I’d never really heard anything about The Piano Lesson before my American Drama course, but I’m happy to have read a second August Wilson play. The Piano Lesson presents the lives of an African American family in the 1930s. When Boy Willie drives to Pittsburgh to try to sell his family’s piano, his sister Berniece refuses to comply. Over the course of the play, audiences learn more about the family’s history that dates back to the Civil War. The historic elements of the play are paired with a rather mythic situation in which a ghost of the piano’s previous owner seems to be haunting their home.
This might all sound a bit strange, but it’s an entertaining and rather poignant play about racial and familial relations. I finished the film adaptation about an hour ago (which was a made-for-TV production that ran on CBS in 1995), and was very happily surprised by it. The movie was full of great performances and accurately represented Wilson’s script.
And as a side note, I kind of developed a huge crush on the 1995 version of Courtney B. Vance. Seriously, he was the cutest.
I’m caught up! Just four more plays this semester and that I’m back to my own reading freedom. Graduating in 16 days will be so very refreshing.