In an effort to create greater accessibility for students and encourage their attendance throughout the run of Lorraine Hansberry's landmark play, "A Raisin in the Sun," directed by Tony Award winner Phylicia Rashad at Westport Country Playhouse, tickets for students will be $15 at all performances. The play is appropriate for ages 12 and up. The student ticket access program is supported in part by a grant from The Adolph and Ruth Schnurmacher Foundation.
A valid student ID will be required. Performances are October 9 through November 3, Tuesday at 8 p.m., Wednesday at 2 and 8 p.m., Thursday and Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 3 and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m.
Students may call The Playhouse box office at (203) 227-4177, or stop by The Playhouse at 25 Powers Court, Westport, between noon and 6 p.m., to purchase $15 tickets. In addition, educators are eligible for 50% discounts at all performances.
The stirring and timeless American classic, "A Raisin in the Sun," is about a black family in 1950s Southside Chicago and their quest for a piece of the American Dream.
The ticket discount program for students is part of an education and community engagement initiative, entitled "What Happens to a Dream Deferred: Lorraine Hansberry and 'A Raisin in the Sun,'" in conjunction with The Playhouse production. The initiative offers panel discussions, talkbacks, film screenings, and other events for families, students, and educators to explore the play's historical context, contemporary relevance, and lasting influence. The initiative has been made possible through funding by KPMG; Kate and Bob Devlin,The Devlin Foundation; The Graham Foundation of CT; and Pitney Bowes Foundation; with additional support from The Maurer Family Foundation, the Westport Young Woman's League, the Lucille Lortel Foundation, Koskoff, Koskoff and Bieder, and Westport Rotary Club.
Director Phylicia Rashad has directed Paul Stovall's "Immediate Family" (Goodman Theatre, Chicago), Lorraine Hansberry's "A Raisin in the Sun" (Ebony Repertory Theatre and Kirk Douglas Theatre, LA), and August Wilson's "Gem of the Ocean" (Seattle Repertory Company). Her acting credits on Broadway include "August: Osage County," "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof," "Cymbeline" (Lincoln Center Theatre), August Wilson's "Gem of the Ocean" (Tony nomination), "A Raisin in the Sun" (Tony and Drama Desk Awards), "Into the Woods," "Dreamgirls," and "The Wiz." Films for TV include "Steel Magnolias" and "A Raisin in the Sun" (NAACP Image Award, Emmy and SAG nominations). She is well known for her television series, "The Cosby Show" and "Cosby."
Playwright Lorraine Hansberry (1930 – 1965) was inspired to write "A Raisin in the Sun" by her family's battle against racial segregation in Chicago. It was the first play written by an African-American woman to be produced on Broadway. After her untimely death from pancreatic cancer, her ex-husband Robert Nemiroff adapted many of her writings into the play "To Be Young, Gifted and Black." "Raisin," a musical based on "A Raisin in the Sun," won the 1974 Tony Award for Best Musical. "A Raisin in the Sun" was revived on Broadway in 2004 with Phylicia Rashad (Tony Award winner for Best Actress). It was produced for television in 2008, garnering two NAACP Image Awards.