KEVIN BYRD FEATURED IN THE HISTORY CHANNEL’S “HONOR DEFERRED,” PRODUCED BY AL ROKER, HOSTED BY BERNIE MAC AND SAMUEL L. JACKSON
February 10, 2006 (PRLEAP.COM) Business News(New York, NY)— This February, Kevin Byrd will take over both stage and screen. The multi-talented actor/producer is featured in “Honor Deferred,” a History Channel event premiering on Saturday, February 11 at 8 p.m. This moving documentary, narrated by Samuel L. Jackson, hosted by Bernie Mac and produced by Al Roker, pays tribute to the only seven African-American World War II veterans to receive the Congressional Gold Medal Honor, 50 years after the war.
Byrd plays the legendary Lt. John R. Fox, who was honored posthumously by President Clinton in 1997 for his valor and military accomplishments along with six other incredible war heroes. During fighting in Europe, Lieutenant John Fox found himself completely surrounded by German forces. He called for U.S. artillery to be fired directly on his position, dooming himself to death but taking more than 100 German soldiers with him. “It’s truly an honor to portray Lt. Fox and bring life and recognition to this true American hero,” explains Byrd. “People need to know about these men and the contributions of African-Americans to our military and our way of life.”
These brave men were the only seven, out of one million African-American WWII soldiers, to be awarded for their service after an internal investigation uncovered a long-standing, high-level conspiracy within the U.S. government to obscure the contributions of African-American soldiers and keep them from public record. During the war, the African-American units received meager preparation for duty compared to white soldiers, and fought in segregated units, often commanded by white leaders who treated them poorly. These soldiers served their country valiantly despite facing these challenges but still none received the nation’s highest honor, until a half century later.
In addition to his History Channel debut, Byrd returns to the famous Nuyorican Poets Café with “Release,” his one-man stage show, on February 16-18, 2006. This three night encore is a follow up to his sold-out premiere in November 2005. This award-winning actor featured in ten independent movies is intent on making a name for himself in the film, television, theatre, and musical arenas.
“RELEASE” highlights the variety of emotions and struggles that men encounter; revealing a deep sense of self-exploration, whether it’s in love for self, family, or friendship; one suffers for the love of another. Byrd seamlessly portrays the conflicted emotions of five African-American men from different walks of life who are all battling internally and looking for their emotional “release.”
Byrd is a veteran to the stage; he has performed in off-Broadway musicals such as “Good-bye-Girl,” “West Side Story,” “A Chorus Line,” and “Wizard of Was.” Byrd has had actor credits in such films as City Games (independent film in Japan); Inside; Kevin’s Addiction; Nicole’s Choice (which garnered the Cinema Golden Eagle Award and the Freddie Award); and the award-winning “The Last Dayz.” Kevin Byrd wrote, produced and starred in “The Last Dayz,” with partner Blossom Brown of BrownByrd Productions; helping to spread awareness of prostate cancer, particularly in the African-American community. The film has reached a media circulation of over 10 million people via newspapers, TV, radio, and magazine headlines including Vibe.com, Hush Magazine, UrbanBuzz Magazine, The Amsterdam News. His image now graces the book jacket of a best-selling novel, “Things In Between,” by author Nathanial Portis, earning national distribution at bookstores including Barnes and Noble.
The Nuyorican Poets Café is located at 236 East 3rd St., between Avenues B and C. Visit www.kevbyrd.com for more information. Doors open at 6 p.m.; show time is 7 p.m.; and admission is $10.