Pulitzer Prize-winning Suzan-Lori Parks’ the first of The Red Letter Plays: F**king A opened last night at Signature Theatre (480 West 42nd Street between 9th and 10th Avenues). Her second play of the series & In the Blood opens September 17th. This is the first time these acclaimed plays will be presented together; they will run simultaneously at The Pershing Square Signature Center (480 West 42nd Street between 9th and 10th Avenues). These two plays mark the final productions of Parks’ Signature Residency One.
In these modern remixes of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s classic novel The Scarlet Letter, Pulitzer Prize-winner Suzan-Lori Parks conjures two distinct interpretations of Hester, Western literature’s most famous adulteress.
In Fucking A, Hester Smith, the revered and reviled local abortionist, hatches a plan to buy her jailed son’s freedom-and nothing will deter Hester from her quest. In this wild-eyed blend of story and song, Hester’s branded letter A becomes a provocative emblem of vengeance, violence, and sacrifice. In the Blood’s Hester La Negrita is a penniless mother of five condemned by the men who love her. Hester turns to former lovers, friends, and the institutions meant to support her, only to be spurned by them all with devastating consequences. These two plays form a haunting and powerful indictment of the way we live now.
The cast for Fucking A includes J. CameRon Barnett (The Emperor Jones), Tony Award-nominee Brandon Victor Dixon(Hamilton), Ben Horner (The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time), Theatre World Award-winner Joaquina Kalukango (The Color Purple), Tony Award-nominee Marc Kudisch (Signature’s The Wayside Motor Inn), Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winner Christine Lahti (“Chicago Hope”), Ruibo Qian (Bull in a China Shop), Drama Desk Award-nominee Elizabeth Stanley (On the Town), Raphael Nash Thompson (Pericles). The creative team includes Rachel Hauck (Scenic Design), Emilio Sosa (Costume Design), Jeff Croiter (Lighting Design), Darron L West (Sound Design), Todd Almond (Music Direction). Evangeline Rose Whitlock is the Production Stage Manager. Casting by Caparelliotis Casting.