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August Wilson

WNYC Digital

Listen: Clarke Peters and Ebony Jo-Ann in August Wilson's 'Ma Rainey's Black Bottom'

Sunday, May 03, 2015

The third installment in our 10-play series is set in 1927. As blues singer Ma Rainey and her band record an album in a Chicago studio, questions of race, art and exploitation emerge.

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WNYC Digital

Before there was 'Empire', there was August Wilson: Listen to Taraji P. Henson in Wilson's 'Joe Turner's Come and Gone'

Sunday, April 26, 2015

The second installment in our 10-play series of dramatic readings tells the story of migrants who pass through a Pittsburgh boardinghouse during the Great Migration of the 1910s.

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WNYC Digital

Listen to Phylicia Rashad as Aunt Ester in August Wilson's 'Gem of the Ocean'

Sunday, April 26, 2015

In the first of our 10-play August Wilson series of dramatic readings, a man visits a 285-year-old renowned cleanser of souls to absolve the guilt he carries from a crime he committed. 

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The Greene Space

1900: Gem of the Ocean | Directed by Kenny Leon

Friday, April 24, 2015

A young man from Alabama visits Aunt Ester, a 285-year-old renowned cleanser of souls for help in absolving the guilt he carries from a crime he’s committed. Audio now available.

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The Greene Space

1910: Joe Turner’s Come and Gone | Directed by Phylicia Rashad

Friday, April 24, 2015

Set in a Pittsburgh, the story of Seth and Bertha Holly and the migrants who pass through their boardinghouse during the Great Migration of the 1910s. Audio available now.  

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The Greene Space

1920: Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom | Directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson

Friday, April 24, 2015

Set in Chicago in 1927, the play explores issues of race, art, religion and the historic exploitation of black recording artists by white producers. Available now.

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The Greene Space

1930: The Piano Lesson | Directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson

Friday, April 24, 2015

Set in 1936 Pittsburgh, the story of a brother and sister who have different ideas on what to do with the piano they own - keep or sell it. Audio release date: Sun, May 10. 

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The Greene Space

1940: Seven Guitars | Directed by Stephen McKinley Henderson

Friday, April 24, 2015

The story of a blues singer just released from prison and ready to right the past year's wrongs. Audio release date: Sun, May 17.

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The Greene Space

1950: Fences | Directed by Kenny Leon

Friday, April 24, 2015

Set in 1950s Pittsburgh, the story of Troy Maxson, a restless trash-collector and former baseball athlete struggling to provide for his family. Audio release date: Sun, May 24.

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The Greene Space

1960: Two Trains Running | Directed by Michele Shay

Friday, April 24, 2015

The story of a local diner owner who fights to stay open as a municipal project encroaches on his establishment. Audio release date: Sun, May 31.

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The Greene Space

1970: Jitney | Directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson

Friday, April 24, 2015

Set in a worn-down gypsy cab station in Pittsburgh, the story of men hustling to make a living as jitneys — unofficial and unlicensed taxi cabs. Audio release date: Sun, June 7.

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The Greene Space

1980: King Hedley II | Directed by Michele Shay

Friday, April 24, 2015

The story of an ex-convict trying to rebuild his life by selling stolen refrigerators so that he can save enough money to buy a video store. Audio release date: Sun, June 14.

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The Greene Space

1990: Radio Golf | Directed by Marion McClinton

Friday, April 24, 2015

A powerful African-American politician runs for the highest office of his career, but as he steps into prominence, his plans collide with his past. Audio release date: Sun, June 21.

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WNYC News

August Wilson, the American Shakespeare

Friday, February 20, 2015

“His body of work really covers the whole 20th century of American history,” said filmmaker Sam Pollard.

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The Greene Space

Video: August Wilson Talk Series - Reminiscences

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

August Wilson's loved ones share personal memories of him, on and off stage. Featuring Constanza Romero, Wilson's widow; Ruben Santiago-Hudson, Stephen McKinley Henderson and more.

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The Greene Space

Video: August Wilson Talk Series - Religion, Spirituality and Africa

Friday, September 27, 2013

The playwright often used his characters to explore the transformative power of embracing one’s identity and ancestral lineage. A conversation hosted by WQXR's Terrance McKnight.

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The Greene Space

Video: August Wilson Talk Series - The Women of the Century Cycle

Sunday, September 22, 2013

The male characters may be the central drivers of the narratives in Wilson's work, but it's the women who are considered the theatrical backbone. Hosted by Charisse Jones.

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The Greene Space

Video: August Wilson Talk Series - The Lloyd Richards Effect

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Lloyd Richards championed August Wilson’s plays and directed six of them on Broadway. WNYC’s Leonard Lopate explored one of the most successful artistic partnerships in American theater.

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The Greene Space

Video: Poet Sonia Sanchez on August Wilson

Friday, September 20, 2013

Groundbreaking poet and playwright Sonia Sanchez opened our presentation of "The Piano Lesson" with reflections on August Wilson and his legacy.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

August Wilson Cycle

Friday, September 20, 2013

WNYC's The Greene Space is in the midst of presenting all ten plays that form August Wilson's American Century Cycle. Artistic director Ruben Santiago Hudson, actor and associate artistic director Stephen McKinley Henderson, and the project’s audio theater producer Arthur Yorinks talk about the playwright and his work, its depiction of African American history, and the process of converting stage productions to radio drama.

→Check ticket availability for the remaining performances at The Greene Space.

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