Tag Archives: The Piano Lesson

‘Piano Lesson’ at McCarter hits all the right notes

Written in 1990 but set in 1936, “The Piano Lesson” is the fourth in August Wilson’s 10-play Pittsburgh Cycle and his most musical.

Although a fight over a hand-carved upright wooden heirloom  piano is at the center of the play’s conflict, it’s the dialogue that creates most of the music, plus an extended a capella rendition of the prison work song “Berta Berta.” It was a magical stage moment.

Director Jade King Carroll certainly knows her Wilson oeuvre, having served as dramaturg for the recording of the August Wilson Twentieth Century Cycle for WNYC, and offers us a fine, intimate production at the 373-seat Berlind Theatre at the McCarter Theatre Center in Princeton, NJ, though Feb. 7.

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