Billy Porter To Direct THE PURISTS at Huntington Theatre Company
Huntington Theatre Company announced today that tickets to The Purists are now on sale to the general public. The world premiere play, directed by Tony and Grammy Award winner Billy Porter (Kinky Boots, "Pose" on FX), will begin performances at the South End/Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA (527 Tremont St., Boston) on Friday, August 30, 2019 and will run through Sunday, September 29, 2019.
"I'm so excited to bring Boston this play because it's really about a group of people who are on opposite ends of the spectrum - who choose to understand each other - who choose to love each other through their differences. I think that's a very important message today and I'm excited to bring it to you at the Huntington," says The Purists director, Billy Porter.
A thrilling world premiere by an exciting new voice, The Purists brings Tony Award winner Billy Porter (director of Top Dog/Underdog and The Colored Museum at the Huntington) back to the Huntington to direct this soaring new play by Dan McCabe. A former rapper, a DJ, and a showtunes-loving telesales director have become an unlikely group who hang out and spar about music on a stoop in Queens. But, when an impromptu rap battle erupts between two younger female emcees, everything gets questioned. With raw emotion and uproarious humor, The Purists asks, what is friendship? How can we embrace new ideas? And what does it mean to be wholly yourself?
Billy Porter (Director) is a Tony and Grammy Award-winning, and Golden Globe-nominated, actor, singer, director, composer, and playwright from Pittsburgh, PA.
His electric portrayal of Pray Tell in FX's breakthrough series "Pose," earned him a Golden Globe nomination and a Critics' Choice Award nomination. On screen, Porter recently appeared on "American Horror Story: Apocalypse" and Baz Luhrman's "The Get Down" on Netflix. Under the direction of Barry Levinson, Porter starred in The Humbling, alongside Al Pacino and Greta Gerwig. His other film credits include Noel, The Broken Hearts Club: A Romantic Comedy, Intern, Anastasia, and Twisted.
A veteran of the theatre, Porter recently reprised his role as Lola in the smash hit Broadway musical Kinky Boots, for which he won the 2013 Drama Desk and Tony Awards for Best Actor in a Musical. His other Broadway acting credits include the Tony nominated Broadway musical, Shuffle Along, directed by George C. Wolfe, Miss Saigon, Five Guys Named Moe, Grease, Smokey Joe's Café, and Dreamgirls (20th anniversary Broadway concert and LA Ovation Award). His Off Broadway and regional credits include Angels in America (Signature Theater), Romance In Hard Times, The Merchant of Venice, House of Lear, and Radiant Baby (The New York Shakespeare Festival), Birdie Blue (Second Stage), Angels in America (Actors Theatre of Louisville), Going Native (The Long Wharf), Jelly's Last Jam (Alliance), Topdog/Underdog (City Theatre), King Lear (Exit, Pursued By A Bear), Jason Robert Brown's Songs for a New World (original cast), Jesus Christ Superstar, Antigone, A Chorus Line, and Chicago. His one-man show Ghetto Superstar: The Man That I Am, debuted at The Public Theater in conjunction with City Theatre of Pittsburgh and was nominated for a 2005 GLAAD Media Award. Porter was also named "Pittsburgh's Performer of the Year 2003-2004" by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
As a director, Porter's work includes the revivals of George C. Wolfe's play The Colored Museum and Suzan-Lori Parks' Top Dog / Underdog at the Huntington Theatre Company. Porter also has directed a critically acclaimed recreation of The Wiz and conceived a musical revue entitled Signed, Sealed, Delivered: The Music of Stevie Wonder, which starred Chaka Khan and ran at the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas in the spring of 2002. Additionally, Porter conceived and directed Being Alive, which made its world premiere in the summer of 2007 at The Westport Country Playhouse and immediately transferred to The Philadelphia Theatre Company, inaugurating their new Suzanne Roberts Theatre. His additional directing credits include Twilight in Manchego, Once on this Island (NAACP Theatre Award Winner), The Soul of Richard Rodgers, Five Guys Named Moe, Altar Boyz, Rent (Associate Director, Off Broadway revival) and Wicked Summer Nights Concert Series. Porter made his London directorial debut in the fall of 2009 with Olivier Award nominee Patina Miller at Live in the Delfont Room. Primary Stages presented the highly successful world premiere of his play While I Yet Live off-Broadway at the Duke on 42nd Street.
The Huntington Theatre Company is Boston's leading professional theatre and one of the region's premier cultural assets since its founding in 1982. Recipient of the 2013 Regional Theatre Tony Award, the Huntington brings together superb local and national talent and produces a mix of groundbreaking new works and classics made current to create award-winning productions. The Huntington runs nationally renowned programs in education and new play development and serves the local theatre community through its operation of the Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA. The Huntington has long been an anchor cultural institution of Huntington Avenue, the Avenue of the Arts, and will remain so on a permanent basis with plans to convert the Huntington Avenue Theatre into a first-rate, modern venue with expanded services to audiences, artists, and the community. Under the direction of Artistic Director Peter DuBois and Managing Director Michael Maso, the Huntington cultivates, celebrates, and champions theatre as an art form. For more information, visit huntingtontheatre.org.