Westport's Raisin in the Sun, Directed by Phylicia Rashad, Begins Performances Oct. 9

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09 Oct 2012

Billy Eugene Jones
Billy Eugene Jones

Tony Award winner Phylicia Rashad, who starred in the 2004 revival of A Raisin in the Sun, stages that Tony and Pulitzer Prize-winning drama by Lorraine Hansberry for the Westport Country Playhouse; previews begin Oct. 9.

Rashad earned a Tony Award for playing Lena Younger in the 2004 revival and has since staged the classic at regional theatres across the U.S. She will take part in an Oct. 14 symposium following the 3 PM matinee.

A Raisin in the Sun runs through Nov. 3.

The cast features Susan Kelechi Watson (A Naked Girl on the Appian Way) as Ruth Younger, Lynda Gravátt (Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Doubt) as Lena Younger, Billy Eugene Jones (The Mountaintop, Passing Strange) as Walter Lee Younger, Gabriel Brown (Fences) as George Murchison, Alvin Crawford (The Lion King) as Bobo, John Hemphill (Mamma Mia!) as Karl Linder, Edena Hines (All's Well That Ends Well) as Beneatha Younger, Luka Kain (South Pacific) as Travis Younger, Ade Otukoya (Gem of the Ocean) as a Moving Man, Hubert Point-Du Jour (Angels in America) as Joseph Asagai and Donnell E. Smith (A Christmas Carol) as a Moving Man.

According to Westport, "Set on Chicago's South Side in the 1950s, the plot revolves around the divergent dreams and conflicts within three generations of the Younger family: son Walter Lee, his wife Ruth, his sister Beneatha, his son Travis and matriarch Lena. When her deceased husband's insurance money comes through, Lena dreams of moving to a new home and a better neighborhood in Chicago. Walter Lee, a chauffeur, has other plans, however: buying a liquor store and being his own man. Beneatha dreams of medical school. The family's heroic struggle to retain dignity in a harsh and changing world paints a searing portrait of people whose dreams are constantly deferred."

The Westport production has scenic design by Edward Burbidge, costume design by Esosa, lighting design by Xavier Pierce and sound design by Lindsay Jones.

For tickets visit WestportPlayhouse.org.