Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater

Marking the halfway point in its commitment to present all 10 plays of August Wilson's American Century Cycle, Two River Theater's critically-acclaimed production of Wilson's drama King Hedley II, directed by Brandon J. Dirden, ended its extended run on December 16. Scroll down for photos of the all-access pass to the closing performance.

August Wilson is the 10th most produced playwright of the current season in the United States, according to American Theater magazine. Two River's staging of King Hedley II is currently the only production of this rarely seen play happening anywhere in the world.

The year is 1985 and Pittsburgh's Hill District has been ravaged by violence, unemployment, and Urban Blight. King Hedley II returns to his home after a seven-year prison term looking to re-build his life, save some money, and start a family. However, both he and those around him quickly find that in 1980s America, the rules have changed.

Brandon J. Dirden-the award-winning actor/director who has appeared in five Two River productions, including, most recently, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom and A Raisin in the Sun-directs this sequel to Seven Guitars, which was produced under his direction at Two River in 2015. King Hedley IIpicks up the stories of Ruby and Canewell (known here as Stool Pigeon) from the earlier drama, which is set in the 1940s.

The cast of King Hedley II includes Brittany Bellizeare (Tonya), Harvy Blanks (Elmore), Brian D. Coats (Stool Pigeon), Elain Graham (Ruby), Charlie Hudson III (Mister), and Blake Morris (King Hedley II).

The creative team includes scenic designer Michael Carnahan, costume designer Karen Perry, lighting designer Kathy A. Perkins, sound designer Kay Richardson, and wigs designer Erin Hicks. The fight direction is by UnkleDave's Fight-House, the casting is by Heidi Griffiths & Kate Murray, and the stage manager is Laura Wilson.

Photo Credit: Lia Chang

high res photos

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brandon J. Dirden

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Two River Theater

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brittany Bellizeare, Harvy Blanks, Blake Morris, Charlie Hudson III, Elain Graham and Brian D. Coats

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Costumes by Karen Perry

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Costumes by Karen Perry

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brandon J. Dirden, Lia Chang and Charlie Hudson III

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Costumes by Karen Perry

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Harvy Blanks, Charlie Hudson III and Blake Morris in rehearsal

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brian D. Coats in rehearsal

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Harvy Blanks in rehearsal

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Blake Morris in rehearsal

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River TheaterL to R: Brandon J. Dirden, Jackie Romeo, John Dias, Harvy Blanks, Charlie Hudson III, Joaquin Gomez, Blake Morris, Elain Graham, Brittany Bellizeare, Brian D. Coats, Laura Wilson, Kathy Perkins, Brian Eckert.

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Set Design by Michael Carnahan

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Blake Morris during fight call

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Elain Graham, Harvy Blanks and Blake Morris during fight call

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Putting scar makeup on: Jaclyn Vela and Blake Morris

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Harvy Blanks

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Getting into hair: Brittany Bellizeare and Maggie Barnett

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Elain Graham

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Charlie Hudson III, Brian D. Coats, Brandon J. Dirden, Brittany Bellizeare and Harvy Blanks

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brian D. Coats, Elain Graham, Brittany Bellizeare, Harvy Blanks, Blake Morris, Brandon J. Dirden and Charlie Hudson III in the pre-show prayer circle

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brian D. Coats, Elain Graham, Brittany Bellizeare, Harvy Blanks, Blake Morris and Charlie Hudson III in the pre-show prayer circle

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Harvy Blanks, Blake Morris, Brandon J. Dirden and Charlie Hudson III in the pre-show prayer circle

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Harvy Blanks, Charlie Hudson III and Brittany Bellizeare

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brittany Bellizeare, Brian D. Coats, Harvy Blanks, Blake Morris, Charlie Hudson III and Elain Graham in costumes by Karen Perry

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brittany Bellizeare, Brian D. Coats, Harvy Blanks, Blake Morris, Charlie Hudson III and Elain Graham in costumes by Karen Perry

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brittany Bellizeare and Blake Morris

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brian D. Coats and Harvy Blanks in the dressing room

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brian D. Coats, Harvy Blanks, Charlie Hudson III and Blake Morris

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brittany Bellizeare and Elain Graham in the dressing room

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Blake Morris, Elain Graham, Brittany Bellizeare, Charlie Hudson III, Harvy Blanks and Brian D. Coats during the closing night curtain call

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brian D. Coats

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Elain Graham and Terria Joseph

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Nikkole Salter, Blake Morris and John Scutchins

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Laura Wilson, Brittany Bellizeare, Brandon J. Dirden, Elain Graham, Brian D. Coats, Charlie Hudson III, Harvy Blanks and Blake Morris

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Laura Wilson, Brittany Bellizeare, Brandon J. Dirden, Elain Graham, Brian D. Coats, Charlie Hudson III, Harvy Blanks and Blake Morris

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brian D. Coats, Brandon J. Dirden, Blake Morris and Charlie Hudson III

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brandon J. Dirden signs posters

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Norman Smalls, John Scutchins and Nikkole Salter

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brittany Bellizeare, Brian D. Coats, Harvy Blanks, Elain Graham, Charlie Hudson III, Blake Morris

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brittany Bellizeare, Brian D. Coats, Harvy Blanks, Elain Graham, Brandon J. Dirden, Charlie Hudson III, Blake Morris

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brian D. Coats

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Brittany Bellizeare and Blake Morris

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Harvy Blanks and Brittany Bellizeare

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Blake Morris and Harvy Blanks

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Blake Morris

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
KING HEDLEY II at Two River Theater

Photo Flash: Backstage With The Cast Of August Wilson's KING HEDLEY II At Two River Theater
Set design by Michael Carnahan

 

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