Last Chance: Fences Comes Down May 16 at Pittsburgh Public

News   Last Chance: Fences Comes Down May 16 at Pittsburgh Public
 
Playwright-actor John Henry Redwood ends his return visit to the Pittsburgh Public Theater, recreating the role of Troy Maxson in colleague August Wilson's Fences, May 16.

Playwright-actor John Henry Redwood ends his return visit to the Pittsburgh Public Theater, recreating the role of Troy Maxson in colleague August Wilson's Fences, May 16.

The revival began previews April 8 and opened April 16.

The drama, about a fiercely embittered garbage hauler whose earlier dreams in the Negro baseball league were thwarted, was a hit at the Pennsylvania nonprofit in 1989, with Redwood. The actor subsequently played the role in seven different productions.

The closing date of the Pulitzer Prize- and Tony Award-winning drama, which pits father against son, reflects a one-week extension, due to ticket demand.

Wilson, a Pittsburgh native, set his play in the city's Hill District in 1957. Wilson himself returns to Pittsburgh in December 1999 for the world premiere of his new work, King Hedley II, which will play the company's newly-built downtown venue, the O'Reilly Theater. "Before we added that extra week, we were at 90 percent capacity," Public publicist Tim Colbert told Playbill On-Line. "Pittsburgh loves August Wilson; he's the hometown favorite."

The cast of Fences, directed by Marion Isaac McClinton, includes James Williams, Ami Brabson, Keith Glover, Cortez Nance Jr., Kaitlyn Findley, P. Danielle Mason and Lloyd Goodman. Director McClinton will also stage King Hedley II for the Public.

Glover, who plays Troy's elder son Lyons, is the young actor-playwright who wrote the regionally popular Thunder Knocking on the Door.

Fences designers are David Gallo (set), Michael Krass (costumes) and Tom Sturge (lighting).

Tickets are $15-$36. For information, call (412) 321-9800.

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The April 8 preview weekend of Redwood's acting job in Pittsburgh coincided with the April 9 opening in Cleveland of his play, The Old Settler, at the Cleveland Play House.

The warm-hearted, bittersweet comedy about middle-aged ladies who take in a handsome boarder continues to May 9 in Ohio.

-- By Kenneth Jones and David Lefkowitz

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