Rehearsals for The Piano Lesson are now in full swing. This weekend on Thursday and Saturday, the cast will get an opportunity to work with Stephen Henderson. Mr. Henderson has appeared in numerous productions of August Wilson plays on Broadway and regionally, and is an authority on Wilson’s works. An acting teacher at the University of Buffalo, Mr. Henderson has become a well-recognized character actor in film and TV, most recently appearing in such movies as Tower Heist, Extremely Close and Incredibly Loud, and the movie Lincoln opening this Friday, in which he plays opposite Daniel Day-Lewis as one of his house servants.
Below is a quick video of members of the cast singing the prison chain gang song “Berta Berta,” which appears in Act 1 Scene 2 of the show. Featured students are David Quiñones as Doaker, Daniel Astacio as Boy Willie, Eric Wilbon (a Music Education student) as Wining Boy, and Alex Greyson as Lymon. The Piano Lesson marks an historic moment for the department, as this is the first play to feature an all African American student cast. The play opens Nov. 30th and runs Nov. 30, Dec.1, Dec. 6-8 @ 7:30 PM, and Dec. 2 @ 2:00 PM. The show is in the Alice E. Bartlett Theatre. Tickets are general admission with limited seating, so get your tickets early to avoid being shut out from this challenging and inspiring work.