Kelvin Roston Jr. and More Star in Court Theatre's SEVEN GUITARS, Beg. Tonight
Court Theatre continues its 2013-2014 season with Seven Guitars written by August Wilson, and directed by Resident Artist Ron OJ Parson. Seven Guitars will run tonight, January 9 - February 9, 2014 at Court Theatre, 5535 S. Ellis Avenue. Press Opening is Saturday, January 18, 2014 at 8:00PM.
Winner of the New York Drama Critics Circle Best Play Award, Seven Guitars will feature Jerod Haynes (Canewell), Kelvin Roston Jr. (Floyd Barton), Felicia P. Fields (Louise), Ronald Conner (Red Carter), Erynn Mackenzie (Ruby), Ebony Wimbs (Vera) and Allen Gilmore (Hedley).
Resident Artist Ron OJ Parson returns to Court Theatre to direct Seven Guitars, August Wilson's haunting Century Cycle play about fate, justice, and the Blues. In the backyard of a Pittsburgh tenement in 1948, six characters gather to mourn the missing seventh: Floyd "Schoolboy" Barton, a blues guitarist with feet of clay who died with fame and celebrity just beyond his reach. Stitched with vibrant swatches of American blues lyrics and harmonized through a seven-piece ensemble, Wilson's signature voice is at its richest in Seven Guitars as it seeks to explore the disappointingly dissonant harmonies we sometimes find in the circular nature of hope, violence, fate, and justice.
Ronald L. Conner (Red Carter) was last seen at Court Theatre in the 2009 production of August Wilson's The Piano Lesson, directed by Ron OJ Parson. The Piano Lesson received a Jeff nomination for Best Production and Conner received the Black Theatre Alliance Award for Best Lead Actor. He was also seen at Court Theatre in The First Breeze of Summer. Ron is a proud ensemble member of Congo Square Theatre where he has appeared in The Colored Museum, Deep Azure, The African Company Presents Richard III, and The Talented Tenth (2008 BTAA Best Actor in an Ensemble). Other Chicago theaters include Chicago Shakespeare, Urban Theatre Company, and Pegasus Players. Regional credits include: New Harmony Theatre, Geva Theatre of Rochester, Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati, and The St. Louis Black Rep where Ronald has just finished performing four shows in repertory and a one man show where he played over 40 characters. Ron's most notable television and film credits are The Dark Knight and the Coors Light National NFL Campaign (2007-2010).
Felicia Fields (Louise) makes her Court Theatre debut in Seven Guitars. Felicia is best known for her portrayal of Sofia in the Broadway and first touring company of the musical The Color Purple, for which she received a Tony nomination, Clarence Derwitt Award, and several other awards. She has performed at the Marriott, Goodman, Drury Lane, Broadway in Chicago, Northlight, Theatre at the Center, as well as many productions throughout the United States and Canada including commercials, voice-overs, and films. When not in the theatre she enjoys working with "The Smiley Tillmon Band" as well as her own Blues and R&B productions.
Allen Gilmore (Hedley) was last seen at Court Theatre in The Misanthrope as the villainess Arsinoe and Tartuffe as Madame Pernelle, both directed by Charles Newell. Other Court credits include Turnbo in Jitney, the title role in Sizwe Banzi Is Dead (Jeff, BTA nominations), both directed by Ron OJ Parson, the title role in Cyrano, Hamm in Endgame, and M. Argante in Scapin. Recently he performed in Accidental Death of an Anarchist at Yale Rep and will again in the spring at Berkeley Rep. Allen is a proud artistic associate of Next Theatre and a proud ensemble member of Congo Square Theatre Company.
Jerod Haynes (Canewell) was born and raised on Chicago's South Side and makes Court Theatre his debut in Seven Guitars. He was most recently seen in TimeLine Theatre's production of A Raisin in the Sun directed by Ron O.J. Parson. Other theater credits include Columbinus (2013) at ATC Theater. He also played the role of Tom Robinson in Milwaukee Reparatory Theater's production of To Kill a Mockingbird. Other theatre credits include Chicago's ETA Theatre in their productions of Contribution and Greensboro 4: Downpayment on Manhood. Jerod has spent time in the UK where he studied at the British American Drama Academy (BADA). He also finished the entire training program at the Acting Studio Chicago. Jerod thanks God and dedicates his work to his daughter, Jalaiya.