A message from our Artistic Director, posted 2/21/15:
Space and Time. Given that many of us have had to overdevelop our shoveling skills over the last few weeks–on top of the schedules that already make our lives hectic–we have elected to reformat our Wilson Reading Series schedules. Perhaps in an effort to ambitiously showcase the work of an American literary icon, I forgot two things:
- First: This works deserves the proper amount of Space and Time to be done well and appreciated properly
- Second: At times, New England can be a snow-covered wasteland on which only the truly strong survive
Given these realities, we’ll be spreading out the remainder of the canon, effective immediately. Starting with the reading of Gem of the Ocean that was scheduled for February 21st, we will be reconfiguring the schedule for this series.
We will endeavor to have an updated schedule published in the next few days. In the meantime, whet your appetite with a bit of information on the PBS doc of Wilson’s life, The Ground on Which I Stand.
Thanks for your support and be on the look out for the next reading!
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For the past 40 years, the plays of August Wilson were some of the most popular and most produced plays in America. These plays have been presented at every level, from Broadway to amateur companies. His Century Cycle of plays told the stories of Black Americans for every decade of the 20th century. During February Mixed Magic Theatre will present stage readings of all ten of these shows.
The readings are not only a celebration of a dynamic and prolific writer, but also provide an opportunity for actors and audiences to explore August Wilson’s complex characters and stories. The plays are also an examination of a nation struggling with racial equality, justice, and its own cultural humanity.
Wilson’s work is often seen as a melding of the epic nature of Shakespeare’s plays and the small personal plays of South African play write Athol Fugard. All of these plays take place in single set environments with small casts in conflict with each other, themselves and a looming world in turmoil just outside the window or the backyard.
Wilson’s work also features a number of Black American archetypes including spiritual innocents and conjureman, black men struggling with their present rage and future hope and powerful and wounded women.
This project is done as a collaboration between Mixed Magic Theatre’s Artistic Director Jonathan Pitts-Wiley and 2014-2015 Artist-In-Resident Kevin Broccoli.