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Rocketta
Oct 3rd, 2005, 04:05 PM
Award-winning U.S. playwright August Wilson dies

50 minutes ago



Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright August Wilson, whose cycle of plays chronicling 20th-century African-American life brought a new frankness to the way theater dealt with race, died of liver cancer on Sunday in Seattle, a hospital spokesman said. He was 60.

Wilson disclosed his illness in August when a spokeswoman said he may have only months to live.

He spent part of the last months of his life working on "Radio Golf," the 10th and final play in what has become known as his "Pittsburgh Cycle."

The play opened in Los Angeles last July to reviews that called it a fitting last chapter in a series of plays that dramatized the hopes and frustrations of black life through every decade of the 20th century, starting with characters that remembered slavery and ending with characters aiming at wealth and political power.

"Radio Golf" had its world premiere in April at the Yale Repertory Theater in New Haven, Connecticut, where he launched his professional career 21 years ago. Trade paper Variety called it "extraordinarily unformed, unfocused and overly complicated."

It recently ended its run in Los Angeles, and plans were afoot to bring it to Broadway.

All but one of the plays, Wilson's 1984 breakthrough "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom," were set in the Hill District of Pittsburgh where Wilson grew up, the son of a white German immigrant and an African-American mother.

Wilson, a high school dropout, won the Pulitzer for "Fences" and "Piano Lesson" and the best play Tony for "Fences."

His other works included "Jitney," "Joe Turner's Come and Gone" and "Seven Guitars."

Many critics compared Wilson's Hill stories to William Faulkner's novels set in Mississippi's mythical Yoknapatawpha County.

Wilson's plays helped bring to prominence a new generation of black actors, including Charles S. Dutton, Laurence Fishburne and S. Epatha Merkerson.

Wilson was diagnosed with cancer in June by his doctors in Seattle. The disease proved too advanced for treatment, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, which broke the story of his illness.

"I've lived a blessed life. I'm ready," Wilson told the Post-Gazette in August.

Wilson will be immortalized on Broadway later this month when the Virginia Theater is renamed the August Wilson Theater.

Wilson is survived by his third wife and two daughters.

Reuters/VNU

Shenay La Soul
Oct 3rd, 2005, 05:19 PM
Mr. Wilson will be missed but he left us so much and for that we are grateful.

Rocketta
Oct 3rd, 2005, 05:27 PM
Mr. Wilson will be missed but he left us so much and for that we are grateful.

Thats true his plays will live on. :worship:

Who is that in your avatar...I know the guy but who's the girl?

Shenay La Soul
Oct 3rd, 2005, 06:33 PM
Thats true his plays will live on. :worship:

Who is that in your avatar...I know the guy but who's the girl?

That's Mr. Hall's wife, actress-director Kasi Lemmons.

Rocketta
Oct 3rd, 2005, 06:59 PM
That's Mr. Hall's wife, actress-director Kasi Lemmons.

She looks very familiar to me....like she is a girl that use to be on Another World but I looked on Internet Movie database and it doesn't have it listed. The girl I'm thinking of was in Candyman and Another World and she's that redbone color with big lips...I think it's the same girl. :scratch:

Stamp Paid
Oct 3rd, 2005, 07:04 PM
That's Mr. Hall's wife, actress-director Kasi Lemmons.

Yea she directed Eve's Bayou, didnt she?

Shenay La Soul
Oct 3rd, 2005, 07:13 PM
She looks very familiar to me....like she is a girl that use to be on Another World but I looked on Internet Movie database and it doesn't have it listed. The girl I'm thinking of was in Candyman and Another World and she's that redbone color with big lips...I think it's the same girl. :scratch:

Kasi was in Candyman. I checked and she was on As The World Turns for 3 years in the 80's (the site said she played Nella).

Shenay La Soul
Oct 3rd, 2005, 07:14 PM
Yea she directed Eve's Bayou, didnt she?

That is correct.

Rocketta
Oct 3rd, 2005, 07:16 PM
Kasi was in Candyman. I checked and she was on As The World Turns for 3 years in the 80's (the site said she played Nella).

yeah I saw that but I watch Another World so I'm not getting those mixed up. ;)