Olney Theatre Center to Present August Wilson's THE PIANO LESSON, 5/7-6/1

Olney Theatre Center to Present August Wilson's THE PIANO LESSON, 5/7-6/1

Olney Theatre Center, a Maryland destination for professional theater performance and education, continues its critically-acclaimed 76th Anniversary season with August Wilson's Pulitzer Prize-winning drama THE PIANO LESSON May 7 - June 1, 2014 in the Mulitz-Gudelsky Theatre Lab.

THE PIANO LESSON is the fourth play in August Wilson's "Century Cycle." The play follows the Charleses, an African-American family living in Pittsburgh in 1936, as they struggle over the sale of a precious family heirloom, literally and figuratively fighting the ghosts of their past.

"When I programmed our 76th Season, I knew I wanted to produce a great American drama in our 150-seat theater so patrons could experience soaring poetry and fierce performance just feet away from the best actors in the business," says Olney Theatre Center Artistic Director Jason Loewith. "I was forever changed after seeing the first New York production of THE PIANO LESSON, and I know the incredibly diverse audience in and around our theater will feel the same way after they see it, too."

The cast of THE PIANO LESSON is led by Helen Hayes nominee Jessica Frances Dukes as Berniece. Ms. Dukes has performed locally at Woolly Mammoth (ANTEBELLUM, FEVER/DREAM, ECLIPSED, BOOTY CANDY), Ford's Theatre (JITNEY), Round House Theatre (PERMANENT COLLECTION, TRIP TO BOUNTIFUL), and CenterStage (CLYBOURNE PARK, BENEATHA'S PLACE), among others. Baakari Wilder tackles the role of Boy Willie. Mr. Wilder performed in BRING IN DA NOISE BRING IN DA FUNK on Broadway. Regionally he has worked with Kumble Theatre (PEARL), Spooky Action Theatre (THE WATER ENGINE), Randolph Road Theater (TRIFLES), and the Bay Theatre (MASTER HAROLD AND THE BOYS).

Rounding out the cast are Lauren Du Pree as Grace, JaBen Early as Avery, Jon Hudson Odom as Lymon, Jonathan Peck as Doaker, Harold Surratt as Wining Boy, and Nicole Wildy as Maretha. Director Jamil Jude helms this production with a design team that includes Scenic Designer Daniel Ettinger, Costume Designer Reggie Ray, Lighting Designer Xavier Pierce, Sound Designer Elisheba Ittoop, and Fight Director Robb Hunter.

For more information, visit www.olneytheatre.org.

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