Williamstown Theatre Festival’s 2019 summer season will include a new production of A Raisin in the Sun and five world premieres, with stage and screen veterans taking center stage at the Massachusetts company.
The newly announced lineup kicks off June 25–July 13 with Lorraine Hansberry’s American classic, marking the 60th anniversary of its Broadway premiere. Tony nominee and Emmy winner S. Epatha Merkerson will take on the role of Lena Younger, with Francois Battiste as her son Walter. Robert O’Hara will direct.
Also set to play the Main Stage is the world premiere of Bess Wohl’s Grand Horizons, directed by Leigh Silverman. The cast will include Oscar winner Mary Steenburgen and Modern Family star and Broadway veteran Jesse Tyler Ferguson. Steenburgen will play Nancy, a woman who, after five decades of a happy marriage, suddenly wants out, leaving her sons Brian (Ferguson) and Ben to deal with an unexpectedly crumbling family. Performances will run July 17 through July 28.
Uma Thurman will next step onto the Main Stage in a new translation of Ibsen’s Ghosts from Paul Walsh. Carey Perloff will direct the staging, running July 31 through August 18.
Meanwhile, three world premieres are slated for the Nikos Stage: Jonathan Payne’s A Human Being, of a Sort, about an African-American convict and the Congolese pygmy he’s tasked to guard at the Bronx Zoo (directed by Whitney White, June 26–July 11); Sylvia Khoury’s Selling Kabul, about a family hiding from the Taliban (directed by Tyne Rafaeli and featuring Omar Metwally, Marjan Neshat, and Babak Tafti, July 10–21); Sharyn Rothstein’s Second Amendment-family comedy, Tell Me I’m Not Crazy (directed by Moritz von Stuelpnagel and featuring Jane Kaczmarek, Mark Feurstein, and Nadine Malouf, July 24–August 3); and Adam Bock’s Before the Meeting, about a woman struggling to maintain her sobriety after old wounds reopen (directed by Trip Cullman and featuring Jason Butler Harner, August 7–18).
Additional season information, including additional casting and programming for WTF’s development reading series, will be announced at a later date.