Off-Broadway’s Keen Company will kick off 2020 with the New York premiere of Blues for an Alabama Sky by playwright, novelist, and poet Pearl Cleage.
LA Williams will direct a cast that features Prema Cruz (A Month in the Country), Alfie Fuller (BLKS), John-Andrew Morrison (A Strange Loop), Khiry Walker (Much Ado About Nothing), and Sheldon Woodley (Father Comes Home from The Wars).
Previously announced as part of Keen's 20th season, Blues for an Alabama Sky is a New York City-set story of friends in Harlem during the summer of 1930. As the promises of the Harlem Renaissance are being swept away by the Great Depression, the group—whose lives and passions collide with the arrival of a stranger from Alabama—must navigate changing and challenging times.
“The story of Blues for an Alabama Sky arrived while I was driving with my husband, Zeke, through rural Alabama one cool, clear night when the stars were so thick I hung my head out the window like a dog so I could take it all in,” said Cleage. “For weeks after we got back to Atlanta, I couldn't stop wondering what it would be like to leave those stars behind and have to settle for the artificial lights of the big city. Now, 25 years later, Angel and Doc and Guy and Leland and Delia will finally have a chance to walk around Manhattan and see how they like it. It is an honor for me to have this play make its New York debut as part of the Keen Company's 20th Season and to have these characters come to life here under the direction of LA Williams who loves them almost as much as I do. Almost.”
Blues for an Alabama Sky will begin performances February 4 at Theatre Row. Performances will continue through March 14, with opening night set for February 18.
The design team includes scenic deisgner You-Shin Chen, costume designer Asa Benally, lighting designer Oona Curley, and original music and sound designer Lindsay Jones. Casting is by Billy Hopkins Casting. Fran Rubenstein will serve as production stage manager, and Drew Francis will be the production manager.