Honoring one of the most popular African-American playwrights, the American Stage continues its production of August Wilson’s 10-play Pittsburgh Cycle with his 1990 play “The Piano Lesson.”
It is the sixth piece in the series that the company has staged since it launched the project in the 2007-08 season.
Wilson, who first gained prominence with his Broadway debut in “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” wrote a 10-play cycle chronicling each decade of the 20th century black experience. American Stage will stage all of the plays by the 2016-17 season. (The Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe is currently presenting Wilson’s “Jitney,” which American Stage has planned for the 2014-15 season.)
“The Piano Lesson” follows a brother and sister arguing about a family heirloom, a piano. One wants to sell it, the other wants to keep it for the family history engraved in the wood. Wilson won his second Pulitzer Prize for Drama for the play. Mark Clayton Southers, artistic director of Theatre Initiatives for the August Wilson Center for African-American Culture in Pittsburgh, is directing the production.
After a preview Jan. 17, the production opens Jan. 18 and continues through March 3 at the Raymond James Theatre, 163 3rd St. N., St. Petersburg. Performances are at 8 p.m. Wed.-Sat., 3 p.m. matinees Sat. and Sun. Special performances include 3 p.m. Jan. 30, and 8 p.m. Feb. 14 and 19. For more information: (727) 823-7529; americanstage.org.