It's the final weekend to get the blues in Minneapolis.
The Guthrie Theatre is staging Keith Glover's rhythm-'n'-blues tinged play, Thunder Knocking On The Door, until Mar. 28.
Marion McClinton directs the piece, about a family transformed by a mysterious, musical stranger.
On May 2, 1997 the American Theatre Critics Association bestowed its Betty Osborn Award for an emerging playwright on Glover's Thunder. Only four days later, May 6, 1997, CT's Yale Repertory Theatre officially opened its production of the musical drama.
Glover's play takes place in 1966 and concerns the family of a great but undiscovered bluesman who dies from black lung disease. With his family in financial and emotional need, in steps Marvell Thunder, a guitar wielding stranger who may be their salvation -- or ruination. Eric Riley stars as Marvell Thunder, alongside Cheryl Alexander, Robert Barry Fleming, Lovette George, and Charles Weldon. Designing the show are Neil Patel (set), Michael Alan Stein (costumes) and Chris Akerlind (lighting). A five-piece band backs the show, led by Anderson Edwards on bass.
Glover's other works include Dancing On Moonlight (NY Shakespeare Festival, 1995), Coming Of The Hurricane, and In Walks Ed. Also an actor, Glover appeared in Baltimore Center Stage's Two Trains Running.
According to an interview with Simon Saltzman in This Month ON STAGE magazine (Nov. 1996), Glover discovered theatre when his mother took him to see For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When The Rainbow Is Enuf. An athletic high school student, in 1981 Glover wrote a play about football that came to the attention of New York's Young Playwrights Festival, where he was especially encouraged by mentor Ruth Goetz (The Heiress).
For tickets ($15-$36) and information on Thunder Knocking On The Door at The Guthrie Theatre, 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis, call (612) 377-2224.
After Thunder, the Guthrie will offer Much Ado About Nothing (April 3-May 10, opening April 15), directed by Joe Dowling.