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Adagio Teas
   Features  >  LATEST NEW YORK NEWS

 
FENCES
at Broadway

FALL CLASSIC
By David Lefkowitz
Published March 19 2008


With August Wilson's 10-play cycle already a part of the canon of modern theater classics, and with black productions recently making stronger inroads into commercial Broadway (Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Passing Strange, The Color Purple), what better time for a revival of Wilson's most commercially successful work, Fences?

Actually, the idea for a revival was none other than Wilson's. Dining with producer Carole Shorenstein Hays in 2005 on his 60th birthday, the playwright suggested a remount of his hard-hitting family drama. Hays agreed, and even though Wilson died that October, she's been working towards bringing Fences back ever since.

This week, she told the New York Times that a revival would happen in the fall, with Pulitzer-winner Suzan-Lori Parks (Topdog/Underdog) staging. Parks, who will be making her Broadway directing debut, told the Tmes she wants to ensure the play stays, edgy and intense.

No specific dates or theater have been announced for Fences, which is set in the 1950s and thus fits chronologically in the middle of his cycle, which offered one play per decade of the 20th Century:

1900s - Gem of the Ocean

1910s - Joe Turner's Come and Gone

1920s - Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

1930s - The Piano Lesson

1940s - Seven Guitars

1950s - Fences

1960s - Two Trains Running

1970s - Jitney

1980s - King Hedley II

1990s - Radio Golf

Fences won a Best-Play Tony, New York Drama Critics Circle Award and Pulitzer Prize for its 1987 Broadway premiere, with James Earl Jones, currently in Cat, netting a Tony for his galvanic performance as the father, Troy Maxson.

 


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