Incite/Insight Winter 2019 FINAL Incite Insight Winter 2019 - Page 6

6 I n c i t e /I ns i ght Lesson Plan Exploration W i n te r 20 1 9 “Start From Where You Find Yourself” How August Wilson’s Words are Continuing to Inspire Boston Students WR ITTEN BY MEG O’BRIEN A quick study of August Wilson brings up quite a few accolades and impressive statistics. Two Pulitzer Prizes, a Tony Award for Best Play, 10 Broadway productions, three Broadway revivals, the August Wilson Theatre on Broadway, to name a few. August Wilson is the first African American to have a Broadway theater named after him. These facts, along with the history of who August was as a young person, what his community meant to him growing up, the tribute he makes to the Hill District of Pittsburgh in his writing, and his focus on the black experience in America in his Century Cycle results in, at least in my opinion, a call to action for those of us who have devoted our lives to educating young people about theatre. We must teach August Wilson’s work. We must inform our students about his plays, the man behind the art, who he was as a young boy in Pittsburgh, the path that brought him to Broadway, and why his work is so essential to our field. It doesn’t matter who our students are or where they live, August Wilson’s writing is and should be required study. Osamede Izevbizua, 3rd Place Winner in 2019 Boston Regional Finalists of the Huntington Theatre’s August Wilson Monologue Competition. Photo Credit: David Marshall