DENVER (CBS4) – “One Night in Miami,” a play that’s an intimate look at four very public figures, is now playing at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts.

Singer Sam Cooke, NFL running back Jim Brown, activist Malcolm X and boxer Cassius Clay — what would happen if these iconic men were in the same room? That’s exactly what did happen the night that Cassius Clay won the heavyweight championship title.

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In playwright Kemp Powers’ “One Night in Miami,” the audience gets a look inside the room as the four men talk about what it means to be black in America.

“It’s a fascinating look at regular men in revolutionary times,” said Jason Delane, who plays Malcolm X. “It’s a dream role.”

Colby Lewis plays the 22-year-old Cassius Clay.

“It’s terrifying, but also wonderful at the same time,” Lewis said.

One Night in Miami (credit: CBS)

One Night in Miami (credit: CBS)

Morocco Omari is football player Jim Brown.

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“The thing that I most admire about him is his mental strength,” Omari said.

Nik Walker plays crooner Sam Cooke.

“The real challenge of it is not to play the Sam Cooke that you’ve seen on TV, or the Sam Cooke that you hear in his records, but the Sam that is written in this text,” Walker said.

In the text they argue with each other, pushing past their public persona to reveal the essence of the man underneath.

“These guys all want some kind of freedom, some kind of acceptance, some kind of love, and some kind of fairness,” Omari said. “I think we all want that as human beings still today.”

The conversation is as relevant today as it was 50 years ago.

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(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

“One Night in Miami” is at the Space Theatre of the Denver Performing Arts Complex through April 19. For tickets and information call (303) 893-4100 or visit denvercenter.org.