ARTS Pick: The Royale

Opening on May 17 at Live Arts, The Royale delivers knockout performances through June 8. Image; Martyn Kyle. Opening on May 17 at Live Arts, The Royale delivers knockout performances through June 8. Image; Martyn Kyle.

Ring true: Boxer Jack Johnson became the first African American world heavyweight champion, and at the height of the Jim Crow era he was “the most famous and the most notorious African American on Earth,” according to documentarian Ken Burns. Directed by multi-faceted artist and C-VILLE contributor Leslie Scott-Jones, The Royale, written by Marco Ramirez, is loosely based on Johnson’s story and delves into a boxer’s psyche as he faces the fight of the century when the sport was still racially segregated.

Through 6/8. $21-26, times vary. Live Arts, 123 E. Water St. 977-4177.