Ma Raineys Black Bottom And Wilson Play Piano Lesson

Read Complete Research Material

Ma Raineys Black Bottom and Wilson Play Piano Lesson


These works explore the heritage and experience of African-Americans, decade-by-decade, over the course of the twentieth century. His plays have been produced at regional theaters across the country and all over the world, as well as on Broadway (McDonough, p.2-9). In 2003, Mr. Wilson made his professional stage debut in his one-man show, How I Learned What I Learned. Mr. Wilson's works garnered many awards including Pulitzer Prizes for Fences (1987); and for The Piano Lesson (1990); a Tony Award for Fences; Great Britain's Olivier Award for Jitney; as well as eight New York Drama Critics Circle Awards for Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Fences, Joe Turner's Come and Gone, The Piano Lesson, Two Trains Running, Seven Guitars, Jitney, and Radio Golf. Additionally, the cast recording of Ma Rainey's Black Bottom received a 1985 Grammy Award, and Mr. Wilson received a 1995 Emmy Award nomination for his screenplay adaptation of The Piano Lesson. Mr. Wilson's early works included the one-act plays The Janitor, Recycle, The Coldest Day of the Year, Malcolm X, The Homecoming and the musical satire Black Bart and the Sacred Hills (Wilson, p.12-19).


Mr. Wilson received many fellowships and awards, including Rockefeller and Guggenheim Fellowships in Playwriting, the Whiting Writers Award, 2003 Heinz Award, was awarded a 1999 National Humanities Medal by the President of the United States, and received numerous honorary degrees from colleges and universities, as well as the only high school diploma ever issued by the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. He was an alumnus of New Dramatists, a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a 1995 inductee into the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and on October 16, 2005, Broadway renamed the theater located at 245 West 52nd Street - The August Wilson Theatre. Additionally, Mr. Wilson was posthumously inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame in 2007. Mr. Wilson was born and raised in the Hill District of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and lived in Seattle, Washington at the time of his death. He is immediately survived by his two daughters, Sakina Ansari and Azula Carmen Wilson, and his wife, costume designer Constanza Romero (Wilson, p.10-15).

August Wilson was born Fredrick August Kittle on April 27, 1945. His parents were Frederick Kittel, a German immigrant, and Daisy Wilson, an African-American woman, who migrated to Pittsburgh from North Carolina. The playwright never saw much of his father growing up. He was mostly raised by his mother in an apartment with no hot water in Pittsburgh's Hill District, a mostly black neighborhood. When he was twenty, August Wilson officially became August Wilson. He ditched his absent father's name altogether, aligning himself more with his mother and their African-American heritage.


Wilson faced lots of racial discrimination in school. This reached a peak in high school when Wilson was accused of plagiarism. He'd written an excellent twenty-page paper on Napoleon. However, the teacher didn't believe that a black person could write so well and called him a cheater. When the principal backed ...
Related Ads