Author James Baldwin is the subject of the new offering at the Lower East Side's Henry Street Settlement. The New Federal Theatre production, Howard Simon's James Baldwin: A Soul of Fire, opened OOB on April 6 and will run through April 30.
Charles Reese stars as Baldwin, the African-American novelist, essayist, playwright and activist whose many works include "Giovanni's Room," "The Fire Next Time" and "Go Tell It on the Mountain." The play is set in 1963 at a meeting between Baldwin and then Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy -- an occasion that actually took place. Together, the two, along with Lorraine Hansberry, Harry Belafonte and Lena Horne, discuss race relations, an issue then very much in the air and on the Kennedy administration's agenda.
Also in the cast is Forrest McClendon.
Tickets are $25. The Henry Street Settlement is located at 466 Grand Street in Manhattan. For information, call (212) 353-1176.
--By Robert Simonson