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Wednesday, Apr 9 2008

August Wilson's Pulitzer-winning play gets a moving production from the Lorraine Hansberry Theatre. Alex Morris deftly captures the pride and the fury of Troy Maxson, a former Negro League baseball star now, in 1957 Pittsburgh, a garbageman fighting to raise his family the way he deems best. There are moments in the almost-three-hour production where there doesn't seem to be a whole lot happening on Robert Broadfoot's handsome set, such as when Troy is shooting the breeze and polishing off a flask with his old friend Bono (a charming Vernon D. Medearis). But Wilson makes good on all the small seeds he sows, and director Stanley E. Williams gets compelling performances from Elizabeth Carter as Troy's dedicated, hard-working wife, and Axel Avin Jr. as Troy's youngest son, Cory, a talented football player yearning to become his own man. By the end of the night you feel as if you have been on a deep, satisfying journey, as Troy and his family struggle to put aside their pride and fury and make the best lives they can.

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Molly Rhodes


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