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PLAY OF THE DAY! Today's Play: FENCES by August Wilson

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During this time when productions all over the world have been put on pause, we are coming together to celebrate plays that have left their mark on theater history.

This week we will be focusing on the plays of August Wilson.

Today's play, Fences!

Fences is a 1985 play, which won the 1987 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the 1987 Tony Award for Best Play. Fences is set in the 1950s, and is the sixth in Wilson's ten-part "Pittsburgh Cycle", which explores the African American experience in the 20th century, with each play set in a different decade.

Fences follows Troy Maxson, who earlier in life dreamed of becoming a professional baseball player, but was unable to due the major leagues not admitting black athletes at the time. Troy's son is looking to become a college athlete, but Troy, fearing racial discrimination does not want him to play. Fences chronicles the plight of Troy's family as they struggle with dreams, familial relationships, and race relations in the U.S.

The play first came to Broadway in 1987 starring James Earl Jones (Troy Maxson), Mary Alice (Rose), Ray Aranha (Jim Bono), Frankie Faison (Gabriel), and Courtney B. Vance (Cory). The production won the Tony Awards for Best Play, Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Play (James Earl Jones), Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Play (Mary Alice), and Best Direction of a Play (Lloyd Richards).

The 2010 revival of Fences starred Denzel Washington (Troy Maxson) and Viola Davis (Rose). The revival was nominated for ten Tony Awards, winning three for Best Revival of a Play, Best Actor in a Play (Denzel Washington), and Best Actress in a Play (Viola Davis.

The film adaptation of Fences in 2016 again starred Denzel Washington and Viola Davis. The film was nominated for 4 Oscars, with Viola Davis winning for Best Supporting Actress.


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