African-American Cast Will Make The Trip to Bountiful at Cleveland Play House

News   African-American Cast Will Make The Trip to Bountiful at Cleveland Play House
The Cleveland Playhouse production of Academy Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Horton Foote's poignant play The Trip to Bountiful will feature an African-American cast in February.

Lizan Mitchell
Lizan Mitchell

Hallie Foote, the Tony-nominated actress and daughter of the heralded playwright, has authorized the production, which will be staged by Timothy Douglas. Performances will run Feb. 4-27 in the Drury Theatre. The engagement is a co-production with the Round House Theatre.

Veteran actress Lizan Mitchell (Broadway's Having Our Say, Electra) leads the cast as widow Carrie Watts, with Jessica Frances Dukes as Thelma, Chinai J. Hardy as Jessie Mae Watts, Doug Brown as Roy, Robert Jason Jackson as Ludie Watts and Lawrence Redmond as the Sheriff.

"The Trip to Bountiful remains one of my all-time favorite plays, and has been on my director's wish list for some time," Douglas said in a statement. "So equal to my intent of providing a moving theatrical vehicle for the incomparably talented Lizan Mitchell is my desire to honor the prolific and uniquely American playwright Horton Foote. And given his recent passing, I felt the timing to uniquely honor him couldn't be more appropriate. Because I remain committed to the playwright's original intent, all of the augmented socially-specific examples will only be communicated by way of the stage picture, coupled with the audiences' individual and collective knowledge of race relations. I hope this production will impart powerful new meanings in a unique Trip to Bountiful."

The staging will have scenic design by Tony Cisek, costume design by Toni-Leslie James, lighting design by Christopher Studley and sound design by James C. Swonger.

Here's how the Cleveland Play House bills the work: "Trapped in a cramped Houston apartment with her soft-spoken son and self-absorbed daughter-in-law, widow Carrie Watts dreams of returning to her home in the small Gulf Coast town of Bountiful, where she grew up and raised her own family. Fearing that she's an imposition and chafing under her daughter-in-law's watchful eye, she steals away with her latest pension check and heads home in the journey of a lifetime. The result is an unforgettable meditation on the idea of home and its power to sustain us." Tickets are available by phoning (216) 795-7000 or by visiting ClevelandPlayhouse.

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