6ABC Loves The Arts
Arden Theatre presents Clybourne Park
OLD CITY - February 19, 2012 (WPVI) -- The Arden Theatre is staging Clybourne Park, the winner of last year's Pulitzer Prize for drama.
In Clybourne Park, writer Bruce Norris takes some of the characters from the 1959 classic, Raisin in the Sun, and builds a story around a house and a changing neighborhood over a span of 5 decades.
Act I is set in 1959 when an African American family is about to move in to what had been the all-white enclave of Clybourne Park.
Erika Rose who plays Francine & Lena in Clybourne Park said, "They hash out all kinds of issues as to why a black family should or shouldn't move here, what will happen to the neighborhood, living next door to a black family, how do they live? What do you they eat?"
Act II fast forwards 50 years.
"And it's the same neighborhood but it's completely flipped," said Rose.
Ian Merrill Peakes, who plays Karl & Steve in Clybourne Park added, "All of the white people want to move back in because now the neighborhood is the place to be."
For actress Erika Rose, the play has personal meaning. Her own grandmother was a block buster in 1954.
"I think it's going to spark a lot of conversation when people go home. It could be about race, gentrification. It could be about class, legacy of a neighborhood, and how we all work together and live together," said Rose.
In addition to the Pulitzer, Clybourne Park has won a host of critical awards and is slated to hit Broadway, this spring.
Peakes said, "I think if everyone can sort of look at this play, hold a mirror to themselves and just be honest about our fears and our anxieties and our issues with other people, I think we can take a deep breath and take that next step forward into making it a better world."Clybourne Park is on the Arden's Main Stage through March 18th. For tickets and show times, go to Arden Theatre Company.
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