The Mark Taper Forum opens "Blues for An Alabama Sky" directed by Phylicia Rashad with a nod to the power of community. It's 1930s Harlem.
From first light (it's three in the morning) Angel (Nija Okoro) steals the show, even in a drunken stupor after being dumped by her boyfriend who had the temerity to go and get married. Fashion designer for Josephine Baker, Guy (Greg Alverez Reid), out and proud, takes Angel under his wing as the story unfolds.
Phylicia Reshad is an actor first and it shows in how the cast has.. evidently.. been given a lead but have not been by pulled by puppet strings.
We meet Sam (Joe Holt), a local doctor who has just delivered twins and has the good fortune to embody the notion of "Let the Good Times Roll!" His interest in the hardworking Delia (Kim Steele), who lives across the hall from Guy, makes us smile.
This is a straight play that reflects the period and the issues of the times. The emergence of bias, even in what most folks would imagine in the Harlem community would be tight and supportive, rears its hoary head.
How Leland, (Dennis Pearson), a new arrival from Alabama, deals with personal issues in Cleag's engaging script is a twist.
Elizabeth Harper's lights join Iocavelli's period set to reach into the depths of the spirits of these disparate characters who come together as politics and Art merge as driving forces reflected in the Harlem Renaissance.
Blues For An Alabama Sky
by Pearl Cleage
Directed by Phylicia Reshad
Mark Taper Forum
Center Theatre Group
l35 N. Grand
Los Angeles, California 90012
Opens April 14, 2022
Tuesday through Friday at 8 p.m.,
Saturday at 2:30 and 8 p.m.,
Sunday at 1 and 6:30 p.m.
Tickets and Information: (213) 628-2772
Call for exceptions