Monday morning, April 28, 1913, just diagonal and adjacent to the door of the only bathroom on the second floor? Were you aware the only bathroom on the second floor was located in the metalroom? Were you aware the metalroom is located at the rear of the second floor, opposite of Leo Frank’s office at the front section of the second floor (Defendant’s Exhibit 61 and State’s Exhibit A, Leo Frank Trial Brief of Evidence, 1913)? The Leo Frank Trial Brief of Evidence, 1913, has both defense and prosecution witnesses describing blood on the floor in the metal room, adjacent to and diagonal to the bathroom door, were they all lying? Is the Leo Frank Case one vast anti-Semitic Conspiracy?]
I didn’t have a child when I wrote Parade, and now I have two. Two beautiful little girls who, a hundred years later, live a life that would have been unimaginable to Mary Phagan, but who carry my dreams and hopes inside them as surely as Mary carried her mother’s.
[Commentary: Jason Robert Brown, How would you feel if someone made millions of dollars using your beaten, murdered and raped daughters as a cheap plot device in a Broadway Musical to rehabilitate a real life serial pedophile and convicted child killer, that bludgeoned, raped and strangled them? Because that is exactly what you did in your Leo Frank musical, ‘Parade’. ]
This previously unreleased recording of the Funeral Sequence from Parade features the Los Angeles Master Chorale, conducted by their music director Grant Gershon. Playing the role of Frankie Epps is Brian d’Arcy James.
[Commentary: Jason Robert Brown, The real life “Frankie Epps” – George W. Epps – on Monday afternoon, April 28, 1913, reported to the Atlanta police, that Mary Phagan had told him on the trolley ride into the city on April 26, 1913, that she feared Leo Frank’s creepy pestering and sexual harassment. Was he lying? Where the other 19 former female child laborers, who testified at the trial, lying when they said Leo Frank had a bad character for lasciviousness?]
Original Article and Music by Jason Robert Brown:
References to Facts and Evidence of the Case:
Diagrams of the National Pencil Company on 37-41 South Forsyth Street, Atlanta, Georgia.
Defendant’s Exhibit 61, Leo Frank Trial Brief of Evidence, 1913.
State’s Exhibit A, Leo Frank Trial Brief of Evidence, 1913.
Atlanta’s Local Media “Frenzy”:
After reading the three competing local Atlanta Georgia newspapers from 1913 to 1915 (Georgian, Constitution, Journal), it is time for you to decide the truth, first as the Judge and Jury, and secondly, then as the Georgia Supreme Court Justices, to determine whether or not, the verdict rendered against Leo Frank was correct and should stand:
1. You are now the Judge and Jury, read the official Leo Frank Trial Brief of Evidence from beginning to end, sifting it and pass your verdict. Would you leave the verdict of the jury and judge undisturbed?
2. You are now the Georgia Supreme Court, read the Leo Frank Supreme Court Records in either individual images or PDF, from beginning to end, sifting it and pass your verdict. Would you leave the verdict of the jury and judge undisturbed?
Open Discussion Forum:
To discuss the Leo Frank Case, join Brooklyn College Professor Allen Koenigsberg’s, Leo Frank Case Discussion Group, from ‘Leo Frank Case: Open or Closed’, website: http://www.LeoFrankCase.com (The Leo Frank Research Library is not affiliated with Professor Allen Koenigsberg or his Leo Frank Case website/yahoo group.)
Read one scathing review of the Leo Frank Musical Parade: https://www.leofrank.org/parade/
Last Updated: April 26, 2013.