Quote Of The Day

"Victory goes to the player who makes the next-to-last mistake - Chessmaster Savielly Grigorievitch Tartakower (1887-1956)"

Monday, October 03, 2022

Blues for an Alabama Sky @ Lyttelton Theatre - @helenapipe was amazing @NationalTheatre #BluesForAnAlabamaSky ...

Last Friday night Stuart and I went to see the play Blues for an Alabama Sky at the Lyttelton Theatre on London's glitzy South Bank.
Written by the novelist and poet Pearl Cleage the play is set in Harlem in 1930. It is very much a traditional American play that yields a superb performance from its excellent cast. It's funny too.
Cleage’s focus is on Harlem as its famous cultural renaissance is stalled by economic depression. That has a direct effect on the lives of Guy, a gay costume-designer who dreams of working for Josephine Baker in Paris, and on his friend, Angel, an out-of-work dancer. But their neighbour, Delia, bucks the trend by setting up Harlem’s first birth-control clinic with the aid of a local doctor, Sam. They make a close-knit quartet whose lives are fatally disrupted by the arrival of an Alabama stranger.
Cleage’s play, which owes much to Tennessee Williams, comes to a melodramatic conclusion but offers a riveting picture of Harlem at a moment of historic transition. You get a fierce sense, in Lynette Linton’s fine production, of lives being palpably lived and of the conflict between a debt to the community and a desire to escape. 
All the cast are excellent –  Ronkẹ Adékoluẹjo, Osy Ikhile, Sule Rimi and Giles Terera - however special mention needs to go to Helena Pipe who stepped in to play Angel, as the actor Samira Wiley (her off of The Handmaid’s Tale and Orange Is the New Black) was 'indisposed'. Again.

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