It's a sweltering August night in New York City in 1937. In the distance can be heard the crackle of another lightening storm which is threatening to further postpone the main event. The crowd is full of celebrities. From the world of Entertainment, Douglas Fairbanks Senior, George Raft and Al Johnson. Representing Baseball, the legendary Babe Ruth. Former boxing greats Gene Tunney and Jack Dempsey rub shoulders with New Your Mayor La Guardia and the Marquess of Queensbury. Also there are the mobsters who control boxing, who control New York itself. Two young men, exactly the same age, stride into the centre of the ring. Both carry the great weight of expectation and aspiration of their respective peoples. Across the States, African Americans are gathered around their radio sets to cheer on Joe Louis. The Brown Bomber is the grandson of an Alabama slave. In the USA boxing has long been the domain of white athletes. Once again he has to prove to himself and the rest of the nation that he is the best in the world. All over Britain people meet in the middle of the night to support Tommy Farr. Tommy is the son of an Irish, bare-knuckle fighter who had been attracted to Wales by the mines. One boxing expert has given Tommy as much chance of beating Louis as Shirley Temple! Tommy has chosen to risk losing his life in the free air rather than die like so many of his friends have whilst mining underground. As his mentor Joby Churchill said, 'What's the difference between murder above ground as below it'. Many homes have families huddled around crystal sets, others have banded together in Clubs, singing and dancing until the moment arrives and the room grows silent.
ACT1 SCENE 1