Public's 'The Good Negro' to Offer Post-Show Discussions

The Public Theater (Artistic Director Oskar Eustis; Executive Director Mara Manus) announced today that post-show discussions will follow performances of THE GOOD NEGRO by Tracey Scott Wilson on Wednesday, May 28 and Saturday, May 31. Both discussions will immediately follow performances of THE GOOD NEGRO and no additional tickets are necessary.

On May 28, following the 8 p.m. performance, playwright Tracey Scott Wilson will be joined by Diane McWhorter, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Carry Me Home: Birmingham, Alabama – The Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution. Ms. Wilson worked closely with Ms. McWhorter in writing THE GOOD NEGRO and the two will talk about their collaboration as well as their individual work.  Following the discussion, Ms. McWhorter will sign copies of her books Carry Me Home: Birmingham, Alabama – The Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution and A Dream of Freedom: The Civil Rights Movement from 1954 to 1968.

On May 31, following the 2 p.m. performance, The New Yorker's Branden Jacobs-Jenkins will speak with playwrights Tracey Scott Wilson, Keith Joseph Adkins, and Kia Corthron about the challenges and importance of putting black history on stage.

THE GOOD NEGRO began previews on Tuesday, May 20 and runs through Sunday, June 1. Tickets for THE GOOD NEGRO are $10 and available by calling (212) 967-7555 or ordering online at

Conceived and presented in association with LAByrinth Theater Company, PUBLIC LAB is designed to respond to new work immediately, and present fresh, raw and relevant plays that embrace the Public's history as a theater receptive to the big issues, the public issues of our time.  In so doing, this innovative program creates a new model for the ways in which The Public engages with our artists and audience.  This important initiative will give writers the essential opportunity to realize their work in collaboration with director, designers and actors through production and most importantly, to see their work in front of an audience.  The plays will be minimally designed and have short rehearsal periods.

DIANE MCWHORTER is the author of Carry Me Home: Birmingham, Alabama—The Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution, which was published by Simon & Schuster in March 2001. It won the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction, the 2001 Southern Book Award for Nonfiction, the J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize, the Sidney Hillman Foundation Award, the Clarence Cason Award, the Horace Mann Bond Book Award from Harvard University's Du Bois Institute, and the English-Speaking Union Ambassador Award. It was named by Time magazine as one of the Best 10 Books of 2001 and was a Washington Monthly Political Book of the Year. In addition to being a New York Times Notable Book for 2001, it was on the "best books of the year" lists of The Los Angeles Times, The Chicago Tribune, Newsday, Publishers' Weekly, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and others. McWhorter is a longtime contributor to The New York Times and has written articles on race, politics, and culture for USA Today, The Nation, People, Slate, The American Scholar, My Generation, and Boston Magazine, where she was managing editor. She has lectured widely in this country about race and has been on the adjunct faculty of Columbia University's graduate School of the Arts.  She is originally from Birmingham, Alabama.

TRACEY Scott Wilson earned two Van Lier Fellowships from the New York Theatre Workshop, a residency at Sundance Ucross and Sundance Theatre Laboratory, and is the winner of the 2001 Helen Merrill Emerging Playwright Award, the 2003 AT&T Onstage Award, the 2004 Whiting Award, the 2004 Kesserling Prize, the 2007 Weissberger Playwriting Award as well as the 2007 Time Warner Storytelling Fellowship. Ms. Wilson holds a Master's degree in English Literature from Temple University.

Branden Jacobs-Jenkins is on the editorial staff of The New Yorker magazine, where he works in the fiction and critics departments and reviews theatre for Goings on About Town. He is also a Brooklyn-based performance artist and playwright whose recent works include: Neighbors (NYTW reading), Garbage (with Lydia Brawner, Dixon Place), Face (Meat Market Gallery, DC), Thirst, or Getting to Know Me  (PS 122), Heart!!! (McCarter/Princeton University), Content (Theatre Intime), and Columbina Confronts Pierrot About the Baby Inside Her (Theatre Intime). Currently, he is an Emerging Artist Fellow at New York Theatre Workshop and holds a master's degree in Performance Studies from NYU, where he wrote his thesis on blackface minstrelsy, laughter and melancholia, and the performance of race in contemporary American theatre.

KEITH JOSEF ADKINS is a writer and actor. His plays include Safe House, Pitbulls, Farewell Miss Cotton, Hollis Mugley's Only Wish, Wilberforce, The Patron Saint of Plants, Salt On Sugar Hill, and On The Hills of Black America, among others. His work has been produced and/or developed at The Public Theater, Playwrights Horizons, Mark Taper Forum, Cleveland Public Theater, National Black Theater Festival, New York Theater Workshop, EST, Black Dahlia Theater, Hip Hop Theater Festival, Bay Area Playwrights Festival and the Humana Festival. Keith is the recipient of the Alliance Theater's first commission in honor of August Wilson, as well as the Mark Taper Forum's Richard Sherwood Distinguished Emerging Theater Artist Award. He was recently commissioned by The Public Theater to write a new play. A former writer for the CW's "Girlfriends," Keith's screenplay The Disappearing is scheduled for production with Starburst Films later this year. He also blogs for Henry Louis Gates'

Kia Corthron's plays include Moot the Messenger (Actors Theatre of Louisville's Humana Festival), Light Raise the Roof (New York Theatre Workshop), Snapshot Silhouette (Minneapolis' Children's Theatre), Slide Glide the Slippery Slope (ATL Humana, Mark Taper Forum), The Venus de Milo Is Armed (Alabama Shakespeare Festival), Breath, Boom (London's Royal Court Theatre, Playwrights Horizons, Yale Rep, Huntington Theatre and elsewhere), Force Continuum (Atlantic Theater Company), Splash Hatch on the E Going Down (New York Stage and Film, Baltimore's Center Stage, Yale Rep, London's Donmar Warehouse), Seeking the Genesis (Goodman Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Club), Digging Eleven (Hartford Stage Company), Life by Asphyxiation (Playwrights Horizons), Wake Up Lou Riser (Delaware Theatre Company), Come Down Burning (American Place Theatre, Long Wharf Theatre), Cage Rhythm (Sightlines/The Point in the Bronx).  She traveled to Liberia in 2004 under the auspices of the Guthrie Theater's Bush Foundation grant, inspiring her to write Tap the Leopard.  Kia is a member of the Dramatists Guild and Writers Guild of America, and an alumnus of New Dramatists.

The Public Theater (Artistic Director Oskar Eustis; Executive Director Mara Manus) was founded by Joseph Papp in 1954 as the Shakespeare Workshop and is now one of the nation's preeminent cultural institutions, producing new plays, musicals, productions of Shakespeare, and other classics at its headquarters on Lafayette Street and at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park.  The Public's mandate to create a theater for all New Yorkers continues to this day on stage and through its extensive outreach and education programs. Each year, over 250,000 people attend Public Theater-related productions and events at six downtown stages, including Joe's Pub, and Shakespeare in the Park. The Public has won 40 Tony Awards, 145 Obies, 39 Drama Desk Awards, 24 Lucille Lortel Awards and 4 Pulitzer Prizes.

THE GOOD NEGRO began performances on Tuesday, May 20 and will run through Sunday, June 1.  The performance schedule is Tuesdays through Fridays at 8 PM; Saturdays at 2 PM and 8 PM; and Sundays at 2 PM and 7 PM.

The Public Theater is located at 425 Lafayette Street.  All tickets are $10 and can be purchased at (212) 967-7555 or by visiting

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