August Wilson's Women, with Farrar, Jones, Mitchell and Mangan, Begins March 25

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25 Mar 2010

Lorna Littleway
Lorna Littleway

August Wilson's Women, a series of excerpts from the late playwright's works that focus on his female characters, plays the Nuyorican Poets Café in Manhattan March 25-April 10.

Juneteenth Legacy Theatre presents the limited engagement, which is directed by Lorna Littleway, who also adapted the plays for this production.

In a statement director Littleway said, "I'm fascinated by the women in Wilson's plays. Time and again they are the constants in his works; offering advice, support and insight for the various male protagonists. Yet because it's the male characters who transform the most spiritually (think of the final scene in almost every Wilson play), the women all too often are left on the sidelines. That's why I came up with the idea for this show: to give the women their due."

The cast comprises Thursday Farrar, Jannie Jones, Kimberley Dalton Mitchell, Michael Jones and Jamil A.C. Mangan.

Among the characters presented, press notes state, are "14 women who carry the weight of their life's experience with them, for better or worse, such as Aunt Ester (The Gem of The Ocean), who uses her special knowledge to point others in the direction they need to go; Ma Rainey (Ma Rainey's Black Bottom), a successful singer who steadfastly sticks to what she knows; Berniece (The Piano Lesson), guardian of the family legacy who may be holding onto the past a bit too tightly; and Rose (Fences), a loving wife to whom family and loyalty is another name for sacrifice. There are also those who still brim with youthful experience and questions, such as Black Mary (Gem of the Ocean) and Vera (Seven Guitars). On the other end of the chronological spectrum is Mame (Radio Golf), a woman in a strong position of authority outside the home, who has moved on from the past, and her heritage, and who intends to break from it once and for all."



The production also features the cast singing blues and spirituals a cappella, to serve as bridges between the different segments.

Show times are Thursday-Saturday at 7 PM.

Nuyorican Poets Café is located at 236 East 3rd Street. For tickets, priced $20, call (212) 780-9386 or visit www.nuyorican.org.