By Michael Gioia
21 Sep 2013
Washington, who won the 2010 Tony Award for his performance in Fences, will star as Walter Lee Younger opposite film, television and Tony Award-winning stage star Carroll as Lena Younger, in her first Broadway appearance in over 30 years.
The production will be directed by Tony Award nominee Kenny Leon and open April 3, 2014, for a 14-week limited engagement through June 15, 2014.
The production will also star Academy Award nominee Sophie Okonedo ("Hotel Rwanda," Broadway debut) as Ruth Younger, Tony Award winner Anika Noni Rose (Caroline, or Change) as Beneatha Younger, Stephen Tyrone Williams (Lucky Guy) as Joseph Asagai, Jason Dirden (Fences) as George Murchison, Tony Award nominee Stephen McKinley Henderson (Fences) as Bobo, David Cromer (director and star of Our Town, director of Tribes and The House of Blue Leaves) as Karl Lindner and 13-year-old actor Bryce Clyde Jenkins (Broadway debut, "The To-Do List," "Easy A") as Travis Younger.
Okonedo is appearing with the permission of Actors' Equity Association.
Originally produced in 1959, Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun was the first play written by an African American woman to be produced on Broadway, where it won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play.
Here's how producer Scott Rudin bills the work: "Set on Chicago's South Side, A Raisin in the Sun revolves around the divergent dreams and conflicts within three generations of the Younger family: son Walter Lee (Washington), his wife Ruth (Okonedo), his sister Beneatha (Rose), his son Travis and matriarch Lena, called Mama (Carroll). When her deceased husband's money comes through, Mama dreams of moving to a new home and a better neighborhood in Chicago. Walter Lee, a chauffeur, has other plans: buying a liquor store and being his own man. Beneatha dreams of medical school. The tensions and prejudice they face form this seminal American drama."
Other members of the creative team include scenic designer Mark Thompson, costume designer Ann Roth and lighting designer Brian MacDevitt.
The classic Lorraine Hansberry drama was last seen on Broadway in 2004 starring Sean Combs.
Washington has also been seen on Broadway in Julius Caesar and Checkmates.