Goodman Theatre Kicks Off Lorraine Hansberry Celebration

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Photo Source: Liz Lauren

In honor of the late, legendary playwright Lorraine Hansberry, Chicago’s Goodman Theatre is throwing a citywide celebration April 30–June 5. Curated by resident director Chuck Smith, the five weeks of programming will include performances focusing on how the writer’s Chicago roots informed and affected her brilliant work.

To kick off the celebration, “The Sign in Sidney Brustein’s Window,” Hansberry’s final play, is being staged in a buzzy production directed by Anne Kauffman at the Goodman. The City of Chicago has proclaimed May 19 Lorraine Hansberry Day, commemorating what would have been her 86th birthday. In addition, five African-American female artists will be honored at the Lorraine Hansberry Awards, hosted on May 24 hosted by Smith and Woodie King, Jr., in recognition of their effect on American theater.

“During her all-too-brief life and career, Lorraine Hansberry left an indelible mark on the American theater,” said Smith in a statement. “It has been an honor and a pleasure to curate the celebration of this great literary giant—and one of my personal heroes. The rich history of the Hansberry family in Chicago is always worthy of discussion.”

Although Hansberry is best known for her award-winning masterpiece “A Raisin in the Sun” (the first Broadway play written by a black female playwright) the celebration will explore her more obscure works in various interviews and panel discussions, including “Les Blancs” and “To Be Young, Gifted and Black.”

To celebrate Hansberry and her work, check out the full programming scheduling at the Goodman Theatre’s website.

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