"A Raisin in the Sun-Random House Digital, Inc., 1958 - Drama - 151 pages
When it was first produced in 1959, A Raisin in the Sun was awarded the New York Drama Critics Circle Award and hailed as a watershed in American drama. Not only was it a pioneering work by an African-American playwright - Lorraine Hansberry's play was also a radically new representation of black life, one that was resolutely authentic, fiercely unsentimental, and unflinching in its vision of what happens to people whose dreams are constantly deferred. In her portrait of an embattled Chicago family, Hansberry anticipated issues that range from generational clashes to the civil rights and women's movements. She also posed the essential questions - about identity, justice and moral responsibility - at the heart of these great struggles. The result is a work that captivated audiences from every walk of life and has become a classic of American letters."
My friend and fellow TWAM member Louise Reid Ritchie is playing the matriarch Lena Younger and sent me this Feibu event invite:
"MONTICELLO OPERA HOUSE presents A CANOPY ROAD THEATER COMPANY in Association with THE POEMEDY PROJECT presentation of A RAISIN IN THE SUN: The play that "changed American theatre forever," according to The New York Times, started with a few short lines from a long poem.
Langston Hughes wrote the poem, and Lorraine Hansberry was inspired – both by the poem and by her own real-life experience – to write A Raisin in the Sun, the first play written by a black woman to be produced on Broadway. Set on Chicago's South Side, the plot revolves around the divergent dreams and conflicts within three generations of the Younger family. Show Times: March 22-23 at 8pm March 24 at 2pm"
|Summer Hill Seven, Zakiya Jas, Louise Reid Ritchie,Stacy Mosby and Nicole L Smith .|
A strong cast with emotional ties and similarities bring the powerful play to life as they feel a kinship to their characters. Louise Reid Ritchie shares a little background on the ensemble and their places for character inspiration. As a child in upstate NY Louise's family was met with a neighborhood petition against them taking residence in the area. Summer saw a childhood raised by a battered mom and 7 other siblings. Stacy was in foster care, Deneurve from Haiti and Kevin Carr the director, is the child of Irish immigrants who didn't go past the 10th grade. They are all following their dreams and like the characters they portray they know what those dreams are. Summer became a lawyer and is now acting because he feels he can affect society more in that capacity. Stacy and Deneurve are attending FAMU and FSU respectively, and Kevin Carr is currently working on his dissertation. They have come to possess and be possessive of the play and its' characters and I can't wait to see their perfomance.
BB's definition of "a classic" is something that evokes emotions, thoughts, discussions, and maintains its' strengths and message throughout the years. It transcends ethnicities and age by speaking to us- our souls feel the ringing within.
And for those who find this a bit far from Babushka's usual fare, remember, it's a post brought about by love (for a friend and for good theater), the following of dreams- living our life in attaining them, and the universal feelings shared by all of us. It may not be lighthearted, but it's definitely with heart and in the end- isn't that what BB's all about?