The Public Theater Tells Wilson's Story, a Journalism Thriller, Opening Dec. 10

News   The Public Theater Tells Wilson's Story, a Journalism Thriller, Opening Dec. 10
 
Tracey Scott Wilson's urban newspaper drama, The Story, a co-production between The Public Theater and Long Wharf Theatre starring Phylicia Rashad and Erika Alexander, opens Dec. 10 at the Public in Manhattan.

Phylicia Rashad (left) and Erika Alexander in The Story
Phylicia Rashad (left) and Erika Alexander in The Story Photo by Michal Daniel

The Story concerns an African-American reporter (Alexander) who searches for the truth behind the brutal murder of a white man. When she apparently stumbles onto the perpetrator, lines form at the newspaper, increasing tension between the paper's news section (called Metro) and the upbeat "black" section (called Outlook, edited Rashad). Loretta Greco directs the production.

The playwright widens her dramatic circle to include sexual tension, personal betrayal, accusations of racial self-hatred, questions about ownership of the news, journalistic ethics, fabrication of news and more.

The company includes Kalimi Baxter, Tammi Clayton, Damon Gupton (as a reporter for the paper's African-American section), Michelle Hurst, Stephen Kunken (as an editor of the news section, and lover to Alexander's character), Susan Kelechi Watson and Sarah Grace Wilson.

Previews began Nov. 18 at the Public Theater's Anspacher Theater. The production plays Long Wharf in New Haven in early 2004.

The Story's designers are Robert Brill (scenic), Emilio Sosa (costume), James Vermeulen (lighting) and Rob Kaplowitz (sound). Rashad, the former "The Cosby Show" matriarch, has been a more and more common sight Off-Broadway. In summer 2001, she starred in Charles Randolph Wright's Blue, a sleeper hit for the Roundabout Theatre Company. Two years earlier, she played Harlem Renaissance luminary Zora Neale Hurston in Thulani Davis' Everybody's Ruby, at the Public Theater. Regionally, she's acted Pearl Cleage's Blues For an Alabama Sky, Medea in Atlanta and Here's to Life in Syracuse.

Oddly enough, Alexander also starred on "The Cosby Show," from 1990 to 1992 as Pamela Tucker. Her films include "54" and "Full Frontal."

Visit The Public Theater at www.publictheater.org.

Tammi Clayton, Phylicia Rashad, and Erika Alexander in <i>The Story</i>
Tammi Clayton, Phylicia Rashad, and Erika Alexander in The Story Photo by Michal Daniel
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