FACTOID # 23: Wisconsin has more metal fabricators per capita than any other state.
 
 Home   Encyclopedia   Statistics   States A-Z   Flags   Maps   FAQ   About 
   
 
WHAT'S NEW
 

SEARCH ALL

FACTS & STATISTICS    Advanced view

Search encyclopedia, statistics and forums:

 

 

(* = Graphable)

 

 


Encyclopedia > August Wilson
August Wilson
August Wilson

August Wilson (April 27, 1945October 2, 2005) was a Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright. His singular achievement and literary legacy is a cycle of ten plays, each set in a different decade, depicting the comedy and tragedy of the African American experience in the 20th century. Image File history File links August_wilson. ... Image File history File links August_wilson. ... April 27 is the 117th day of the year (118th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 248 days remaining. ... 1945 (MCMVL) was a common year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1945 calendar). ... October 2 is the 275th day (276th in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian Calendar, with 90 days remaining. ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The gold medal awarded for Public Service in Journalism The Pulitzer Prize is an American award regarded as the highest honor in print journalism, literary achievements, and musical compositions. ... Template:Unsourced A playwright, also known as a dramatist, is someone who writes dramatic literature or drama. ... An African American (also Afro-American, Black American, or simply black) is a member of an ethnic group in the United States whose ancestors, usually in predominant part, were indigenous to Africa. ...

Contents

Biography

Early life

late 1950s, his mother married David Bedford, and the Bedford family moved from the Hill to a then predominantly white working-class neighborhood, Hazelwood. There, they encountered racial hostility; bricks were thrown through a window at their new home. Hazelwood is a neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, which is bordered by Greenfield and Oakland on the north, Squirrel Hill and Glen Hazel on the east, and the Monongahela River on the south and west. ...


Wilson was the only black students at Central Catholic High School in 1959; threats and abuse drove him away, but Connelley Vocational High School proved unchallenging. He dropped out of Gladstone High School in the 10th grade in 1960 when a teacher accused him of plagiarizing a 20-page paper on Napoleon. Central Catholic High School is a Roman Catholic college preparatory school located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on Fifth Avenue. ... For other uses, see Napoleon (disambiguation). ...


Wilson made such extensive use of the Carnegie Library to educate himself that they later awarded him a degree, the only such one they have bestowed. Wilson, who had learned to read at age four, began reading black writers there at age 12 and spent the remainder of his teen years educating himself by reading Ralph Ellison, Richard Wright, Langston Hughes, Arna Bontemps, and others. The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh is the public library system in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. ... Ralph Ellison (March 1, 1913[1] – April 16, 1994) was a scholar and writer. ... Richard Nathaniel Wright (September 4, 1908 – November 28, 1960) was an American author of novels, short stories and non-fiction. ... Langston Hughes (February 1, 1902 – May 22, 1967) was an American poet, novelist, playwright, short story writer, and newspaper columnist. ... Arna Bontemps, photographed by Carl Van Vechten, 1939 Arna Wendell Bontemps (October 13, 1902 _ June 4, 1973) was an American poet and part of the Harlem Renaissance. ...


By this time, Wilson knew that he wanted to be a writer, but this created tension with his mother, who wanted him to become a lawyer. She forced him to leave the family home and he enlisted in the United States Army for a three-year stint in 1962, but left after one year and went back to working odd jobs such as a porter, short-order cook, gardener, and dishwasher. The United States Army is the largest branch of the United States armed forces and has primary responsibility for land-based military operations. ...


Adult life

August Kittel changed his name to August Wilson to honor his mother when his father died in 1965. That same year he discovered the blues as sung by Bessie Smith and bought a typewriter for twenty dollars and started writing poetry. Blues music redirects here. ... Bessie Smith (July, 1892 – September 26, 1937) is largely regarded as the most popular and successful blues singer of the 1920s and 1930s, and by some as the most influential performer in blues history. ...


In 1968, Wilson co-founded the Black Horizon Theater in the Hill District of Pittsburgh along with fellow resident Rob Penny, who went on to become associate professor of African studies at the University of Pittsburgh. Wilson served as a scriptwriter and director for the next ten years; desperate for space, they staged many of their plays in elementary school auditoriums and community centers. His first play was "Recycling" and was performed for audiences in small theaters and public housing community centers. Among these early efforts was Jitney which he revised more than two decades later as part of his 10-play cycle on twentieth century Pittsburgh. Robert Lee Rob Penny (1941–2003) was an American playwright, poet, and professor. ... The University of Pittsburgh is a state-related, doctoral/research university in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. ... Jitney is a play in two acts by American playwright August Wilson. ...


Wilson's first marriage was to Brenda Burton in 1969. That same year, his stepfather David Bedford died. His oldest daughter, Sakina Ansari Wilson, was born January 22, 1970. The marriage ended in 1972.


In 1976 Dr. Vernell Lillie, who had founded the Kuntu Repertory Theatre two years earlier, directed Wilson's The Homecoming. That same year Wilson saw Sizwe Bansi Is Dead at the Pittsburgh Public Theater, his first professional play. Wilson, Penny and poet Maisha Baton also started the Kuntu Writers Workshop to bring writers together in a meaningful discussion and to assist writers with getting published and/or produced. Both organizations are still active to this day.


In 1978 Wilson moved to Saint Paul, Minnesota at the suggestion of his friend director Claude Purdy, who helped him secure a job writing educational scripts for the Science Museum of Minnesota. In 1980 he received a fellowship for the Minneapolis Playwrights Center. Location in Ramsey County and the state of Minnesota. ... The Science Museum of Minnesota is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization governed by a board of trustees, staffed by over 500 employees and over 1,600 volunteers located in the states capital city of Saint Paul which focuses on topics in technology and natural history. ...


In 1981 he was married (for the second of three times) to Judy Oliver, a social worker. They divorced in 1990. That same year Wilson moved to Seattle. City nickname Emerald City City bird Great Blue Heron City flower Dahlia City mottos The City of Flowers The City of Goodwill City song Seattle, the Peerless City Mayor Greg Nickels County King County Area   - Total   - Land   - Water   - % water 369. ...


Death

On August 26, 2005, he told his hometown newspaper, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, that he had been diagnosed with liver cancer in June of 2005 and been given 3 to 5 months to live. He died on October 2, 2005 at Swedish Medical Center in Seattle, Washington. He was buried in Greenwood Cemetery on October 8, 2005. He was survived by his third wife, costume designer Constanza Romero, and his two daughters, Sakina Ansari and Azula Carmen (daughter of Constanza). August 26 is the 238th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (239th in leap years). ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, also known simply as the PG, is the largest daily newspaper serving Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and the surrounding areas. ... Hepatic tumors are tumors or growths on or in the liver (medical terms pertaining to the liver often start in hepato- or hepatic from the Greek word for liver, hepar). ... October 2 is the 275th day (276th in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian Calendar, with 90 days remaining. ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Swedish Medical Center, founded in 1910, is a large nonprofit health care provider located in Seattle, Washington. ... Nickname: The Emerald City Location of Seattle in King County and Washington Coordinates: Country United States State Washington County King Incorporated December 2 1869 Mayor Greg Nickels (D) Area    - City 369. ... Greenwood Cemetery is a cemetery in the Pittsburgh suburb of OHara Township, Pennsylvania. ... October 8 is the 281st day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (282nd in leap years). ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Born in 1958. ...


On October 16, 2005, only 14 days after Wilson's death, the Virginia Theatre in New York's Broadway theatre district was renamed the August Wilson Theatre. This is the first Broadway theatre to bear the name of an African-American. October 16 is the 289th day of the year (290th in leap years). ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Address: 245 W. 52nd St. ... Nickname: Big Apple; City that never Sleeps; Gotham Location in the state of New York Coordinates: Country United States State New York Boroughs The Bronx Manhattan Queens Brooklyn Staten Island Settled 1613 Mayor Michael Bloomberg (R) Area    - City 1,214. ... Broadway theatre[1] is often considered the highest professional form of theatre in the United States. ... The August Wilson Theatre at 245 W. 52nd Street in New York City was designed by architects C. Howard Crane and Kenneth Franzheim and opened in 1925 as the Guild Theatre. ...


Quotes

  • "Everybody has to find his own song. Now, I can look at you, Mr. Loomis, and see you a man who done forgot his song. Forgot how to sing it. A fellow forget that and he forget who he is. Forget how he’s supposed to mark down life...See, Mr. Loomis, when a man forgets his song, he goes off in search of it...till he find out he’s got it with him all the time." Joe Turner’s Come and Gone
  • "Don’t you worry ‘bout whether someone like you; worry ‘bout whether they’re doin’ right by you." Fences
  • "Money can't buy what that piano costs. You can't sell your soul for money. It wont go to the buyer. It'll shrivel and shrink to know that you ain't taken on to it. but won't go with the buyer. The Piano Lesson
  • "Death ain't nothing but a fastball on the outside corner." Fences
  • "All you need in the world is love and laughter. That's all anybody needs. To have love in one hand and laughter in the other."

Literary works

Wilson's most famous plays are Fences (1985) (which won a Pulitzer Prize and a Tony Award), The Piano Lesson (1990) (a Pulitzer Prize and the New York Drama Critics' Circle Award), Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, and Joe Turner's Come and Gone. Fences is a play by August Wilson; it was his second play to go to Broadway. ... The gold medal awarded for Public Service in Journalism The Pulitzer Prize is an American award regarded as the highest honor in print journalism, literary achievements, and musical compositions. ... What is popularly called the Tony Award (formally, the Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Theatre) is an annual award celebrating achievements in live American theater, including musical theater, primarily honoring productions on Broadway in New York. ... August Wilsons The Piano Lesson was the 1990 Pulitzer Prize winner for drama, and concerned a brother and a sister arguing about whether or not they should sell their family piano. ... The gold medal awarded for Public Service in Journalism The Pulitzer Prize is an American award regarded as the highest honor in print journalism, literary achievements, and musical compositions. ... Ma Raineys Black Bottom is a 1982 play; one of a ten-play cycle by August Wilson that chronicles 20th Century African American experience. ... Joe Turners Come and Gone is a play by Pulitzer Prize winning playwright August Wilson. ...


The Pittsburgh Cycle

In 2005, August Wilson completed a ten-play cycle, nine of which are set in Pittsburgh, chronicling the African-American experience in the 20th century. These are:

Although the plays are not strictly connected to the degree of a serial story, some characters appear (at various ages) in more than one of the cycle's plays. Children of characters in earlier plays may appear in later plays. The character most frequently mentioned in the cycle is Aunt Esther, a 'washer of souls'. She is reported to be 287 years old in Gem of the Ocean, which takes place in her home at 1839 Wylie Avenue. The plays often include an apparently mentally-impaired oracular character (different in each play) - for example, Hedley [Sr.] in Seven Guitars, or Hambone in Two Trains Running. Gem of the Ocean is play by Pulitzer Prize winner August Wilson; it is set in 1904 at 1839 Wylie Avenue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvanias Hill District. ... Joe Turners Come and Gone is a play by Pulitzer Prize winning playwright August Wilson. ... Ma Raineys Black Bottom is a 1982 play; one of a ten-play cycle by August Wilson that chronicles 20th Century African American experience. ... Nickname: The Windy City, The Second City, Chi Town, The City of Big Shoulders The 312 Motto: Urbs In Horto (Latin: City in a Garden), I Will Location in Chicagoland and Illinois Coordinates: Country United States State Illinois County Cook Incorporated March 4, 1837 Mayor Richard M. Daley (D) Area... August Wilsons The Piano Lesson was the 1990 Pulitzer Prize winner for drama, and concerned a brother and a sister arguing about whether or not they should sell their family piano. ... The gold medal awarded for Public Service in Journalism The Pulitzer Prize is an American award regarded as the highest honor in print journalism, literary achievements, and musical compositions. ... Seven Guitars is a 1995 Play written by noted American playwright August Wilson. ... Fences is a play by August Wilson; it was his second play to go to Broadway. ... The gold medal awarded for Public Service in Journalism The Pulitzer Prize is an American award regarded as the highest honor in print journalism, literary achievements, and musical compositions. ... Two Trains Running is a play in two acts by American playwright August Wilson. ... Jitney is a play in two acts by American playwright August Wilson. ... King Hedley II is August Wilsons decades play set in the 1980s, 1985, to be specific. ... Radio Golf is a play that first premiered in 2005 by August Wilson. ... Gem of the Ocean is play by Pulitzer Prize winner August Wilson; it is set in 1904 at 1839 Wylie Avenue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvanias Hill District. ... Seven Guitars is a 1995 Play written by noted American playwright August Wilson. ... Two Trains Running is a play in two acts by American playwright August Wilson. ...


Awards and tributes

  • 1985: New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
  • 1985: Tony Award nomination for Best Play, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
  • 1987: Drama Desk Award for Outstanding New Play, Fences
  • 1987: New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play, Fences
  • 1987: Pulitzer Prize for Drama, Fences
  • 1987: Tony Award for Best Play, Fences
  • 1988: Literary Lion Award from the New York Public Library
  • 1988: New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play, Joe Turner's Come and Gone
  • 1988: Tony Award nomination for Best Play, Joe Turner's Come and Gone
  • 1990: Drama Desk Award for Outstanding New Play, The Piano Lesson
  • 1990: New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play, The Piano Lesson
  • 1990: Tony Award nomination for Best Play, The Piano Lesson
  • 1990: Pulitzer Prize for Drama, The Piano Lesson
  • 1992: American Theatre Critics' Association Award, Two Trains Running
  • 1992: New York Drama Critics Circle Citation for Best American Play, Two Trains Running
  • 1992: Tony Award nomination for Best Play, Two Trains Running
  • 1996: New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play, Seven Guitars
  • 1996: Tony Award nomination for Best Play, Seven Guitars
  • 1999: National Humanities Medal
  • 2000: New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play, Jitney
  • 2000: Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Off-Broadway Play, Jitney
  • 2001: Tony Award nomination for Best Play, King Hedley II
  • 2004: The Freedom of Speech Award at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival.
  • 2005: Make_Shift Award at the U.S. Confederation of Play Writers.

Freedom of speech is enshrined in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and is granted formal recognition by the laws of most nations. ...

External links

The Internet Broadway Database (IBDB) is an online database of Broadway theatre productions and their personnel. ...

Further reading

  • August Wilson: A Casebook (Casebooks on Modern Dramatists, Volume 15), edited by Marilyn Elkins, Garland Publishing (November 1, 1999), ISBN 0-8153-3634-9
  • The Dramatic Vision of August Wilson by Sandra Shannon, Howard University Press (1995)
  • August Wilson and Black Aesthetics by Sandra Shannon, Palgrave MacMillan (2004)
  • August Wilson's Fences: A Reference Guide by Sandra Shannon, Greenwood Publishing (2003)
  • "Playwright August Wilson dies at 60". CNN. Retrieved Oct. 3, 2005.
  • "August Wilson," in In Their Company: Portraits of American Playwrights, Photographs by Ken Collins, Interviews by Victor Wishna (New York: Umbrage Editions, 2006).

  Results from FactBites:
 
PAL: August Wilson (1945-2005) (1853 words)
Wilson was a bright student, but due to racial taunts and discrimination, culminating in a professor's disbelief in his writing ability and accusation of plagiarism, he dropped out of high school at age 15 (Wolfe 2).
Wilson was also greatly influenced by playwright Amiri Baraka, a participant in the Black Art movement of the 1960Õs.Through Baraka's writing, Wilson "learned sociology and political commitment" and learned to include the emotions of anger and violence.
Wilson's importance as a dramatist stems from his own background as a fl man born and raised in America, struggling against alienation in his own country.
August Wilson - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1335 words)
August Wilson (April 27, 1945 – October 2, 2005) was a Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright.
Wilson's parents stayed together until he was five, and his fathers raised their children in Manalapan, New Jersey a Bedford Avenue two-room apartment behind a grocery store.
Wilson served as a scriptwriter and director for the next ten years; desperate for space, they staged many of their plays in elementary school auditoriums and community centers.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

COMMENTARY     


Share your thoughts, questions and commentary here
Your name
Your comments

Want to know more?
Search encyclopedia, statistics and forums:

 


Press Releases |  Feeds | Contact
The Wikipedia article included on this page is licensed under the GFDL.
Images may be subject to relevant owners' copyright.
All other elements are (c) copyright NationMaster.com 2003-5. All Rights Reserved.
Usage implies agreement with terms, 1022, m