Tony winner Tonya Pinkins (Caroline, or Change, Jelly’s Last Jam) has signed on for Katori Hall’s Hurt Village, the inaugural production at Signature Theatre Company’s Romulus Linney Courtyard Theatre in the new Signature Center. This world premiere play will begin previews on February 7, 2012, open on February 27 and run through March 18, directed by Patricia McGregor.
In addition to Pinkins, The Hurt Village will feature Marsha Stephanie Blake (The Merchant of Venice, Joe Turner's Come and Gone), Amari Cheatom (Zooman and the Sign), Nicholas Christopher (Rent, In the Heights), Corey Hawkins (Suicide, Incorporated), Ron Cephas Jones (Gem of the Ocean, The Bridge Project), Joaquina Kalukango (Godspell) and Saycon Sengbloh (Fela!, Hair). Additional casting will be announced at a later date.
It’s the end of a long summer in Hurt Village, a housing project in Memphis. A government Hope Grant means relocation for many of the project’s residents, including Cookie, a 13-year-old aspiring rapper, along with her mother Crank and great-grandmother Big Mama. As the family prepares to move, Cookie’s father Buggy unexpectedly returns from a tour of duty in Iraq. Ravaged by the war, Buggy struggles to find a position in his disintegrating community, along with a place in his daughter’s wounded heart.
Hurt Village earned Hall the prestigious Susan Smith Blackburn Prize for outstanding female playwright. She is currently represented on Broadway by The Mountaintop.
The design team for Hurt Village includes David Gallo (set and projection design), Clint Ramos (costume design), Sarah Sidman (lighting design), Rob Kaplowitz (sound design), Cookie Jordan (hair and makeup design), Kate Wilson (dialect coach), Rick Sordelet (fight direction), and Luqman Brown (additional music).
The Signature Center will open on January 31, 2012, when previews begin for Athol Fugard’s Blood Knot in the Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre.