‘Radio Golf’ to Open Friday

August 25, 2011 at 1:27 pm Leave a comment


Just weeks before Pittsburgh-born playwright August Wilson died in 2005, he finished the last of his series of 10 plays called “The Pittsburgh Cycle.” That last play is called Radio Golf, and it’s the next offering in the Penn State Centre Stage season.

A relatively small cast—just five actors—will stage the story of Harmond Wilkes, who wants to redevelop Pittsburgh’s Hill District and who also is campaigning to become the city’s first black mayor. There are complications along the way, and those complications challenge Wilkes to rethink a few things, not the least of which is his ethics.

I checked out the dress rehearsal on Monday night and took some photos, including the one above of Penn State MFA acting candidates Bianca Washington (playing Wilkes’ wife, Mame) and Andy Lucien (playing Wilkes). I not only liked the play, but I also liked that it’s full of Pittsburgh references, making it enjoyable on a couple of different levels.

It also was my first chance to see Penn State theatre professor Charles Dumas on stage. Dumas has been on Law & Order and a bunch of other TV shows; in Radio Golf, he plays the role of Old Joe, who throws a rather large monkey wrench into Wilkes’ plans for bringing a Starbucks, a Whole Foods, etc. into the Hill District.

The remaining two cast members are Herb Newsome, a New York-based actor, and Reggie Powell, an MFA acting candidate at Penn State.

There’s a preview of Radio Golf tonight at 7:30, with opening night tomorrow at 8:00. The show runs through Sept. 3 in the Citizens Bank Theatre Downtown. Check it out if you get a chance.

Tina Hay, editor

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