Monday, September 26

Tag: Wil Johnson

Jitney – Oldham Coliseum
North West

Jitney – Oldham Coliseum

Until recently I was only vaguely aware of August Wilson and his 'Pittsburgh Century Cycle' of plays, chronicling the experience of African-Americans in the USA over a hundred year period. Whether this was my fault, or the fact that his work has not been staged as often as his better known contemporaries is moot, but it allowed me to come to this Old Vic/Leeds Playhouse/Headlong production of 'Jitney', with a fresh perspective on the stunning opening night for this short tour. Set in 1977 against the backdrop of declining industrial Pittsburgh, 'Jitney' portrays an unlicensed taxi cab company and its drivers, struggling to make a living on the periphery of society. This is a play of subtlety and nuance which rewards the attention of the audience and subverts their expectations of the c...
Running With Lions – Lyric Hammersmith
London

Running With Lions – Lyric Hammersmith

Running With Lions is a colourful, vibrant and life-affirming celebration of family, which also addresses the dark shadows lurking in the corners, where things have been swept away and repressed. Gloria returns to her parents’ home where her daughter has been staying whilst she has been away at a mental health clinic. She struggles to get through to her parents, who feel too ashamed to acknowledge her condition. Problems ensue as desires clash and as the family grapple with the past and the underlying tensions between them. The play begins with Gloria’s perspective but then widens into others showing the inescapable intermingling of worlds. Carter’s writing is very true to life, reflecting conversations which I feel like I have witnessed or had with my own family. She doesn’t compromis...